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IL defense lawyerAn Illinois man has pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a woman that he met at a nightclub in August 2017. The man was sentenced to probation last week after he pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and not criminal sexual assault, which he was originally charged with.

The Case

According to police, the man and another man, both residents of Arlington Heights, met the woman and two of her friends at a club in Lake in the Hills. The group left the club and went to the woman’s Crystal Lake house where the man forcibly performed sex acts on the woman, who said he held her down during the acts. The woman also stated that the men stole several pieces of jewelry that amounted to more than $500.

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Illinois defense lawyerA homeless Illinois man has been charged with sexual assault for an incident occurring near the Illinois Prairie Path in Wheaton. The incident occurred in the early morning on May 18 near a DuPage Pads shelter, an organization that provides housing and support services to help individuals become self-sufficient.

The Case

Wheaton Police responded to a call that someone was screaming for help around the Pads shelter in Wheaton. The police reported that when they got there, they found the victim and the woman who was screaming for help, with dirt on her face and scratches and cuts to her upper body. According to the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s office, the man approached the woman and demanded sex. When she refused, he allegedly dragged her into the woods by her hair, sexually assaulted her and then fled the scene.

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Illinois defense lawyerOne of the most controversial and emotional crimes a person can be accused of - whether the accusation is true or not - is a sex crime. One of the reasons why sex crime accusations are so controversial is the unclarity of what does and does not insinuate consent. Each state has its own sexual consent laws and varying punishments for sex crimes. It’s important to understand what constitutes sexual consent in your state.

Sexual Consent in Illinois

According to Illinois state law, consent is defined as a freely given agreement to the act of sexual penetration or sexual conduct in question. It also states that a lack of verbal or physical resistance or submission by the victim in response to the use of force or threat of force does not constitute consent. Illinois state law also says that the manner of dress of the victim does not constitute consent. Furthermore, a person can withdraw consent during the course of a sexual act and any further action by the accused is considered non-consensual.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_243122509-1.jpgDue in large part to the publicity of high-profile cases, laws pertaining to the statute of limitations and handling of sexual assault and harassment claims are undergoing change or review. Officials maintain these efforts are necessary to protect victims. However, consideration is now being given to the way the registry of sexual offenders is maintained in Illinois.

Task Force Makes Recommendations

At the end of last year, a specially named task force published a report that proposed certain changes to the way Illinois handles sex offenders and the state’s registration list. The panel included public advocates, victims, members of law enforcement, defense attorneys and prosecutors.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_736146343.jpgVictims of sexual assault and sexual harassment have begun stepping forward with allegations of events that occurred both recently and in the past. With this increased awareness comes a renewed scrutiny of how both alleged victims and those accused of sexual crimes are treated under the law.  

In Illinois and Across the Country

Last summer, Illinois officials passed legislation removing the statute of limitations on cases of sexual abuse crimes against children. The bill was quickly signed into law. However, renewed attention is being placed on the issue of sex crimes in large part due to the revelations of past actions by entertainment industry professionals, high profile physicians, and even elected officials.

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