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Elgin criminal defense attorneyEven though most people never intend to run afoul of the law, there are some situations where a person may be accused of harming someone else, and these may lead to criminal charges. In some cases, an argument or disagreement may get out of control, causing a person to feel threatened, or a physical fight may break out, resulting in injuries. These situations could lead to assault and/or battery charges. While these charges are often used together, they are two separate offenses, and it is important to understand the distinctions between them. Depending on the circumstances of a case, assault or battery may be charged as a misdemeanor, or aggravating factors may lead to felony charges.

Assault Charges

A person may be charged with assault if they knowingly take actions that would reasonably cause someone else to fear that they will suffer bodily harm or to believe that the person will make physical contact with them in an offensive or insulting manner. Since assault involves the threat or anticipation of action, a person may be charged with this offense if they verbally threaten to harm someone else, pull back their fist in preparation to punch someone, or brandish a weapon in a threatening manner.

At the most basic level, assault is charged as a Class C misdemeanor. However, a charge may be elevated to aggravated assault if a case involved certain aggravating factors. If assault is committed in a public place, if a person used a deadly weapon while committing assault, or if the alleged victim was a teacher, school employee, person with physical disabilities, person over the age of 60, park district employee, transit employee, sports official, or security guard, aggravated assault may be charged as a Class A misdemeanor. If a person allegedly discharged a firearm while committing assault or threatened to run someone over with a vehicle, or if the alleged victim was a police officer, fireman, emergency medical technician, corrections officer, or probation officer, aggravated assault is a Class 4 felony.

Battery Charges

A person may be charged with battery if they knowingly caused bodily harm to someone else without legal justification or if they made physical contact with someone in a manner that was insulting or provoking. While assault and battery are often charged together, a person may be charged with battery even if they did not commit assault. For example, battery may involve striking someone from behind without warning.

In many cases, battery is charged as a Class A misdemeanor. A charge may be elevated to aggravated battery based on many of the same aggravating factors as for assault, including the identity of the victim, the location where the incident occurred, and the use of a firearm or another deadly weapon. In addition, aggravated battery may be charged if the alleged victim suffered great bodily harm, permanent disability, or disfigurement. In many cases, aggravated battery is charged as a Class 3 felony. However, more serious felony charges may apply if aggravated assault was committed against a police officer or a child under the age of 13, or if a person injured someone by discharging a firearm. The maximum charge is a Class X felony, and a conviction may result in a jail sentence of up to 60 years or life in prison.

Contact Our Elgin Assault and Battery Defense Attorney

If you are facing charges of assault or battery, you will need a skilled attorney on your side to help you determine the best defense strategy. At The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola, we will advise you of your options, provide you with representation in court, and work to help you avoid a conviction wherever possible or negotiate a lesser charge to ensure that you will not face serious consequences. Contact our Kane County criminal defense lawyer at 847-488-0889 to set up a free consultation and get the defense you need.

 

Sources:

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=1876&ChapterID=53&SeqStart=21100000&SeqEnd=23000000

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=073000050HCh%2E+V%2E+Art%2E+4%2E5&ActID=1999&ChapterID=55&SeqStart=27300000&SeqEnd=29800000

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Kane County felony defense attorneyOf all the different types of criminal charges that a person can face, some of the most serious involve the accusation that a person caused someone else’s death. While intentionally killing someone else can lead to charges of first-degree or second-degree murder, a person may also face felony charges if they are accused of accidentally causing someone’s death. Depending on the circumstances, the offenses of involuntary manslaughter or reckless homicide may apply. Those who are facing these types of charges will want to understand how Illinois law applies to their situation and the potential penalties they could face if they are convicted.

Involuntary Manslaughter and Reckless Homicide Charges

A person may be charged with involuntary manslaughter if they unintentionally kill someone else without a lawful justification. Typically, involuntary manslaughter charges will apply if a person acted recklessly in a way that was likely to cause great bodily harm or death to someone else. In most cases, involuntary manslaughter is charged as a Class 3 felony, and a conviction can result in a prison sentence of two to five years. A person who is convicted of a felony may also be required to pay a fine of up to $25,000.

There are a few situations where more serious felony charges will apply for an involuntary manslaughter case. If the alleged victim was a peace officer, a person may be charged with a Class 2 felony, and a conviction will result in a prison sentence of three to seven years. Class 2 felony charges will also apply if the victim was a member of the alleged offender’s family or household, and in these cases, a conviction can result in a prison sentence of 3 to 14 years.

If a person causes someone else’s death because of the reckless operation of a motor vehicle, watercraft, snowmobile, or all-terrain vehicle, they may be charged with reckless homicide. This could include situations where a person allegedly caused a car accident because they violated traffic laws or committed DUI. Reckless homicide is a Class 3 felony.

