Tag Archives: drug charges

St. Charles drug possession defense attorney

In Illinois, it is a crime to possess illicit substances such as cocaine, methamphetamine, or heroin. However, knowing exactly what counts as being in possession of these substances is not always easy. For example, if a passenger drops a small baggie of cocaine in your car, and it is later discovered by police, are you considered to be in possession of the substance, even though it was not technically on your person? It is essential if you are facing drug charges in Illinois to understand the nature of the charges laid against you and to be fully informed of your defense options. Being charged with possession of a controlled substance can result in significant penalties, so it is imperative to speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney right away.

The Definition of Drug "Possession"

There are two distinct forms of possession according to Illinois law: actual possession and constructive possession. If you are caught by police with illegal drugs on you, this is considered actual possession. The illicit substance may be discovered in your hand, in your pocket, or in a backpack or purse belonging to you. You may also be charged with actual possession if law enforcement witnesses you attempting to hide or dispose of the substance. For example, if an officer sees you throw something out of your car window while you are being pulled over, you may be accused of being in actual possession of an illicit substance.

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St. Charles drug crime defense attorney

Many drug possession charges and other criminal charges are the results of law enforcement officers searching the defendant’s property. Being the subject of a police search can be extremely stressful and confusing. When a police officer asks to search your property, do you have the right to deny the request? Your rights regarding searches of your personal property can vary depending on the circumstances, so it is crucial to understand the Illinois laws regarding search and seizure. If you are charged with a crime because drugs or other contraband are found on your property, and the search was not conducted legally, the evidence discovered in the search may not be admissible in court.

Police Searches of Your Home

The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution places limits on when and how law enforcement can search an individual, his or her property, or seize contraband and other items. The Constitution states, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause…” However, in most instances, a police officer may not search or seize an individual or his or her property unless the officer has a valid search warrant signed by a judge or a valid arrest warrant. In some situations, the legal concept of “exigent circumstances” gives police the right to search a home without a warrant. A law enforcement officer has the authority to enter a home or perform a warrantless search if there is a risk of imminent danger, contraband is in plain sight, the evidence is being destroyed, or a suspect is attempting to escape.

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St. Charles drug crimes defense attorney diversion program

The state of Illinois takes drug-related crimes very seriously. A person convicted of drug trafficking, drug possession, drug manufacturing and distribution, or another drug-related offense can face years or even decades of incarceration. Fortunately, Illinois law allows some drug offenders a certain amount of leniency if they participate in a diversion program. One of the diversion programs available to drug offenders is called 410 probation. The purpose of the 410 probation diversion program is to help drug offenders avoid a permanent criminal record and lead a law-abiding life after a drug-related arrest.

Who Can Participate in the 410 Probation Program?

Not everyone is eligible for a diversion program such as 410 probation. The court will consider a number of factors to determine whether or not a defendant qualifies for participation in a diversion program. These factors most often include the defendant’s past criminal record, any drug or alcohol addictions, his or her mental health, and the circumstances of his or her offense.

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Illinois drug charges expungement attorney

It is no secret that cannabis laws are changing throughout the country, with some states legalizing the sale and use of marijuana, while others continue to incriminate those found in possession of the substance. At the end of May, Illinois joined many other states by legalizing marijuana. While the drug will soon be considered legal, there will be a variety of restrictions and regulations in place. The following are frequently asked questions and answers to act as a comprehensive guide for Illinois residents.

When and Where Can I Buy Marijuana?

Consumers will be able to purchase cannabis for recreational use starting on January 1, 2020. The legal recreational sale process will begin solely through medical marijuana dispensaries in January 2020 but will expand to new stores, processors, cultivators, and transporters in mid-2020 as the state grants additional licenses. Illinois will allow up to 295 stores to operate by 2022; however, county and municipal governments will be allowed to decide whether to allow such businesses to operate in their designated area.

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Illinois drug charges lawyer

When a child has been exposed to drugs or witnessed drug use by their parent or caregiver, the adults involved may be charged with child abuse or neglect. Child endangerment may also extend to infants who have been born with drugs in their systems. Child abuse or neglect can include any of the following scenarios:

  • Drugs are being manufactured with a child present or in a child’s home;
  • Drugs are being sold or given to a minor;
  • Minors are present during the sale or sharing of drugs between adults;
  • Caregivers are under the influence of drugs and cannot properly care for a child; and
  • Drug manufacturing ingredients are being used or stored with a child present.

Child Abuse and Neglect in Illinois

Drug-related child abuse involves an adult caregiver, whether it is a parent or other household member, or even a babysitter, using, selling, or manufacturing drugs in the child’s presence or where the child lives. This does not mean only inside of the home, but also in the garage, other outbuildings, or anywhere on the property. 

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