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Expunging your record means the physical records of your criminal history will be destroyed or returned to you and that your name will be removed from any official index or database.

Sealing your record means records will be physically and electronically maintained, but they will be unavailable to the public without a court order.  Your name will be removed from any official index or public record; however, law enforcement agencies and the courts will still have access to the records, as will a few employers and other entities allowed by law.

Charlie expunge

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A recent article in the Chicago Tribune reported that a Palatine man allegedly hit another man with a baseball bat during an argument. Albino Damian-Lopez, 24, turned himself in to Cook County police regarding the incident just one day after fleeing the scene. Lopez has been charged with aggravated battery.

Robyn assault and batteryPeople are sometimes confused about the lines between assault and battery. In addition, some are not sure what makes an assault or battery aggravated. In general, assault is the threat of harm and battery is the action that carries out the threat. For example, if a person lunges at you in a threatening manner and you perceive that they intended to harm you physically, that would be considered assault. Notice in the scenario, that no physical contact was made. If the person struck you after assaulting you, that would be considered battery.

How Does Assault or Battery Become Aggravated?

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Posted on in Criminal Law

Rigs legal rightsPolice officers have the power to investigate if they have reasonable suspicion that a crime has been, or is about to be, committed. Reasonable suspicion allows police officers to detain a person briefly for questioning. During this stop, the police may quickly frisk someone and search their vehicle for weapons or other dangerous materials. Police officers sometimes abuse these frisks to go on fishing expeditions for evidence. This is an unconstitutional abuse of the reasonable suspicion rule, and courts have started cracking down on the practice.

However, the best way to fight these bullying tactics by the police is for people to exercise their rights.  First, even though police have the power to approach a person, they cannot force the person to answer questions and the person has the right to walk away. If the police decide to frisk someone because they have reasonable suspicion of criminal behavior, this stop must be brief and they can not force the person to answer questions.

If the police decide to arrest a person, they must inform that person of his or her legal rights, including the right to an attorney. It is important that the person ask for an attorney before answering any questions.

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TheresaAccording to a report in the Chicago Tribune, a new law has been passed that will now allow 17 year old felony offenders to be tried in juvenile court as opposed to being tried as adults. Experts say that this change will allow the juveniles a better chance of rehabilitation.

In a prison system that is seriously overcrowded with a high rate of recidivism, House Bill 2404 should be instrumental to giving juvenile offenders the tools that they require to emerge as law-abiding citizens. Handling the kids in an environment that is less focused on punitive punishment will give them better coping skills to understand what they did wrong, why they did it, and learn what they can do differently in order to stay out of jail in the future.

If it passes, Illinois will join 38 states that have passed similar laws. This bill is focused on an approach that is more rehabilitative and goes along with the national trends that are geared toward youth development. The current adult jail system is not equipped to deal with the issues and provide the support that the youth offenders need.

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