SUMMER CAMP MUSIC FESTIVAL IS SCHEDULED FOR MAY 24, 25, 26, & 27th, 2018 IN CHILLICOTHE, IL (JUST OUTSIDE PEORIA, IL).
Remember: POSSESSION OF CANNABIS OVER 10 GRAMS IS STILL A CRIMINAL OFFENSE IN ILLINOIS AS OF 7/29/2016. Possession of less than 10 grams of cannabis is a civil violation with a maximum “settlement fee” of $200 (usually a ticket for $120 that does not require a court appearance unless you are cited with other crimes). However, possession of cannabis 10 grams or more can lead to criminal charges against you as well as for the unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia (a Class A misdemeanor with a mandatory minimum fine of $750)! Punishments range from:
- Between 10 grams and 30 grams: Class B misdemeanor, punishable up to 180 days in jail and a $1500 fine, plus up to 2 years on probation.
- Between 30 grams and 100 grams: Class A misdemeanor, punishable up to 365 days in jail and a $2500 fine, plus up to 2 years on probation.
- Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance (cocaine, LSD, psilocybin, Ecstacy/Molly, Heroin, Adderall, methamphetamine, etc): Possession of ANY amount if a Class 4 Felony, punishable up to 1-3 years in prison, up to $25,000 in fines and costs, and you risk drug asset forfeiture.
- Unlawful Possession of Cannabis with Intent to Deliver: 2.5 grams or less: Class B misdemeanor. 2.5 to 10 grams: Class A misdemeanor. 10-30 grams: Class 4 felony. 30-500 grams: Class 3 felony (2-5 years in prison). 500 grams to 2000 grams: Class 2 felony: (3-7 years in prison). 2000-5000 grams: Class 1 felony. More than 500 grams: Class X felony.
- Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver: Usually a higher class felony (Class 2, 1 or X) punishable from 3 years in prison to 30 years (and even as high as 60 years depending on the amount of controlled substance and if a firearm is found in possession of the alleged offender).
IF YOU OR A LOVED ONE HAS BEEN ARRESTED: CALL ATTORNEY JEFF HALL DIRECTLY AT (309) 231 – 9980!
COUNTIES TO LOOK OUT FOR WITH HEAVY POLICE PRESENCE
ROADS TO BE CAREFUL TRAVELING ON: Illinois Route 29, I-74, I-39, I-80, I-180, Route 89, Route 18, Route 71.
Having first been held in 2001 with around 1,000 in attendance, the festival has grown to over 15,000 attendees, hosting more than 100 bands on 6 stages over 4 days. With any large crowds, you’ll have many different types of people converge on the area. While most are law abiding citizens, some choose to participate in illegal activities, such as drug usage, drug dealing, sexual abuse of minors, etc.
In 2011, out of nearly 20,000 people, only 61 arrests were made – 31 resulted in felony charges. To read more about 2011 arrests, click: Summer Camp Arrests 2011. That is a significantly low number. Nevertheless, it’s still important to remember that Summer Camp has a police presence that you may not witness firsthand until it’s too late.
In 2012 through 2017, there was an increased number of arrests. 2012 was an eventful year with arrests increasing exponentially. To learn more about 2012 arrests, click: 2012 Summer Camp Arrest Numbers. One of the 10 cases dismissed was a case that Hall, Rustom & Fritz LLC attorney Jeff Hall challenged and the judge dismissed four Class 3 Felony drug charges against a citizen visiting the Summer Camp Music Festival in 2011. In 2017, there was a slight reduction in arrests since Cannabis was decriminalized on 7/31/16.
Police are increasing their presence each year at and around the festival.
Remember the following:
IF YOU BRING MORE THAN 15 GRAMS OF COCAINE, MDMA, HEROIN, ETC. AND THERE IS EVIDENCE YOU INTEND TO DELIVER (POSSESS MORE THAN A PERSONAL AMOUNT, HAVE SCALES, SELL TO AN UNDERCOVER, ETC.) YOU WILL LIKELY GO TO PRISON EVEN IF YOU ARE A FIRST OFFENDER. Peoria County prosecutors do not take kindly to festival-goers bringing illicit drugs into Peoria County. Even if you are a first offender, have never been arrested, or have no significant arrest/criminal history, if you are caught with over 15 grams of a controlled substance with the intent to deliver, it is a CLASS X FELONY and probation is NOT permitted by law. That means, the best offer prosecutors are usually willing to offer is BOOTCAMP (impact incarceration) but you will be convicted of a felony and your freedom will be taken away.
