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
- Unlawful possession of drugs with intent to deliver
- Unlawful possession of a stolen firearm
- Aggravated unlawful use of a weapon
Police say that they stopped Dobbins for a traffic violation, but Dobbins got out of the vehicle and fled. The police caught up with him and placed him under arrest. Police say they found a stolen Taurus 9 mm handgun and between 100 and 400 grams of cocaine which is probably in the range of somewhere between a quarter-pound and a pound.
Charge: Armed Violence
Armed violence is when you have a gun on you while committing a non-homicide felony (including manslaughter). Armed violence is considered a Class-X felony which has a minimum sentence of 15 years.
Charge: Being a Habitual Criminal in Possession of a Weapon
If a person with any two criminal offenses that qualify for this statute possesses a gun, the state can charge them with being a habitual criminal in possession of a weapon. This is also a Class-X felony with a minimum sentence of 15 years.
Charge: Possession with Intent to Deliver
Delivery of between 100 and 400g of cocaine is a Class-X felony which makes it worse than second-degree murder and aggravated sexual assault. In this case, the defendant faces a statutory minimum of nine years, but the charge also triggered the “armed violence” charge and is non-probational.
Charge: Unlawful Possession of a Stolen Firearm
Possession of a stolen firearm is a class-2 felony punishable by up to seven years with a minimum of three years.
Charge: Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon
Aggravated unlawful use of a weapon is considered a class-4 felony punishable by up to seven years.
What Will Happen to This Defendant?
This defendant will likely spend a significant amount of time behind bars. Facing three Class-X felonies translates to, at minimum, a 39-year sentence. Is this a fair sentence? Well, that is a question for voters and legislators. Criminal justice reform is very much on the minds of Chicagoans right now, so these types of drug offenses may not end up destroying quite as many lives as they do now. Nonetheless, legislators must weigh the balance of protecting its citizens against the public need to reform the justice system.
In this case, the enhanced punishments all relate to prior convictions involving weapons. A second problem arises when these men are released from prison and cannot find legitimate work. They are left to the streets to get money, so they end up eventually behind bars for the rest of their lives.
Talk to a Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney
David Freidberg represents those accused of serious crimes in the Chicago area. Call us today at (312) 560-7100 to discuss your situation with a skilled criminal defense attorney who can then begin protecting you from overzealous prosecutions and speculative evidence.