Articles Tagged with Chicago criminal defense attorney

nik-macmillan-280300-unsplash-copy-300x200Facing a criminal charge in Chicago is never an easy task, even if you have gone through the experience in the past. Each instance is different, especially if the charges or crimes are different. There is quite a bit you might not be prepared for when it comes to dealing with a criminal charge, which is why we have compiled this list of important questions to ask your criminal defense attorney after a criminal charge has been filed against you.

What Actions Should I Take?

Even though you were the person charged with the crime, you can still help the attorney move forward with your case. It is important to ask your attorney this question because he or she might have a list of things for you to accomplish or provide them as part of the defense strategy. For example, you might need to provide the attorney with documents that could help your alibi or other parts of the case. Do you need to enroll in a drug or alcohol abuse class? Find out as soon as possible what you need to do to aid the attorney working your case.

javier-villaraco-235574-copy-300x225Having a loved one incarcerated can cause a lot of strain on your relationship, whether you are married, dating, or even if you are divorced. Knowing how to deal with such a circumstance in Chicago can mean the difference between a stressful life and one that is a little bit easier to handle. Today, we will discuss how you can handle dealing with an incarcerated loved one so you can make the proper adjustments for yourself and your family.

Avoid Treating it as a Loss

One of the worst things you can do for yourself and for your loved one in jail is treat this as a loss. You did not lose your loved one. He or she is still alive. You can still talk on the phone, write letters, and physically visit him or her in prison. You cannot mourn this situation like you would the death of a loved one. There is one thing you must know: Others might not offer much support when a loved one is in jail like they would if your loved one had died.

matthew-henry-35963-unsplash-copy-300x200Facing criminal charges is a daunting task. It becomes even more daunting when you do not have an experienced criminal defense attorney by your side from the very beginning of your case. An attorney brings a lot to the table when representing a client facing criminal charges. That is why you need the most experienced attorney on your side. In today’s post we will discuss the five reasons to call a lawyer immediately after a criminal charge.

Speak to Law Enforcement on Your Behalf

One of the most important reasons why you should always call a lawyer immediately after being charged with a crime is so the lawyer can speak to the police on your behalf. The police might want to speak with you prior to placing you under arrest. This can be done on the phone, at your home, or at the supposed scene of the crime. You do not legally have to say anything to the police, even if they have not read you your Miranda Rights. This is where an attorney can be extremely helpful. They can answer the questions posed by the police on your behalf.

william-stitt-162589-unsplash-copy-300x200The minute you are charged with a crime in Chicago, your rights are in jeopardy. You might be facing decades in prison or thousands of dollars in fines. Either way, you will want to do everything possible to begin building a defense to the charges levied against you. If you have never been charged with a crime before, you likely will not have an attorney in mind to call. This first step in the defense process is arguably the most important one. You must pick the right criminal defense attorney. Let us take a look at the traits of a strong criminal defense attorney in this post so you know what to look for when you need a lawyer.

Ability to Research

Research is one of the most important keys to defending against criminal charges. When an attorney has a strong ability to perform excellent research, you will notice how in-depth they dive into your case. Research involves more than just scouring the internet, putting your nose in a book, and interviewing witnesses. Attorneys who know how to research will know where to turn to find the answers they need, no matter where they have to look or with whom they need to speak.

javier-villaraco-235574-copy-300x225When you are facing felony charges in Chicago, you will likely be scared about what is to come. Even if you have been charged with a crime in the past, facing a felony charge can be life changing. A felony conviction can lead to years in prison, thousands of dollars in fines, restitution, and many other penalties. Even after you have served your time, you could very well still struggle to return to a normal life. Today, we will take a look at how a felony conviction can change your life.

Post-Conviction

Once your trial is complete and you are found guilty of the felonious crime, you will begin your post-conviction life. This is one of the more difficult parts of life as a convicted felon. This part of your life starts with sentencing. You could very well wind up with the maximum recommended sentence from the judge. Or, you could be sentenced to a handful of years in prison. The judge will take into account statements made by the plaintiff, the victim’s family, and any statement you make.

chris-liverani-552022-unsplash-copy-300x194Plea bargaining is an important part of the legal system. It is one of the most common, if not the most common way cases end. Not every case will end in front of a judge and a jury. A large number of them are dropped or end with a plea deal. So, what is a plea deal? A plea deal is an agreement between the prosecutor on the case and your criminal defense attorney. Let us take a look at plea bargaining and how it can help your situation.