POLICE ARE ACTIVELY PATROLLING THE FESTIVAL AND HAVE MANY UNDER COVER OFFICERS ASKING FOR DRUGS. If you walk around the festival yelling “doses,” you are an idiot and will likely get caught. They will also try to entice you to sell to them saying, “come on man, I just need one for the day.” Don’t be an idiot. Don’t see drugs and especially do not sell to an undercover officer. Many undercover agents take the ruse very seriously, not showering for a week, growing an excessive amount of facial/body hair, and smelling like Death needs a shower. Be wary of who you talk to and try really hard not to sell drugs.
SECURITY OFFICERS AT THE ENTRANCE WILL THOROUGHLY SEARCH YOU AND REPORT YOU TO POLICE IF THEY FIND ANYTHING ILLEGAL. If they find something illegal, assert your right to an attorney as soon as possible and do not try to run from police. That will add another charge of “resisting arrest” to your rap sheet and it’s a Class A misdemeanor with either 100 mandatory public service hours or 48 hours in jail and a permanent conviction on your record (court supervision is NOT eligible for resisting a police officer).
POLICE WILL PULL YOU OVER FOR ANY AMOUNT OF SPEED OVER THE LIMIT. Be aware of your speed at all times. If police pace your vehicle (drive at your speed to clock you) or clock your speed with a radar or LIDAR, that is typically very strong “reasonable suspicion” to justify a traffic stop. From there, if a drug dog is nearby, they will have it walk around your vehicle and the dog will likely signal to officers, allowing them to search your vehicle, even if it takes hours.
IF YOU SEE SIGNS FOR POLICE ENFORCEMENT ZONES AHEAD, IF YOU PULL OFF AT THE EXIT BEFORE, THERE WILL LIKELY BE POLICE AT THAT EXIT READY TO STOP YOU OR APPROACH YOU. Law enforcement become more creative with ways to trick you to fall into their trap. For example, they will set up “Safety Check Enforcement Zones” to make sure you are wearing your seatbelt and your car is properly equipped. They’ll put the signs up just before the exits for a REST AREA. Not wanting to go through the safety zone, vehicles pull off to the rest area. Here, the officers will have drug sniffing dogs that will walk directly up to your parked vehicle, signal to the officer the dog has sniffed narcotics, and they will search your vehicle EVEN WITHOUT YOUR APPROVAL. Be smart. DON’T TRAVEL WITH NARCOTICS. Chances are, you will be caught.
Police may set a “ruse” checkpoint on the highway or interstate. If you see signs that there is a safety checkpoint ahead, you should simply follow the traffic laws, drive through the checkpoint, and if they ask to search your vehicle, politely refuse and then calculate how long it takes for a canine to walk and signal to your vehicle. The timing is important. You should also try to record the entire incident on a cell phone camera or regular camera so we can have an accurate depiction of what happened to you.
Also, think twice before you decide to avoid a roadblock after driving a close proximity to it. Recent case law in IL held that police can pull you over if they reasonably believe you are avoiding the roadblock. Courts perform a “totality of the circumstances” analysis in determining if the police stop was lawful. Most judges find this type of traffic stop is perfectly okay so keep that in mind if you are trying to turn around, perform a U-turn, reverse away from the roadblock, etc. Police may have the right to pull you over without you violating any traffic law. See the IL Supreme Court Case, People v. Timmsen by clicking the link: http://www.illinoiscourts.gov/opinions/SupremeCourt/2016/118181.pdf
MAKE SURE ALL YOUR PASSENGERS, INCLUDING THE DRIVER, ARE WEARING THEIR SEAT BELTS PROPERLY. It is perfectly lawful for a police officer to pull a vehicle over if the officer reasonably believes any of the passengers are not wearing their seat belt properly. This means the belt must be properly affixed with the shoulder harness across the chest and the waist belt properly buckled. REMEMBER: BUCKLE UP ALL PASSENGERS!
DO NOT HAVE ANYTHING DANGLING FROM YOUR REAR-VIEW MIRROR. In Illinois, an officer has lawful authority to pull your vehicle over if he/she suspects that whatever you have dangling from your rear-view mirror is obstructing your view. While it may not be enough evidence for the State to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt that a pine-tree air freshener obstructed your view, it is enough to justify the stop. After they stop you, if they suspect other crimes are afoot, they can and will investigate.
DO NOT HAVE ANY TRAILER BALL HITCHES THAT COULD OBSTRUCT A POLICE OFFICER’S VIEW OF YOUR REAR LICENSE PLATE GIVES POLICE AUTHORITY TO PULL YOU OVER TO “INVESTIGATE” AND COULD LEAD TO A SEARCH OF YOUR VEHICLE.
LICENSE PLATE COVERS ARE NOT LEGAL IN ILLINOIS. If you have a clear cover over your plate, police will pull you over for it. Remove anything from covering your license plates.
