Tag Archives: St. Charles criminal defense attorney

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.

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St. Charles traffic violations defense attorney

If a law enforcement officer suspects that a motorist is breaking the law, he or she will use lights and sirens to indicate that the driver must pull over for a traffic stop. If the police officer suspects the driver of driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol, he or she may ask the driver to participate in a field sobriety test or take a breathalyzer test. If the officer suspects that weapons, illegal drugs, or other contraband are in the vehicle, he or she may conduct a search of the vehicle. There are certain things that a driver should never do during a traffic stop as well as steps that drivers should always take. It is important to remember that you have certain rights during traffic stops, and doing the following may help you avoid criminal charges:

Pull Over Immediately

Being pulled over by a police officer is often the last thing you want to deal with. However, traffic stops are not optional. The Illinois Vehicle Code states that if a driver receives a “visual or audible signal” by a police officer to stop his or her vehicle and fails to do so, he or she may be charged with fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer. This offense is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail.

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St. Charles DUI defense attorney

In Illinois, it is against the law to be in actual physical control of a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If a police officer suspects you of drunk driving, you will likely be asked to complete a field sobriety test or breath test such as a Breathalyzer. If your blood alcohol content is 0.08 percent or more, or you show obvious signs of impairment, you face arrest and possible DUI prosecution. Criminal penalties for an Illinois DUI depend heavily on the circumstances of the alleged crime. If you or someone you know has been arrested for DUI, a criminal defense lawyer can help ensure that your rights are fully protected.

First-Time DUI Is Typically a Misdemeanor Charge

Most first-time Illinois DUI charges are Class A misdemeanors punishable by driver’s license suspension for one year, a fine of up to $1,000, and a possible incarceration period of up to six months. Unless certain aggravating circumstances were present, the majority of first-time DUI convictions do not result in significant jail time. Furthermore, you may be able to regain your ability to drive before the driver’s license suspension period ends via a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP) that will require you to use a breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID). 

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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:

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St. Charles drunk driving defense attorney BAIID

Many people know that being convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) can result in the loss of driving privileges in Illinois. However, you may not realize that a motorist can receive a driver’s license suspension for a DUI arrest as well. If you fail a “Breathalyzer” test or other blood alcohol content (BAC) chemical test, you will face a six-month license suspension called a statutory summary suspension. If you are asked by a law enforcement officer to take a BAC test after being arrested, and you refuse to do so, your license could be suspended for one year. Driving with a suspended license can result in severe criminal consequences. Fortunately, some individuals with a suspended driver’s license may regain their ability to legally drive if they qualify for certain driving permits and install a breath alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID) in their vehicle.

Understanding BAIIDs

A BAIID is similar to a Breathalyzer device. It is a small piece of equipment that measures the amount of alcohol on someone’s breath and uses that data to estimate the person’s BAC. Once a BAIID is installed in your vehicle, you will need to submit a breath sample by breathing into the device whenever you want to turn on the car. If your BAC is above 0.25 percent, the ignition will not work, and the automobile will not start. If you submit a breath test that is below the BAC limit, the car will start normally. You will also be required to submit breath samples throughout the duration of your trip.

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