Two Types of Plea Bargaining

There are two types of plea bargaining that attorneys talk about – charge bargaining and sentencing bargaining. Charge bargaining occurs when your attorney negotiates with the prosecutor to reduce the charges or drop some of them in exchange for your guilty plea to a different charge. Sentencing bargaining occurs when your attorney and the prosecutor negotiate a lighter sentence in exchange for you pleading guilty or no content to the charges levied against you.

amritanshu-sikdar-253730-unsplash-copy-300x200Drug charges are some of the most common criminal charges issued in the Chicago area. Even if you are no stranger to drug charges, you will want to know the different defenses you can use to fight the charges levied against you. It does not take much to fight a drug charge in Chicago, but you should always protect your rights with the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Your freedom is something you should never take for granted by nonchalantly accepting whatever charges were filed against you. Let us take a look at the most common defenses to drug charges in today’s post.

Someone Else’s Drugs

One of the most common defenses to a drug charge when caught in possession of drugs is that the drugs belonged to someone else. So many people use this defense as soon as the police officer initiates the contact. They carry this defense with them to their criminal defense attorney’s office and then in front of a judge if the case gets that far. This will require quite a bit of evidence to prove.

ben-white-194220-copy-300x200Being charged with a crime brings a lot of stress and worry with it. You never know what will come of your case, especially if it goes to trial. Should the case go to trial and you are convicted of the crime, you will then need to attend a sentencing hearing in front of the judge. This is an important hearing because you are learning your fate. You will find out how long you will be sentenced to jail, if any fines will be levied, and if you can avoid any jail time. Here is what you can expect at a sentencing hearing.

The Length of the Hearing

For the most part, the sentencing hearing will not take very long. This is a process that should only last a handful of minutes. All the judge needs to do is read through the pre-sentence report that was created by the probation office. The judge will then listen to arguments made by the criminal defense attorney, the prosecutor, and sometimes the defendant and/or family members of the victim.

nicolas-barbier-garreau-256433-copy-300x240Aggravated battery of a police officer is a serious crime. Chicago judges and law enforcement are especially harsh on these cases. If you were recently charged with this crime, it is important to know your defense options. It is also crucial that you look at recent cases to understand how harsh the judge could be at your arraignment and potential trial.

Recent Cases

On July 4, 2018, Chicago police responded to a domestic dispute at a party. A woman told police that her boyfriend had physically assaulted her. She had left the event, but her child was still there. When the police attempted to arrest the boyfriend, he became violent and used the child as a shield against them. Two of the man’s relatives then assaulted the officers in an attempt to free him.

ben-white-194220-copy-300x200In Bloomington, a verdict hangs in the air around a 2016 home invasion case. An armed robbery occurred in the home of a Bloomington couple, and the defendant is being charged with attempted murder, armed robbery, home invasion, and a weapons charge. One member of the group of three posed as a pizza delivery man and made his way into the home, at which point the group demanded $40,000 in cash from the couple. While the details of the cash remain contested, and the total number of men involved and their degree of involvement is debatable, what remains clear is that home invasion happens all too frequently. When it does, victims need an attorney with a history of fighting criminal issues in Chicago.

How to Find a Good Attorney

If you are facing a similar situation, or you too have faced a home invasion case recently, whether as the victim or the defendant, you need legal help. Hiring just any attorney will not do. You need an expert in Home invasion laws. Expert attorneys know the latest changes that Illinois lawmakers have put into effect regarding home invasions. By definition, home invasion differs from other violations in that it only covers entering an inhabited dwelling and causing injury. However, it can also cover entering an inhabited dwelling and using or threatening to use force while armed. In the case of the latter, you might need an expert in weapons cases to lead the charge in your favor after a home invasion.