The night of September 1st was a scary one for one Chicago four-year-old, reports the Chicago Sun Times. The child was left inside of his mother’s Kia Sportage, which was left running, when it was stolen from outside of a restaurant on South Shore Drive. The suspect, a male who exited the restaurant, reportedly jumped into the running vehicle and took off with the boy still in the back seat, before crashing the car just a few blocks away. Thankfully, the child was unharmed, but the suspect still remains at large.

While those who live in Chicago are no strangers to the rash of vehicle theft that runs rampant in this city, it’s commonality does not make it any less dangerous. In situations like the one described above, a child could’ve lost his life due to the irresponsibility of the theft suspect.

Vehicle Theft in Illinois

Vehicle theft is a serious crime, no matter where you are located in the country, but auto theft in Illinois is taken even more seriously than in most states. According to 720 ILCS 5/16-1, a person commits theft when they knowingly engage in:

  • Exerting unauthorized control over another person’s property
  • Obtaining control over another’s property via deception
  • Threatening the owner in order to gain control of his or her property, or
  • Obtaining control over stolen property that you know is stolen or that you have reason to know is stolen.

While most people want to avoid criminal convictions if they can, the severity of a vehicle theft is weighted by how valuable the vehicle is. A vehicle worth less than 10,000 dollars can carry that charge of a Class 3 felony, with the punishment of up to five years in prison.

If the vehicle is especially valuable, like say a sports car or a classic car, the consequences of stealing it could be even more dire, such as a prison sentence between 7-15 years depending upon the vehicle’s value, as well an even more serious Class 2 or 1 felony charge.

How To Deal With Stolen Vehicle Charges

No one steals a vehicle for no reason–it’s likely that even the suspect mentioned in the news story above had his reasons, even if it didn’t turn out successfully for him. If you’ve ever been accused of a criminal charge, you know the damage it can do to your reputation even if you are found to be innocent, and no one should deal with this type of situation lightly. However, hiring a talent criminal defense attorney may help to turn the tides in your favor.

Vadim A. Glozman, Esq., is one of the top criminal defense lawyers in Chicago, and he has defended hundreds of clients from corrupt criminal charges, leading to lighter sentences and sometimes even case dismissals.

If you’re worried about a stolen vehicle charge or any other criminal charge coming to haunt you, call our offices today to set up your free introduction with a skilled attorney who can help you.