Monday, March 27, 2017

EXTRADITION TO ILLINOIS: VIOLATION OF PROBATION

If you violate the terms of your out of state probation, you can be extradited to the state where you originally had the problem.

Extradition means you could be arrested in your current state and brought back to face charges in the original state. The county prosecutor in the original state often decides whether to extradite, and it is impossible to predict their decision in any given case.

If you are at risk of extradition to Illinois, you should contact an experienced Illinois criminal law attorney immediately. An attorney can review the facts of your case for your best possible defense. For example, an attorney may help clear a problem underlying your original case. Sometimes a violation of probation is the result of miscommunication between court agencies, and an attorney may help sort this out.

Even if you violated probation and there was no mistake, an attorney can still help. For instance, an attorney, who is respected in the courthouse, may be able to negotiate a more favorable plea agreement than you might get 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.

(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.).

Thursday, March 16, 2017

POSSESSION OF BURGLARY TOOLS IN ILLINOIS

You need not commit a burglary to be charged with a crime. The mere possession of burglary tools may be enough.

Under Illinios law, you may be convicted of a Class 4 felony, punishable by one to three years in prison, if you possess any key, tool, instrument, device or explosive suitable for breaking into a building or motor vehicle or any place intended for safekeeping property. You must have entered the building or vehicle intending to commit the felony or theft. Your intent to commit such a crime may be inferred if you have a key designed for picking locks.

If you are charged in Illinois with possession of burglary tools or similar offense, contact a criminal law attorney immediately. An experienced attorney can review your case for its best possible defense. As with most crimes, the state must prove you guilty of each element of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. Can the state show you possess the necessary intent? If the police lacked probable cause to search you, an attorney may petition the court to suppress the evidence resulting from the search.

Even if the police acted properly and the evidence against you is overwhelming, an attorney who is respected in 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.

Source: Possession of Burglary Tools.

(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.)

Monday, March 6, 2017

CAN MY PAST SEXUAL OFFENSES BE USED TO PROVE A CURRENT CRIME IN ILLINOIS?

Past crimes generally cannot be used to prove a current offense except under certain circumstances. One major exception, however, is that Illinois law specifically allows the use of prior sex offenses to show a tendency to commit that type of crime.

With most crimes, your past offenses cannot be used to show bad character and thus a likelihood to commit crime. However, they can be used to show intent, modus operandi, identity, motive, absence of mistake and any material fact other than propensity that is relevant to the case. For example, a past crime can show you had a motive to murder a key witness, or that you knew how to hot wire cars because you’d done it before.

In Illinois, however, your past sexual misconduct can be used in crimes involving predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, aggravated criminal sexual assault, criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual abuse, criminal sexual abuse, child pornography, aggravated child pornography, criminal transmission of HIV or child abduction. (See 725 ILCS 115-7.3).

Even then the court must consider if the past crimes evidence is more likely to prejudice the jury than would be helpful as proof. To make that determination, the court considers: (1) closeness in time between the past sexual offense and the current crime, (2) the degree of factual similarity or (3) other relevant facts and circumstances.

In one recent Illinois case, People v Arze, the appellate court upheld the use of prior crimes against a family doctor who had sexually abused his patients. His past offenses took place around the same time. The crimes were factually similar because the defendant touched the victims on their private parts in the exam room while they were partially undressed. Because only two past crimes were admitted, the jury would not be overwhelmed or prejudiced by the number of past crimes.

If you have been charged with a sex offense or other crime, contact an experienced criminal law attorney immediately. Do not discuss your crime with the police or third parties. Any attempt to explain yourself might give the prosecution the evidence they need to convict you. An experienced attorney can review your case for your best possible defense. Even if the evidence against you is overwhelming, an attorney who is respected in the court house 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.

(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.)