ILLINOIS LAW REQUIRES VEHICLES TO HAVE FRONT LICENSE PLATES AS WELL AS REAR LICENSE PLATES. If you have an out-of-state vehicle and your home-state does not require front license plates, police in IL can still pull you over to investigate “why” you do not have a front license plate. Don’t give them a reason to pull you over.
OBEY ALL TRAFFIC CONTROL DEVICES. Remember the following laws when driving into Illinois. If you forget these laws, you are simply giving the police reasons to pull you over.
- Do not enter an intersection or cross over the stop line if the light is red. Police can pull you over if your vehicle is as much as 1 inch over the stop line while the light is red.
- Do not speed in excess of the posted speed limits, even if it’s 1-2 mph over the limit. This is discussed above. Speeding is a strict liability offense, meaning, if the police observe your vehicle traveling even 1 mph over the limit, that is enough to pull you over to investigate.
- Signal at least 100 feet before turning at an intersection. This is an easily forgotten law. It’s better to signal early than too late.
- Make a complete stop for at least 2 seconds at the stop line before a stop sign. No rolling stops!
- Make sure to signal EVERY lane change.
- Make sure you are not following another vehicle too closely.
- Remember Scott’s Law: If you see a police or emergency vehicle on either side of the roadway, you must, prior to passing, reduce your speed and, if able to be done safely, change lanes into the adjacent lane furthest away from the emergency vehicle.
- If you are making a right turn, IL law requires you to turn into the right lane, closest to the right-side curb. You cannot turn right into the left lane of travel. That is an offense that gives law enforcement the right to pull you over.
- POLICE OFFICERS WILL ASK TO SEARCH YOUR VEHICLE. If you are pulled over for a traffic offense, the police officer may have suspicions and will likely ask you if he/she can search your vehicle. Please click HERE to learn more about your rights in Illinois if a police officer asks you if they can have permission to search your vehicle. Police officers can search your vehicle under certain circumstances. It is your job to know your rights and what response to give the police. Under present Illinois law as of 2012, police officers can search your vehicle if they:
- Have a valid search warrant
- Notice something illegal in plain view in your vehicle
- Have valid consent from the driver or someone with the authority to grant consent
- Arrest and detain you for a crime.
- The drug sniffing canine positively alerts to your vehicle
The conversation to search the vehicle occurs around the 7:30 minute mark. The entire video is educational to watch but it is rather long (nearly 18 minutes).
- IF YOU CONSENT TO THE SEARCH, IT IS INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT TO SUCCESSFULLY CHALLENGE THE SEARCH IN COURT. For example, a typical interaction goes like this: Officer: “You don’t have any bombs, weapons, or anything illegal in your vehicle, do you?” You: “No, nothing like that or illegal.” Officer: “Then you wouldn’t mind allowing me to search your vehicle?” You: “No, I don’t mind.” This is a consensual search and you will likely be unsuccessful in court if you challenge the search.
- MAKE SURE THE DRIVER AND PASSENGERS PAY ATTENTION TO THE DRUG SNIFFING DOG WHEN WALKING AROUND THE VEHICLE. According to a recent study, drug sniffing dogs would only signal accurately 44% of the time. Read the article summarizing the study done by the Chicago Tribune. You will want as many eyes watching that dog as you can. If you choose to challenge the dog’s signal, you will want witnesses to testify at the hearing on your behalf. The more SOBER witnesses, the better for your case.
- PAY ATTENTION TO HOW LONG IT TAKES FOR THE CANINE OFFICER AND THE DRUG SNIFFING DOG TO ARRIVE AT THE SCENE. While a police officer is allowed to have a drug sniffing dog walk around your vehicle, they cannot do so if it “unreasonably prolongs the stop.” Courts have not set a fine-line time limit as to how long is “unreasonably prolonging.” Courts will look to see when the “business portion” of the stop concluded. For example: If you are pulled over and the officer gives you a warning ticket and says you are free to leave, then he asks if you will consent to a search, you then say “no” and they say they are calling the canine to the scene, a court would likely conclude the business portion of the stop ended when he gave you the warning. Depending on when the business portion of the stop is concluded, the courts routinely give minutes on the clock. If it goes beyond 10-20 minutes, you could likely be successful if you challenge on that basis.
- ALWAYS REMAIN CALM, BE POLITE, AND ASK IF YOU ARE UNDER ARREST. Under Illinois law, you have the right to remain silent and not answer any questions if you are placed under arrest. Therefore, it is best that you establish whether or not you are under arrest as early as possible. If the officer is not allowing you to leave, ask the officer if you are under arrest. If he/she says you are not under arrest, then ask “Am I free to leave?” If the officer says “no,” you are arguably under arrest and your constitutional rights attach. Politely tell the officer that if you are not free to leave, then you’d like to speak to your attorney.
