Category Archives: Criminal Defense

St. Charles gun charges defense attorney

Criminal charges related to theft, weapons violations, and possession of controlled substances are often the result of a police search of a vehicle or a home. However, if a police search was conducted, and the proper procedures were not followed, it is possible that any evidence discovered in the search will be inadmissible in court. According to the “exclusionary rule,” the government cannot use evidence against a criminal defendant that was acquired in violation of the Constitution. It is crucial for every person in Illinois to know what their rights are in regard to search and seizure of their property.

When Are Police Allowed to Search My Home?

You have a constitutional right to be free from unreasonable searches of your property. The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution states in part that the right of people to be protected from unreasonable searches and seizures will not be violated and that “no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause.” This means that law enforcement cannot search a person’s property without a good reason for doing so. Typically, a person’s residence cannot be legally searched by law enforcement unless the officers have a valid search warrant that was signed by a judge. However, there are several situations in which police can search your home even if they do not have a search warrant.

...
Continue reading

St. Charles child abuse attorney Shaken Baby Syndrome

Being accused of causing an infant’s injury or death can be devastating. People may assume that just because a person was charged with a child-related offense, this means he or she actually committed the crime. Even if the accusation is unfounded, being accused of shaking a baby can result in life-changing consequences. You could endure years or even decades behind bars if convicted. If you are facing criminal charges because you allegedly caused an infant to suffer from Shaken Baby Syndrome, contact an experienced criminal law attorney to discuss your defense options.

Understanding Shaken Baby Syndrome

Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS), also called Shaken Impact Syndrome, refers to the damage caused when an infant or small child is violently shaken. It is estimated that between 1,200 and 1,400 incidences of Shaken Baby Syndrome occur in the United States every year. Babies who are shaken can suffer brain damage, internal bleeding, detached retina, and other severe injuries. These injuries often lead to the baby’s death or long-term disability. A doctor or medical examiner may conclude that Shaken Baby Syndrome caused an infant’s death or injury when the infant exhibits symptoms such as:

...
Continue reading

St. Charles assault and battery attorney

When an individual’s safety or the safety of his or her loved ones is threatened, a normally non-violent person may become fiercely protective. He or she may take actions that he or she would never take otherwise, including using physical force against the person threatening his or her safety or property. The Illinois Criminal Code describes the requirements that a criminal defendant must meet in order to claim self-defense. Depending on the unique situation, claiming self-defense may help a person charged with assault or battery avoid a conviction.

When Is Physical Violence Justified?

Intentionally harming another person is against the law in most cases. However, if a person uses physical force against another because he or she must do so to protect his or her well-being and/or property, this may not be considered a criminal act. According to the Illinois Criminal Code, an individual is allowed to use force against another person if he or she reasonably believes that the action is necessary to defend against another person’s “imminent use of unlawful force.” In order to successfully claim self-defense in Illinois, a defendant must prove that the following elements were present:

...
Continue reading

St. Charles drug charges defense attorney

State and federal laws are always changing. In fact, over 250 new laws are planned to take effect in Illinois at the beginning of the new year. It is crucial to stay up-to-date with these law changes so that you know exactly what your rights are in the event you are charged with a criminal offense. Read on to learn about some of the most important changes taking place in Illinois law this January.

Recreational Marijuana Is Legal for Illinois Residents Over Age 21

The most newsworthy new law taking effect this January is the legalization of cannabis for recreational purposes. Illinois residents aged 21 and over will be legally allowed to purchase marijuana products from licensed retailers in the state starting January 1, 2020. Illinois residents can possess up to 30 grams of cannabis flower, up to 5 grams of cannabis concentrate, and up to 500 milligrams of THC in cannabis-infused products.

...
Continue reading

St. Charles criminal expungement and sealing attorneyEveryone makes mistakes from time to time, and that does not make someone a bad person. Individuals who have arrests or criminal convictions on their records deserve a second chance to live a law-abiding life. Unfortunately, having a criminal record can sometimes prevent a person from gaining the education and skills needed for lawful employment. Some employers outright refuse to hire a person if they have a criminal record – even if the record only shows a minor offense. Obtaining quality housing can also be hindered by a criminal record. If you have been charged or convicted of a criminal offense in Illinois, you should know that you may qualify for record expungement or sealing.

When Can a Criminal Record Be Expunged or Sealed?

You may have heard the terms “expungement” and “sealing” when it comes to erasing a criminal record. If a record is sealed, the information about your criminal charges is hidden from a criminal background check, but police and other government personnel will still be able to view your criminal records. Crimes that involve cruelty to animals, orders of protection, or offenses that require you to register as a sex offender are typically not eligible to be sealed.

When a record is expunged, the offense is completely deleted from your record. You will most likely be eligible for expungement if you were arrested for a crime but never convicted. In some cases, you may be able to have your criminal record expunged if you were convicted of a crime and have completed the sentence, as long as you have not committed any subsequent offenses during a certain waiting period. Similar to record sealing, you are not able to expunge records that include sex crimes involving a minor.

...
Continue reading

Archives