Criminal

The appellant in People v. Barefield, 2019 IL App (3d) 160516 appealed the dismissal of his petition for relief from judgement (filed under section 2-1401 of the Code of Civil Procedure), on the grounds that his conviction for armed habitual criminal should be vacated because the predicate offense, his conviction for aggravated unlawful use of a weapon (AUUW), was void ab initio and should also be vacated. The Appellate Court of Illinois Third District ultimately reversed the dismissal of the petition by the trial court. Barefield was charged with armed habitual criminal after having twice been convicted of AUUW, Aggravated Robbery,…
You must be fit to stand trial before you can be prosecuted. You must also be fit before sentencing or entering a plea agreement. Under Illinois law, you are not considered fit if you cannot assist in your defense or understand the nature and purposes of the proceedings against you because of your mental or physical condition. If your fitness is in question, your attorney must raise the issue before a plea is entered or before, during or after trial. In other words, you cannot claim you are unfit after you have entered a plea agreement or been sentenced. If…
The appellant in People v. Walker, 2019 IL App (3d) 170374 appealed the decision of the trial court’s order his pro se post-conviction petition on the grounds that the dismissal was erroneous. The Third District ultimately affirmed the decision of the Circuit Court. Eric D. Walker was charged with and pled guilty to aggravated battery and burglary and was sentenced to three years imprisonment in 2016. In 2017, Walker filed a pro se post-conviction petition, raising “numerous claims, many of which related to the representation [he] had received.” Id. at ¶ 6. Walker alleged that his attorney, the assistant public defender, conspired against him…
The officer pulled you over for speeding. He ran a check of your license and issued the ticket. But the officer asked you to not to leave quite yet. You were forced to wait while the officer ran some checks or maybe brought in a narcotics dog. You were then arrested for an offense other than the original speeding ticket. Can they do that? What are the limits of a police stop? An officer may stop you for one reason and investigate you for another as long as he or she does not unduly prolong the stop. Authority for the…
Clients seeking help with a DUI or another serious traffic matter often tell us that their vehicle was seized by the police at the time of their arrest and want to know whether they can get it back. When can the police seize and forfeit a vehicle? Illinois law provides for the seizure and forfeiture of vehicles in the case of certain offenses including: Felony DUI Aggravated Fleeing and Eluding Driving While Revoked (when the revocation is based on a previous conviction for DUI) Leaving the Scene of an Accident Involving Personal Injury or Death Reckless Homicide Driving While Suspended…
Three Chicago men have been charged by federal authorities with violent crimes in the city’s Lawndale neighborhood. The men – ages 37, 26 and 19 – are accused of involvement in a murder-for-hire operation that resulted in two fatal shootings. The men are each charged with conspiracy to use an interstate facility in the commission of a murder for hire, according to John R. Lausch, Jr., U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois. Other agencies participating in the arrests included the FBI, the Chicago Police Department, the Cook County Sheriff’s Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives…
Kane County Sheriff Ron Hain has instituted a series of new inmate programs. Episode 667 (Duration 34:37) The Kane County Jail’s new Diversion Program is making every effort to leave detainees better off than when they came into the jail. Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google PodcastsSpotify | Android | RSS | Direct Download APPLE PODCASTS GOOGLE PODCASTS SPOTIFY ANDROID RSS DIRECT DOWNLOAD In This Episode… “‘Go and get that bad guy’ is actually a bad way to look at our community.” — Sheriff Ron Hain Sheriff Ron Hain Ron Hain was elected Sheriff of Kane County in 2018.…
The appellant in People v. Parker, 2019 IL App (5th) 150192 appealed the decision of the Circuit Court of Washington County denying his motion for leave to file successive post-conviction petition. Leonard Parker was charged with four counts of first degree murder based on a theory of accountability related to the stabbing of a victim by a co-defendant, during the course of a robbery and residential burglary in September of 2000. Parker was 16 years old at the time of arrest. Id. at ¶ 2. Shortly thereafter, Parker entered into a negotiated plea agreement in which he pled guilty…
