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Arlington Heights, IL traffic citation defense attorney

Traffic courts are some of the busiest courtrooms around, especially in Illinois. There are many different types of traffic citations with which you can be charged, but the most common violations in Illinois tend to be running red lights, failing to have a copy of insurance information on hand, DUI, drag racing, reckless driving, and speeding. While some of these tickets do not require an appearance in traffic court, you can request one if you feel the need to do so. Going to court may seem daunting, but knowing what to expect can help you be more prepared to secure a positive outcome.

Preparing for Your Hearing

Not all citations require you to appear in traffic court. When you received the ticket, the officer should have informed you of whether or not you are required to attend a hearing. If you are required, you should show up to traffic court at the specified date and time. If not, you can request a hearing to challenge the ticket or plead guilty and pay the fine.

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Rolling Meadows criminal law attorney

Not all crimes are created equally. Some crimes, like assault or murder, are much more serious than lesser crimes, such as theft or traffic violations. Illinois, like all states, has a system for classifying crimes. Crimes are placed into categories of felonies and misdemeanors, of which there are varying “classes” of severity. What many people do not know is that there are also certain factors that can increase or mitigate the severity of the punishment that is imposed on someone who is convicted of a criminal offense. It is important to understand the factors that are commonly used by the prosecution to enhance the charges to “aggravated” in Illinois.

Aggravating Factors in Illinois

Even if someone is convicted of a crime, that does not automatically determine the sentence that he or she will receive. Under Illinois law, a sentencing hearing will occur after the conviction in which a judge will review the case and make a decision as to what the appropriate sentence would be for the specific situation. In some cases, this is when the prosecution has the chance to present any aggravating factors that may be present, which could influence the judge to impose a more serious sentence. Illinois lists 32 unique aggravating factors that could affect a defendant's sentence. Some of the most common factors include:

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Rolling Meadows, IL domestic abuse defense attorney

In today’s world, social media plays a big part in many people’s daily lives. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are used by millions of people across the world to connect with one another. Social media is so ingrained into our society that it is important to understand the effects that these digital networking platforms play in our life. In particular, social media has created some concerns when it comes to dealing with domestic violence allegations. In certain scenarios, information or pictures that a defendant posted online could be used against him or her in a criminal case.

Domestic Abuse Laws in Illinois

The state of Illinois defines domestic violence as acts of harassment, abuse, intimidation, interference with personal liberty, or willful deprivation toward a family or household member. In many cases, acts of violence can also be considered assault and/or battery, but when these acts are allegedly perpetrated against a family or household member, they can lead to domestic violence charges.

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Rolling Meadows felony drug possession attorney

In many states, Illinois included, the majority of drug possession crimes are charged as felonies. Felony crimes typically carry serious penalties, including a prison sentence of at least one year. A conviction for a felony crime could affect you for the rest of your life and remain on your criminal record for years, if not permanently. This can impact your personal and professional future, making it difficult to obtain housing or employment. If you have been charged with drug possession, you should speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney about whether requesting probation is an option for this type of drug crime

What Are Felony Drug Possession Charges in Illinois?

The state of Illinois legalized the sale, purchase, consumption, and possession of recreational marijuana at the beginning of 2020. However, there are still limits to the amount of marijuana you can legally possess at any given time. Illinois residents can possess up to 30 grams of cannabis flower, up to 5 grams of cannabis concentrate, and up to 500 milligrams of THC in cannabis-infused products, such as edibles or tinctures. Any amount over these would be considered illegal. While possession of between 30 and 100 grams of marijuana is a Class A misdemeanor, a second offense or possession of more than 100 grams may be charged as a felony.

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Rolling Meadows criminal charges defense attorney

Being arrested for a crime can be a very traumatic experience. When you are arrested, you are handcuffed by the police officer and taken to be processed and held in jail. Your first thought when you land in jail might be, “How can I get out?” Usually, the quickest way to do that is to have a friend or family member post bail for you. Typically, weeks or even months can pass between your initial arrest and the disposition of your sentence. Posting bail allows you to be released from custody and go about your normal life until you are requested to appear back in court. It is important to understand how the bail process works in case you or your loved one is ever facing criminal charges in Illinois. 

How Is Bail Set?

Depending on the type of crime, you might be allowed to post bail the same night you are arrested. For offenses that are more serious, such as violent crimes, you may be required to remain in custody until you attend a bail hearing before a judge. During this hearing, the judge will determine whether or not you are eligible for bail and at what amount your bail should be set. Judges use a variety of factors to determine whether you should be eligible for bail, including the seriousness of the alleged offense, the risk that you may attempt to flee before your case can be heard in court, and the safety risks that you may pose to other individuals or the community.

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