The Law on Vigilante Justice in Chicago

jaanus-jagomagi-377699-unsplash-copy-200x300Chicago is notorious for its growing crime rate. This has resulted in strict Illinois laws to curb violent crime enacted in the recent past. While the crime rate does not show any signs of abating, it has led to a surge in vigilantes in the region. Vigilante justice is the action taken by a single person or a group outside of the police department to enforce law and order. While vigilantes like Superman and Batman are welcomed on screen, they are not so welcomed in real life.

Vigilante Justice for Protecting Neighborhoods

In a city known for its rampant crime, having vigilantes makes sense, but this is acceptable only when the vigilantes limit themselves. Resorting to violent retaliatory crime is a surefire way to be punished.

In fact, Chicago Police are supportive of the idea as long as the vigilantes avoid hostile conflict. Programs like neighborhood watch help alert the police to trouble brewing in the region.

From drug dealing to gangs clashing, citizens help keep an eye out for miscreants. A study conducted on such vigilantes indicates a significant reduction in crime rate.

Getting into Trouble Over Vigilantism

However, being over-enthusiastic about fighting crime can end in trouble. Using violence to curb criminals can result in a whole lot of charges including:

  • Sexual assault
  • Assault or battery while using force during the conflict
  • An expensive civil suit filed by the defendant or a relative of the defendant

You may also be subject to physical harm by the criminals themselves or be caught in the crossfire of something that involves a larger network. According to Illinois law, any individual can arrest another person if the crime or violation of law has reasonable grounds.

If you are a person pursuing vigilante justice, you should know about felony and misdemeanor laws. In case of someone committing a misdemeanor, you will be in trouble for taking action against that person. If it is a felony the person is committing, you can apprehend the criminal. You need to report the incident to the police and deliver the suspected criminal to a police station or magistrate.

If you arrest a suspect or cause bodily harm, a suit may be filed against you. If convicted, the sentence may range from a prison term of four to 15 years, in the case of felony charges. This may further increase in case of aggravating factors.

To avoid serious sentence terms and hefty fines, you need legal help. In such a case, you need the assistance of an experienced criminal defense lawyer like David L. Freidberg.

Legal Protection

When you are charged with an act of vigilante justice in Chicago, your first step should be to get legal help. Approach a reliable criminal defense lawyer. Whether it is a felony, misdemeanor, or any other type of crime you are being accused of, a reputable lawyer can help.

A court trial and hearing is a long, drawn-out process. You should avoid such a fate at all costs. This is where legal guidance is of importance. If convicted, you stand to lose many opportunities. You will find it difficult to gain entry into educational programs or a job. With a reliable attorney, you will receive the help you need to protect your civil rights.

Engage an experienced and professional defense attorney such as David L. Freidberg. The law office of David L. Freidberg has more than two decades of experience in Illinois law and criminal code. Contact David. L.Freidberg at (312) 560-7100 for a free consultation. The office is available for contact 24/7, ensuring you get the best results.

(image courtesy of jaanus-jagomagi)