Articles Posted in Weapons Charges

hajran-pambudi-403848-copy-300x199Bernard Harvey, an Indianapolis man, has been charged with unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon the day after he discharged it outside a VA hospital several times before entering the hospital. This, of course, created a panic as the man entered with the semi-automatic rifle. No one was harmed during the event.

Harvey will be charged in federal court and under federal law for restrictions involving felons who illegally possess weapons. 

Felon in Possession of a Firearm

lefteris-kallergis-j1GiPlvSGWI-unsplash-copy-300x200Prosecutors say that 15-year-old Javon Wilson was shot to death over a pair of Air Jordan sneakers. According to his sister, Khaliyah Wilson, two teenagers brandishing guns came knocking on her door to recover the sneakers. The court has barred prosecutors from mentioning the fact that Javon Wilson is the grandson of 12-term congressman Danny Davis. The alleged gunmen, Tariq Harris and Dijae Banks, were 16 and 17 at the time of the shooting.

According to reports, Jeremy Murphy, another brother of the Wilsons had traded a pair of pants for the sneakers on a temporary basis. Banks had come to reclaim the sneakers but Javon Wilson would not return them without first getting the pants. The whole thing went sideways when Khaliyah Wilson attempted to kick the boys out. The argument turned into a fist fight and eventually, one of the boys pulled a gun and fired at Javon Wilson. The bullet entered into his neck where it struck an artery. The boy died there.

What Will Happen to These Boys?

matt-popovich-60437-copy-300x162A man was charged with attempted murder after a shootout in South Shore on the night of the Chicago mayoral election. 38-year-old Flamingo Jones was charged with attempted first-degree murder of a police officer. As stated by Cook County prosecutors, on February 26th at 7:30 p.m., police in plain clothes sitting in an unmarked cruiser were investigating an individual wanted on an arrest warrant. During the investigation, they saw Jones on the 7400 block of South Bennett Avenue.

Jones fled on foot after seeing the officers, who were wearing ballistic vests and badges that identified them as police. The officers gave chase, with one of them catching up to Jones. The officer saw Jones holding a firearm and ordered Jones to drop the weapon. Jones continued to run, jumping over a fence with the gun in hand.

According to Assistant State’s Attorney Jamie Santini, the officer feared for his life and discharged his weapon but did not strike Jones. As he emerged from an alley, Jones aimed his weapon toward the officer, at which point the officer fired at Jones again. Jones fell to the ground and shot at the officer. He then fired at uniformed police as they arrived on the scene. The uniformed officers returned fire, shooting Jones in the feet.

david-von-diemar-745969-unsplash-copy-200x300Any case involving the use of a deadly weapon like a knife, shotgun, or other firearm is taken quite seriously in Chicago. In 2016, there were over 1,400 deaths in Illinois that were the result of firearms. The use of a deadly weapon during the commission of a crime inevitably increases the severity of the sentence given to the accused. This will include criminal acts of domestic violence, assault, rape, and sexual assault.

A criminal defense attorney in Chicago can discuss the laws that relate to weapons charges and provide counsel about the ideal strategy for your defense.

New Gun Laws in Illinois

quentin-kemmel-445082-copy-300x200The state of Illinois has some of the harshest penalties for weapon violations in the country. However, if you possess a valid FOID (Firearm Owner’s Identification) card, you are allowed to own a gun. It is important to keep in mind that having a FOID card does not mean you are legally permitted to carry a gun with you at all times.

Unless your gun is in an appropriate case, in a condition where it can not be fired, and you are on your way to the firing range or moving, it is best not to carry a gun, especially in Chicago. To do so, you will need a concealed carry permit, and even then there are circumstances and locations in which you are not allowed to bring a weapon.

If you are facing weapons charges, contact a gun crime defense lawyer to help you with your case.

jeremiah-higgins-792687-unsplash-copy-300x225A man who was shot during a fight on the red line has been charged with aggravated battery.

Chicago police said that while fighting, one man shot the other in the stomach. The victim, 38-year-old Roy Lee, was able to wrestle the gun away and beat the shooter with it. Both were taken to the hospital.

