Monday, September 29, 2014

ILLINOIS TOUGHENS LAW ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE OFFENDERS

Starting January 1, 2015, Illinois law gives the Court new tools to discourage offenders from violating an order of protection.

Known as “Diane’s Law,” the new law enables the court to keep tabs on an offender’s whereabouts through electronic or GPS surveillance as a condition of bail. The court may also order the defendant to obtain a risk assessment and may require the offender to pay the cost of both the surveillance and the assessment.

The law is named for Diane Kephart who was murdered by an ex-boyfriend three days after renewing an order of protection.

The law protects intimate partners defined as a spouse or current or former partner in cohabitation or in a dating relationship. The law applies to defendants beyond those who have violated an order of protection including those charged with attempted first degree murder as well as both regular or aggravated forms of domestic battery, kidnapping, unlawful restraint, and stalking.

The fact you stalked or harassed someone from your computer is no defense. The law also covers cyberstalking and harassment through telephone or electronic means.

If someone is seeking an order of protection against you or you have been charged with one of the above crimes, contact an experienced criminal law attorney immediately. Do not speak to the police or third parties about your situation. What sounds like a reasonable explanation to you might give the prosecution the evidence they need to convict you.

An experienced attorney can review your case to determine your best possible defense. Even if the evidence against you is overwhelming, an attorney who is respected at the courthouse may be able to negotiate a more favorable plea agreement than you could on your own.

If you have questions about this or another related Illinois criminal or traffic matter, please contact Matt Keenan at 847-568-0160 or email matt@mattkeenanlaw.com.

See: 725 ILCS 5/110-5(f).

(Besides Skokie, Matt Keenan also serves the communities of Arlington Heights, Chicago, Deerfield, Des Plaines, Evanston, Glenview, Morton Grove, Mount Prospect, Niles, Northbrook, Park Ridge, Rolling Meadows, Wilmette and Winnetka.)

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