Reckless homicide charges may be increased to a Class 2 felony in certain situations, and a conviction may result in an extended prison sentence. If a person allegedly committed reckless homicide in a school zone or construction zone, they may face a prison sentence of 3 to 14 years, and if two or more people were killed, a conviction can result in a prison sentence of 6 to 28 years. The same penalties will apply if a person allegedly killed someone through a violation of Scott’s Law, which requires drivers to slow down and move over when approaching an emergency vehicle that is stopped on the side of the road.

Contact Our Kane County Manslaughter Defense Lawyer

If you have been accused of accidentally killing someone else, you could be facing serious felony charges, and a conviction could lead to a sentence of several years in prison, as well as large fines. At The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola, we can help you determine the best defense strategy against these charges, and we will fight to protect your rights during your case and minimize the potential penalties that you may face. Contact our Aurora reckless homicide defense attorney today at 847-488-0889 to arrange a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K9-3

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-907

https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=073000050HCh%2E+V%2E+Art%2E+4%2E5&ActID=1999&ChapterID=55&SeqStart=27300000&SeqEnd=29800000

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Elgin IL criminal defense attorneyIn recent years, advocates for criminal justice reform have fought against bail requirements for criminal defendants. When a person is charged with a crime, they will usually be required to pay an amount of bail set by a judge before they can be released from police custody. Advocates have argued that this places an unfair burden on lower-income defendants, and the practice has led to many people being required to remain in prison while awaiting trial if they are unable to raise the funds to secure a release. Recently, Illinois passed a law that will eliminate cash bail, along with other changes meant to protect the rights of defendants and address police accountability.

Pretrial Detention and Release in Illinois

The new law, which was passed on January 13, 2021, and is currently awaiting Governor J.B. Pritzker’s signature, will make all defendants eligible for pretrial release without the requirement to post monetary bail. However, there are a number of exceptions that may prevent a person from being released. These include situations in which a person is charged with a violent crime, including:

  • Felonies involving the use or threat of physical force, such as first-degree murder or sexual assault

  • Stalking cases in which the defendant is likely to present a threat to the alleged victim

  • Domestic violence cases in which the defendant allegedly presents a threat to one or more family members or people in their household

  • Weapons charges involving allegations that the defendant poses a threat to a specific person

In some other cases involving felony charges, a person may be denied pretrial release if it is believed that they are likely to flee or not show up for future court dates. However, the burden of proof will be on prosecutors to demonstrate that a defendant should be held in pretrial detention instead of being granted release. These changes to the pretrial release system in Illinois will go into effect on January 1, 2023.

Other Criminal Justice Reforms

In addition to making these major changes to the bail system, the law also includes several provisions meant to protect the rights of prisoners and detainees. People in the custody of police or the department of corrections will have the right to receive reasonable medical treatment without unnecessary delays. Those who are in police custody will also have the right to make up to three phone calls before being questioned by officers.

The law also took steps to address police accountability and reduce police brutality. It bans the use of chokeholds and certain types of military equipment by police, while also requiring officers to use the proper crowd control measures. It also requires officers to intervene and render aid if another officer uses excessive force, and it will require police departments throughout Illinois to use body cameras by 2025.

Contact Our Aurora Criminal Defense Lawyer

While these changes will help protect the rights of those who are charged with crimes in Illinois, defendants will need to be sure they are represented by a lawyer during a criminal case. The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola can provide the defense you need, and we will help you understand the steps you can take to avoid a conviction. To learn how we can help with your case, contact our Elgin criminal defense attorney at 847-488-0889 to set up a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/chicago-politics/hb-3653-heres-a-look-at-whats-included/2415933/

https://www.npr.org/2021/01/25/960465847/illinois-becomes-1st-state-to-drop-cash-bail-system

https://www.pantagraph.com/news/state-and-regional/govt-and-politics/a-look-back-at-how-lawmakers-ended-cash-bail-in-illinois/article_b2f5d01d-f354-5b2e-86b5-4245ef416438.html

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Posted on in Felonies

IL defense attorneyThe state of Illinois has multiple laws that cover kidnapping and other similar crimes that relate to kidnapping. The general definition as written by Illinois law says that kidnapping is the act of taking, restraining, and hiding another person against their will.

This victim does not have to be a child, though punishments for abducting a child are more severe. It is also more common for the victim to not know their abductor, but crimes such as parental kidnapping do exist in Illinois.

Regardless of the relationship to the victim, abductors who are caught can face felony charges and be punished by means of jail time and monetary fines.

What Types of Kidnapping Does Illinois Punish?

