Being an armed habitual criminal in Illinois is actually a crime. The essence of this charge is unlawful possession of a firearm by someone who has a pretty serious and extensive criminal history.

720 ILCS 5/24-1.7. Armed habitual criminal.

“A person commits the offense of being an armed habitual criminal if he or she receives, sells, possesses, or transfers any firearm after having been convicted a total of 2 or more times of any combination of the following offenses:

(1) a forcible felony as defined in Section 2-8 of this Code;

(2) unlawful use of a weapon by a felon; aggravated unlawful use of a weapon; aggravated discharge of a firearm; vehicular hijacking; aggravated vehicular hijacking; aggravated battery of a child as described in Section 12-4.3 or subdivision (b)(1) of Section 12-3.05; intimidation; aggravated intimidation; gunrunning; home invasion; or aggravated battery with a firearm as described in Section 12-4.2 or subdivision (e)(1), (e)(2), (e)(3), or (e)(4) of Section 12-3.05; or

(3) any violation of the Illinois Controlled Substances Act or the Cannabis Control Act that is punishable as a Class 3 felony or higher.”

720 ILCS 5/24-1.7(a).

Armed Habitual Criminal Is A Class X Felony.

“Being an armed habitual criminal is a Class X felony.” – 720 ILCS 5/24-1.7(b).

Learn more about

Forcible Felony

In Illinois a…

“‘Forcible felony’ means treason, first degree murder, second degree murder, predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, aggravated criminal sexual assault, criminal sexual assault, robbery, burglary, residential burglary, aggravated arson, arson, aggravated kidnaping, kidnaping, aggravated battery resulting in great bodily harm or permanent disability or disfigurement and any other felony which involves the use or threat of physical force or violence against any individual.”  

720 ILCS 5/2-8.

Hierarchy Of Gun Possession Crimes In Illinois

You can see, an armed habitual criminal charge requires that a person have 2 serious felonies in their criminal history. In fact, armed habitual criminal is the most serious of the gun possession crimes in Illinois.

The chart below depicts where

See Also