HERE IS A VIDEO DEMONSTRATING A PROPER WAY TO DEAL WITH A TRAFFIC STOP. Note, most police officers do not act like this police officer in the video; Pay attention to the driver of the vehicle and watch how he acts and responds. Disclaimer: Not every stop will be exactly like this video demonstrates. Also, this video is cheesy.
Note the driver made no admissions of guilt and asked early on whether or not he was under arrest and/or free to leave. Most police officers will check the identification of the passengers and run them for warrant checks as well. This could take time depending on how quickly it takes the officer to locate each person in his/her computer system. During this time, remain silent and obey lawful orders.
IF POLICE OFFICERS SEARCH YOUR VEHICLE AND FIND ILLEGAL DRUGS, THEY CAN DETAIN YOUR VEHICLE AND THE COUNTY STATE’S ATTORNEY’S OFFICE COULD AND LIKELY WILL INITIATE VEHICLE FORFEITURE PROCEEDINGS.
- Under Illinois’ Drug Asset Forfeiture Statute, authorities can forfeit and take over ownership of your vehicle if you are found in violation of the Statute. The statute can be read at: Illinois Drug Asset Forfeiture Act. It is fairly difficult to win your vehicle back in these hearings because there are only a certain number of defenses you can raise. In Peoria County, they typically initiate vehicle forfeiture proceedings on nearly all vehicles seized under the law.
UNDERCOVER POLICE OFFICERS WILL BE PATROLLING INSIDE THE FESTIVAL.
- BE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS AND DO NOT TRUST PEOPLE YOU DON’T KNOW. Summer Camp is a safe place. Violent crimes are few and far between. Drug crimes are more prevalent and you should be aware that an undercover police officer could catch you doing something illegal without you knowing. Be careful as to who you interact with and try to enjoy the music in the company of people you personally know.
- YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT. ANYTHING YOU SAY WILL BE USED AGAINST YOU IN COURT. Always remember your right to remain silent. Nothing you say typically helps you. Remain polite but do not forget your rights.
- IF SOMEONE YOU KNOW IS ARRESTED AROUND THE FESTIVAL, THEY WILL LIKELY BE TAKEN TO THE PEORIA COUNTY JAIL. If they are arrested on felony charges, they will likely spend the night in jail, depending on when bonding court is scheduled that day. After the arrest takes place and the person is booked, the Peoria County Prosecutors review the police reports to determine if they are going to charge the case as a felony or a misdemeanor. If they charge it as a misdemeanor, they will likely be released at a pre-determined bond or on a Notice to Appear (NTA). These bond amounts range between $100 and $500. A Notice to Appear is basically a personal recognizance bond. There is also a “Sheriff’s Fee” around $22.50 that will be added to the total. The jail is located at 301 North Maxwell Road, Peoria, IL 61604. If you are going to bond out your friend or family member, you will need to go to the “bonding” part of the jail. There will be signs posted to direct you.
- IF YOU ARE ARRESTED IN A NEIGHBORING COUNTY CLOSE TO PEORIA, HERE IS OTHER JAIL CONTACT INFORMATION FOR YOUR QUICK REVIEW:
- IF YOU ARE ARRESTED AND CHARGED WITH A FELONY, YOU WILL NOT BE RELEASED FROM JAIL UNTIL A JUDGE SETS YOUR BOND. The authorities can hold you up to 48 hours without charging you. Typically, a decision is made within 48 hours and you go before a judge – usually on video transmission from the jail to the courthouse. Depending on the severity of the crime, you should plan on bonding out of jail between $500 and $10,000. Make sure you have emergency contacts memorized in case your phone is not accessible. You can obtain more bonding information about the Peoria County Sheriff’s Department by visiting: http://www.peoriacounty.org/sheriff.
IF YOU ARE ARRESTED, YOU SHOULD SPEAK TO AN ATTORNEY AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. Action can be taken immediately on your behalf so it’s imperative you act quickly.
HALL, RUSTOM & FRITZ LLC SUMMER CAMP CLIENT UPDATE:
CASE DISMISSED! 4 Counts of a Class 3 Felony DISMISSED.
If you have further questions, please visit our website at www.centralillinoislawyers.com and complete our online submission form. Or, you can call our office at 309-699-4691 or email us JEFF HALL at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jeff Hall is managing partner at Hall, Rustom & Fritz LLC and concentrates his law practice in Criminal Law, DUI & Traffic law, driver’s license reinstatement hearings and criminal record expungements.
If you have a legal question, email Jeff Hall.