The most common type of abduction is a random stranger encounter. This is when an alleged kidnapper singles out a random victim and then carries out the crime for whatever reason. Another common kidnapping happens within a broken household; a divorced person without custody of their child may attempt to kidnap the minor from the other parent to get revenge on their ex-partner.

These types of kidnappings can have specific reasons for the crime:

  • Revenge
  • Ransom
  • Sexual violations
  • Extortion
  • Human trafficking

Besides kidnapping for ransom, the above-mentioned types of kidnapping are punished as a Class 2 felony. Those convicted will face a jail term of 3-7 years and pay a fine of at most $25,000.

Aggravated kidnapping is a more serious type of abduction in which the victim is being held for ransom or the abductor used a dangerous weapon when carrying out the crime. Also, if the abductor hides their identity with a mask, they will be charged with aggravated kidnapping.

This crime sees charges elevated to a Class X felony with a prison term of 6-30 years and a fine of at most $25,000. If the court chooses - or if other felonies were committed during the kidnapping - then extra jail time of 15-25 years will be added to a sentence.

Illinois law also covers lesser crimes that relate to kidnapping including:

  • Unlawful restraint and aggravated unlawful restraint
  • Child abduction
  • Luring a minor
  • Aiding or abetting a child abduction
  • Harboring a runaway

How to Defend Allegations of Kidnapping

The most common strategy to avoid a kidnapping conviction is to prove that the alleged victim gave consent or wanted to be with the person that supposedly kidnapped them. For adult victims, this can be easy to prove, but when the victim is a child, the court is less likely to believe this explanation.

If the child is under 13 years of age or has a mental disability, the court will find that they are not capable of giving consent to another person to take them away from home or family.

Other defense strategies include proving:

  • Mistake of fact
  • Insanity
  • The victim did still have free will to leave

Contact an Elgin, IL Criminal Defense Attorney

Allegations of kidnapping or any of the other Illinois laws against abduction can have serious consequences to a person. The lawyers of the Law Offices of Brian J. Mirandola can help defend the rights of anyone being wrongfully accused of kidnapping. To schedule a free consultation with a Kane County criminal defense lawyer, call our office at 847-488-0889.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=1876&ChapterID=53&SeqStart=12200000&SeqEnd=13600000

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drugs, Kane County drug crimes attorneyAs per the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution, police cannot search a person’s private residence without a search warrant issued by a judge. So, if police believe you have illegal items in your home, that suspicion alone is usually not enough to merit a legal search. However, the laws which protect citizens’ privacy are quite different when it comes to motor vehicles. Because we operate vehicles on public roads, police have much more freedom when it comes to searching a person’s car or truck. If police have searched your vehicle and discovered marijuana, amphetamines, opioids, or other illegal drugs, you may be facing harsh criminal consequences.

When Can Police Legally Search a Vehicle?

Although police have more authority to search motor vehicles than homes, they are still required to follow certain rules regarding vehicle searches. An officer cannot stop and search a vehicle without a reasonable cause for doing so.

There are five main ways a police officer is authorized to search someone’s vehicle. Firstly, if the driver of the vehicle gives the officer consent, the officer may search the vehicle. It is important to always politely decline police vehicle searches if given the chance. A search is also permitted If the officer has probable cause to believe evidence of criminal activity such as stolen items, drugs, or illegal weapons is in the car. Furthermore, police may search a car if they believe doing so is necessary for their own protection. For example, if police have stopped a vehicle but worry the drivers are armed and dangerous, they may be permitted to search the car for weapons. Police may also search a vehicle after a person is arrested. Lastly, police can search a vehicle if they have a search warrant.

Unwarranted Searches Can Result in Dropped Charges

If police searched your vehicle and discovered illegal drugs in it, make sure to discuss the legality of the search with a qualified criminal attorney. If it can be demonstrated that police did not have a valid reason to search the car, truck, motorcycle, or other vehicle, the evidence obtained from that search can be thrown out. If the evidence against you is dismissed, the criminal charges will most likely be dropped.

Do Not Face Drug Charges Alone

Illinois law says that those found transporting drugs in their car may face fines, probation, loss of driving privileges, and jail time. Possession of small amounts of marijuana has been decriminalized in Illinois, but possessing more than 10 grams of cannabis or having drugs like heroin, cocaine, morphine, amphetamine, and barbituric acid/salts can result in much more severe criminal penalties.

If you have been arrested on drug charges, speak to an experienced Kane County criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Call 847-488-0889 today to schedule your free initial consultation at The The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs5.asp?ActID=1941&ChapterID=53

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1937&ChapterID=53

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Avvo Illinois State Bar Association Kane COunty Bar Association
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