COVID-19 Update: We Are Open 24/7 to Service Current and New Clients.

Articles Posted in Criminal defense

A man who was arrested on suspicion of domestic battery grabbed for the arresting officer’s gun, police say. Unsurprisingly, Mario Castro appeared before the criminal court judge with a black eye and his arm in a sling. The judge entered a not-guilty plea on behalf of the defendant and assigned him a public defender. 

According to the police report, Castro body-slammed his girlfriend and punched her in the face over an argument concerning a phone. Police were called to the home at 7:30 p.m. The victim told police that Castro made “rude comments” about her children so she demanded that he leave. She told police that Castro responded by body-slamming her in front of her children. 

Castro left the apartment before police arrived but returned later and the police were called again. At about 8:10 p.m., they arrived at the scene, again too late. This time, Castro had taken the woman’s cellphone and punched her in the face. Castro came back a third time, and police found him hiding in a pantry closet. Castro was asked to step out and did but he pulled away from police when they asked him to put his hands behind his back. Castro was taken down, still struggling. He managed to grab a gun magazine and strike the officer in the arm with it. He then attempted to remove the gun from the officer’s holster but was repelled in the attempt. Eventually, the police tased Castro, but the taser was not enough to prevent him from continuing to struggle. Eventually, police were able to get him in handcuffs, but Castro continued to struggle, so they sprayed him with pepper spray. 

A Cook County Judge has vacated the conviction of Chicago man, Jackie Wilson, who was framed and convicted for the murders of two Chicago police officers. Wilson maintained that he was just an innocent bystander and it was his brother who had pulled the trigger. Wilson alleged that he was tortured and framed and maintained his innocence throughout his incarceration. In addition to vacating Wilson’s conviction, the judge ordered a special prosecutor to investigate whether or not the prosecutor who convicted Wilson perjured himself or suborned perjury from a witness. 

Suborning Perjury and Perjury

Perjury is simply lying under oath. You make a claim that you know is false and present as true to a judge and jury. Defense attorneys and prosecutors both have a duty to uphold the law. Even as defense attorneys, we cannot knowingly place a client on the stand whom we know is guilty and allow that individual to make false claims before the court. When a defendant commits perjury, a second investigation is sometimes initiated into the lawyer who placed that witness on the stand. If it can be determined that the lawyer knew that their client was going to misrepresent the truth, then they are not only guilty of a disbarrable offense, but also a felony.

The holidays are a stressful time, especially this year with so many facing an uncertain future. On top of that, COVID shutdowns are causing crime to spike all over the country, especially in major cities. Chicago is among the major U.S. cities that have seen spikes in crime during the quarantine. Meanwhile, economic recessions, counterintuitively, cause crime rates to go down

But COVID has not behaved like an economic recession. In fact, the situation we are still enduring is unprecedented in the last 100 years. Still, the question remains: Why is crime spiking when fewer people are on the street?

Mental Health Issues

Female teachers having inappropriate relationships with male students grab all the headlines. However, the reverse is actually far more prevalent, and this is perhaps why it grabs fewer headlines than the same type of crime committed by females. Recently, a male teacher at Bartlett High School has been fired after reports surfaced of misconduct with students dating back to 2008. The teacher had been with the school for over 25 years. In this article, we will discuss the circumstances that led to his discharge and arrest

What Happens Now?

Currently, the situation is still under investigation. The school board reached a unanimous decision to fire the teacher and recommended that his teaching license be revoked. They simultaneously filed reports with the Illinois Department of Children and Families, the Board of Education, and forwarded the results of their investigation to the State’s attorney. Thus far, however, no sex crime charges have been filed. That could change soon.

A road rage incident went way out of control when one of the combatants grabbed the other by the hair and threw her to the ground. The state employee, Keli Calderone, pulled a sidearm that she was licensed to carry and shot the man. That man survived but sustained severe injuries as a result of the incident. Calderone was charged with attempted murder, but later, she was acquitted on the grounds of self-defense. Beforehand, however, Calderone was held before a termination committee to decide whether she was still allowed to work in her capacity with the Office of Emergency Management and Communications. The office rejected her claim of self-defense and terminated her.

The Self-Defense Argument

Self-defense arguments are really easy to make in some states (Florida) and really difficult to make in other states, like Illinois. Calderone was charged with attempted murder, but the judge who presided over her case determined that because she had been thrown to the ground, and was in a vulnerable position that left her subjected to further force, her use of her gun was justified. 

26 Westside residents are facing federal charges related to the operation of a drug hotline. The FBI says that they made numerous purchases of crack-cocaine and fentanyl-laced heroin. The operation began in the summer.

Federal authorities issued a statement that said that they will continue to vigorously prosecute anyone who distributes fentanyl-laced drugs on the streets. Over the summer and early fall, 13 were arrested on drug and weapons charges related to the operation. Another 13 now face charges related to conspiracy, trafficking, and other charges. The complaint names Dexstin Bryant, a 31-year-old from Chicago, as the ringleader. Bryant allegedly distributed 124 grams of fentanyl-mixed heroin and 38 grams of cocaine. 

The Convenience of Delivery

Crystal Lundberg told a federal judge that getting charged with wire fraud had changed her life for the better. She said that she found legitimate employment and was growing as a person. But federal authorities have charged Lundberg in another scheme to defraud. This time, the victim was the federal government that disbursed $150,000 in loans to Lundberg’s business to keep her payroll going. 

Federal prosecutors now say Lundberg took the loans that were earmarked for COVID relief and spent the money on vacations, legal bills, and other personal expenditures while simultaneously delaying her surrender date to the Bureau of Prisons.

Other problems for Lundberg include Facebook posts she made indicating that her plan was to spend the federal relief money until the feds came and arrested her. Obviously, federal authorities believe that Lundberg wanted one last hurrah before serving her prison sentence. 

Akeem Kosoko and his brother, who worked as a mailman, had been stealing money from the mail for months before the Trump administration announced it would be sending $1,200 checks to every American. Kosoko, who called the stimulus funds “Trump checks,” knew that this would be a great time to cash in. The federal government, however, caught up with them when they tried to sell several Trump checks for a reported $5,000. Now, the brothers are facing charges of conspiring to steal U.S. mail and stealing government funds.

Kosoko was believed to be among several post office employees who would steal tax refunds, social security checks, and more from the U.S. postal system. The checks would then be exchanged for cash to those who had the ability to anonymously cash them. 

The Anatomy of a Fraud

A Chicago man is facing three Class-X felonies after police found between 100 and 400 grams of cocaine and a stolen weapon. 48-year-old Kevin L. Dobbins will face this list of charges:

  • Armed violence
  • Being a habitual criminal in possession of a weapon

You have heard of Bonnie and Clyde? Micky and Mallory Knox? Thelma and Louise? Well, get ready for Violet Greco and Glenesha Currie, the interracial lesbian couple who knocked over five Chicago banks before leading authorities on a high-speed chase into Indiana. What they did not realize was that the FBI had bugged their getaway vehicle. 

When the pair attempted to rob the PNC Bank, authorities were on them in a hurry. The couple fled, leading authorities on a 100mph chase that ended in Indiana after their car ran out of gas. 

Federal Charges Filed Against the Defendants

Contact Information