The appellant in People v. Roberson, 2019 IL App (1st) 170757 appealed the decision of the Circuit Court of Cook County dismising his pro se petition for relief from judgement (under section 2-1401 of the Code of Civil Procedure) on the grounds that the dismissal was premature since it was within 30 days of the petition’s filing. The Appellate Court of Illinois First District ultimately affirmed the decision of the Circuit Court of Cook County. Appellant Roberson was charged with one count of armed habitual criminal and two counts of unlawful use of a weapon by a felon, related…
You were just curious, so you called a government office and started asking questions. You wanted to know how they handle threats involving guns or bombs. Something in the nature of your questions spooked the office manager, and now you have been charged with disorderly conduct. Were your questions enough to get you convicted? What about freedom of speech? What can you do now? In Illinois, depending on what you said and how you said it, you could be convicted of disorderly conduct. (See 720 ILCS 5/26-1(a)(1)). To do so, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that…
While much media attention is focused on the opioids epidemic, fewer headlines are devoted to the resurgence of methamphetamine. The powerful stimulant has regained the popularity it had back in the 1990s and early 2000s. According to research by the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, meth-related drug arrests have increased significantly in our state in the past few years. The ICJIA says two main factors are responsible for the resurgence of meth use in Illinois: efforts to combat opioid abuse have reduced easy access to the drugs and meth has at the same time become cheaper and purer. The ICJIA…
The appellant in People v. Shaw, 2019 IL App (1st) 152994 appealed the decision of the Circuit Court of Cook County dismissing his petition for post-conviction relief, arguing that the trial court erred in dismissing his petition because he made a substantial showing of actual innocence when he presented an affidavit averring that the deceased victim had previously admitted to misidentifying him and had named another man as the offender. Germaine Shaw pled guilty and was sentenced to 28 years’ imprisonment for aggravated criminal sexual assault and 6 years’ imprisonment (to be served concurrently) for each home invasion offense,…
The answer, in most cases, is no. A change in Illinois law permits you to expunge or seal your criminal record notwithstanding any fines or fees you may owe. Before you can clear your criminal record, your case must have been terminated. As of August 10, 2018, the definition of termination does not include any outstanding financial obligations. Therefore, the court cannot deny your petition because you owe a court or government imposed debt. Once your record is sealed, the court may still permit access to any records necessary to collect the debt from you. The court may still deny…
Backed by dance-music rhythms, the raucous parties on a Chicago real estate agent’s 58-foot powerboat called Flying Lady stood out from the other floating festivities off of the downtown shore. In a recent article, the Tribune speculates that the parties might be over, however, after 44-year-old David Izsak’s arrest for bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. Federal officials seized the Flying Lady, seeking forfeiture of the Carver 570 Voyager yacht. In the indictment, they alleged that Izsak fraudulently obtained $360,000 in financing for its purchase back in 2011. The Tribune reports that Izsak faces up to 30 years in…
If you hear a siren or see the flashing lights of an emergency vehicle, it should go without saying that you have to clear the way. Illinois requires that you move to the right side curb until the vehicle passes. If the emergency vehicle is stopped and flashing its lights, you must change to a lane that is not next to the emergency vehicle. If changing lanes is not possible, you must reduce your speed. Known as Scott’s Law, these rules seek to protect police officers who are too often killed by oncoming motorists while providing emergency aid. Scott’s…
Chicago police regulations allow officers to arrest people on the basis of an investigative alert where there is probable cause to believe a suspect has committed a crime. But a recent Illinois court has now ruled this practice unconstitutional. In People v. Bass, the defendant allegedly molested a minor. Chicago police issued an investigative alert but did not apply for an arrest warrant. Three weeks later, police pulled defendant over, ran a name check then arrested him based on the alert. The court held the arrest illegal because an investigative alert allows a police supervisor—rather than a judge–to determine…