Monday, November 26, 2018

THE CRIME OF DRUG-INDUCED HOMICIDE IN ILLINOIS

Your friend overdosed on methamphetamine or heroin and died. Worse still, you gave them the drugs. Now you are charged with drug-induced homicide.

What is that offense? What can you do?

In Illinois, you can be charged with drug-induced homicide if you unlawfully deliver a controlled substance to another, and any person's death is caused by the injection, inhalation, absorption, or ingestion of any amount of that controlled substance. (See Illinois Drug Induced Homicide Law).

To prove causation, the state must show that your delivery of the drugs was a contributing cause of the death. Therefore, according to a recent Illinois case, even if the deceased had several drugs in their system, you may still be convicted if your particular drug was in the mix. (See People v Nere).

Drug-induced homicide is a Class X felony, punishable by 15 to 30 years in prison or an extended term of 30 to 60 years.

If you have been charged with drug-induced homicide or a similar crime, contact an experienced criminal law attorney immediately. An attorney can review your case for your best possible defense. As with most crimes, the state must prove you guilty of all the elements of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. Was the drug a controlled substance? Was your delivery of the drug unlawful? Did your acts actually cause the death? An attorney can probe for weaknesses in the state’s case.

An attorney can also review how the police handled your arrest. Did they have probable cause to arrest you? Was your interrogation properly handled? If not, an attorney may be able to bring a motion to suppress evidence or statements that you made.

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.)

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