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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1087933811.jpg Murder is commonly seen as the worst crime an individual can commit. The act of ending another person’s life is punishable by a lengthy prison sentence and other harsh penalties. Although rare, some unfortunate situations occur in individuals' lives that legally warrant killing another person. In the state of Illinois, the use of deadly force on another person may be justified if the person was directly threatening the defendant's life. 

Understanding Illinois Murder Charges 

Similar to other criminal charges, murder is calculated, charged, and sentenced by degree. The degree of the murder charge is based on a few factors, including the situation of the crime and the intent of both parties involved. Murder is charged in Illinois on two different counts:

  • First-Degree Murder — First-degree murder involves killing someone with the intent to kill or cause great bodily harm. This is the most serious homicide charge in Illinois. The consequences of a first-degree murder conviction include a minimum of 20 years in prison. Probation or early release is not permitted for this type of crime. The state of Illinois does not have the death penalty. 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_2090617144.jpgIn an effort to allow police officers more time and resources to combat violent crimes, the state of Illinois legalized the use of marijuana on January 1, 2020. The state saw it as beneficial to allocate the money and public space used to enforce marijuana laws to rehabilitation and substance abuse and treatment centers. Although recreational marijuana is legal in Illinois, there are still regulations throughout the state to ensure that Illinois citizens are safe. Breaking any of the outlined rules for legalized marijuana, including illegally distributing marijuana, may still result in legal consequences. 

Can I Sell Marijuana?

Can you sell marijuana in Illinois? The short answer is no. Illinois citizens without a state-issued license may not distribute marijuana to others. In order to sell marijuana, Illinois requires an entity (usually a business) to obtain a license and open a dispensary. The application fee to open a dispensary costs $30,000. There is also another $100,000 charge to the state for the cannabis business development fund. If you are a citizen in Illinois without a license to grow and distribute marijuana, you can be charged with a misdemeanor or felony for illegally distributing marijuana.

Marijuana Regulations 

Marijuana regulations are easy to follow if you can remember two key rules about legal cannabis in Illinois: (1) you must have a license to grow or distribute marijuana, and (2) you can only possess 30 grams or less at a time. Failure to follow Illinois marijuana laws may result in a person being charged with a drug crime:

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arlington heights criminal defense lawyerPeople make mistakes every day — it is human nature. Legal mistakes, however, can follow you for the rest of your life and affect the way you interact with the world. Depending on the nature of the crime that was committed and the age of the offender, some people with a criminal record may be eligible to expunge or seal their criminal records. This process removes or conceals any wrongdoings, but there are some cases where an old record can still be reached.

How Do I Conceal or Expunge My Record?

Many people who have committed a crime wish to remove the crime off of their record in an effort to distance themselves from a past mistake. If you are looking to remove a record, it is important to understand the difference between expunging a record and sealing a record. When a record is expunged, it is destroyed and your name is removed from public records and official files. If a record is sealed, it still exists, but it is not available to the general public. To determine if a criminal record can be sealed or expunged, a few factors have to be taken into consideration. 

  • The nature of the crime — An important factor that is considered when determining if a crime is eligible to be expunged is the crime’s classification. You can expunge your arrest record, court provisions, and sometimes probation orders. However, if you were convicted of a crime and sentenced, you may be eligible to seal the crime, but not expunge your record.  

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1370766311.jpgIn the age of the internet, dating apps and social media dominate the social scene. Most social media platforms and dating apps have age limits that regulate children and underage activity. But what happens if a minor lies about his or her age, especially when engaging in a sexual relationship with an adult? Many factors go into determining the fault of each party. However, if you have engaged in sexual relations with a minor, you may be charged with statutory rape in the state of Illinois.  

Age of Consent and Statutory Rape 

Even if a minor lies about their age, an adult is still liable for committing statutory rape. Age of consent laws tend to fluctuate between states. In the state of Illinois, the age of consent is 17 years. This means that if you are over the age of consent and engage in sexual activity with someone under 17, you may be charged with a sex crime. 

There are two classifications of sex crimes in Illinois. If you allegedly engaged in sexual activity with a minor, you could be charged with:

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Posted on in DUI

arlington heights DUI defense lawyerA DUI may feel like an inescapable sentence. However, there are a variety of tried-and-true strategies that someone may use to successfully defend against a guilty DUI charge in the state of Illinois. When facing a potential DUI conviction, time is of the essence. Evidence may be piling up against you, and the first line of a good defense is strategizing with an experienced attorney. 

Understanding your DUI

DUI charges can range in severity and sentencing. Each individual's case will vary depending on the details and circumstances of their unique situation. A DUI charge in the state of Illinois is a serious crime, and those accused should take the charges very seriously. A first-time DUI offender may face up to one year in jail for a class A misdemeanor and potentially face fines up to $2,500.

Drunk Driving Defense Strategies in Arlington Heights

  • Contact an attorney — The first step to defend against a DUI charge is to hire an attorney who can represent you. By speaking to an attorney, you can review the unique facts of your case and craft a strong defense strategy.

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