Archive, April 2016.

Several bills have been introduced in the General Assembly this session addressing gun violence in Illinois. According to the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence, 80 percent of those considering suicide and over 50 percent of mass shooters in the past twenty years have showed signs of mental illness. The bills are designed to keep firearms out of hands of those with mental illness or who pose a danger to themselves or others. 
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In Illinois, lawmakers are considering a series of bills aimed at helping law enforcement officials more easily police and investigate online crimes. One such law, Senate Bill 2871, would prohibit juveniles charged with crimes from accessing their social media accounts before trial or during sentencing. Though the bill has received initial support, many have voiced concerns over its potential impact on the privacy rights of youths and their families.
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Recently, a bill introduced in January by State Senator Patricia Van Pelt (D-Chicago) was amended to further increase the rights of minors charged with committing a criminal offense. If passed, the new law would ensure that more youths are represented by counsel throughout the entire legal process.
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In response to a disturbing video of two adolescents fighting while at school, which went viral after an onlooker posted a recording, Illinois representative Terry Brant introduced a bill that would criminalize the uploading of such videos. Under the new bill, posting recordings of violent or illegal situations on social media websites would constitute disorderly conduct and be punishable as a Class A misdemeanor.
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Recently, the Chicago Police Department has come under fire for its use of cell site simulators in criminal investigations. In response to concerns that the devices violate citizens’ Fourth Amendment rights, the state legislature introduced a bill that would address many of these concerns.
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