In a bizarre turn of events, Lee was charged with aggravated battery/use of a deadly weapon. The man who shot Lee had a license to carry a concealed firearm. At this point, it is unclear if the shooter will face charges, as well.

quentin-kemmel-445082-copy-300x200As controversy surrounding gun violence and the Second Amendment ramps up across the country, both the federal and state governments are feeling pressure to crack down with tighter gun regulations. From the outside, Illinois appears to be ahead of the curve. Historically, Illinois boasts some of the strictest gun control laws in the United States. Illinois is one of seven states that requires permits or licenses in order to buy any class of firearm, along with California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Massachusetts, and New Jersey. Furthermore, and maybe more surprisingly, Illinois is one of only five states that require a waiting period to buy any type of firearm. According to The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, which tracks gun laws nationwide, Illinois earned a “B+” for its gun laws. However, California scored even better than Illinois, earning a grade of “A” with what are considered to be the strictest gun laws in the country.

The Illinois gun laws are largely attributed to the high volume of crimes committed with firearms in and around the Chicagoland area. From an outsider’s perspective, the number of crimes committed with guns in Chicago in comparison to the strict requirements for ownership do not add up. However, it is important to note that several surrounding states, including Indiana, have some of the weakest firearm laws in the country. Chicago’s proximity to these states makes it easier to bypass the Illinois regulations and obtain illegal firearms.

In Chicago, statistics show that homicides account for a large number of crimes committed with a firearm. After taking a closer look, it would seem that an overwhelming majority of homicides committed with a firearm come at the hands of repeat gun offenders.

sebastian-pichler-25154-copy-300x200Recently, a Chicago judge was charged with a Class B misdemeanor offense. Cook County Judge Joseph Claps was walking in the courthouse lobby when a gun fell out of his jacket pocket. The judge proceeded to pick up the gun and place it in his pants. Security cameras caught the incident on tape and the Sheriff’s office took a report.

Although Judge Claps’ weapon was registered, he was carrying the gun in a restricted area. Even though he has a concealed carry license, he is not permitted to have the weapon in the courthouse. He has since been placed on non-judicial duties pending investigation and trial. This means that Judge Claps will be confined to routine tasks, such as legal research and marriage ceremonies.

This incident has sparked a lot of questions regarding the security and regulations that take place in our courthouses. While some may blame the security guards for letting the gun pass through the scanners, this case is not that simple. There are several complex regulations that impact courthouse security. If you will be entering a courthouse in the near future, it is important to be up to date on these procedures.

diana-feil-226524-copy-200x300Gun control laws have been in a considerable state of flux for many years. Although in Illinois you are allowed to exercise your second amendment right to possess a firearm for self-defense, many still get in tangles with the law (see here for details on what warrants a charge of an unlawful use of a firearm or here for details regarding more serious affairs).

There are many reasons for this, but an undoubted central source would have to be the many changes to the laws governing guns over the years. More specifically, the last couple of decades have seen significant changes. The following are sections of significant change within the last 20 years of gun law history.

1998

sawyer-bengtson-279792-copy-200x300Chicago law makes a distinction between merely possessing a firearm illegally and using a legal firearm for illegal purposes. If the crime is of unlawful shooting whilst in possession of an illegal firearm, the penalties are increased. This is because it is considered to be an aggravating factor to use an illegal firearm to commit any crime under the provisions of the handgun law.

To be absolutely clear, a person in Chicago can be prosecuted for both possessing an illegal firearm and using a legal firearm to commit a crime. Because Chicago has been dubbed the “Gun Crime Capital of the World,” the authorities are anxious to ensure that crimes of gun violence are severely punished. That is not to say that Chicago is willing to engage in full gun control.

For example, the illegal possession of a handgun is a Class 4 Felony in Chicago and can carry a term of imprisonment of up to three years. The possession of other firearms is considered to be a Class A misdemeanor, which could lead up to a year in jail as well as a fine of up to $2500. Your lawyers may be able to negotiate a plea to a lesser charge.

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