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Arlington heights drug crime lawyerA drug charge may interfere with gainful employment and landlords can frown upon a conviction when they run a background check. A conviction for drug crimes in Illinois can also have serious criminal consequences, including jail time. But what if you were riding in a car with your buddies and the drugs were in the trunk? If you are facing charges for drug possession, drug manufacturing or distribution, or another drug crime, make sure to contact a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. 

Elements and Defense

If you are arrested for drug possession do not resist arrest and stay calm. Also, remember that anything you say can be used against you. So be polite and decline to answer questions until your lawyer is present.

The penalties depend on the type of substance and the amount. Under Illinois law, a person must know or have a reason to know if they are in possession of a controlled substance.  Charges depend on your type of knowledge. So for you to be charged the prosecution must prove the following three things beyond a reasonable doubt:

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arlington heights criminal defense lawyerIn a blog we posted earlier this month, we began to discuss what happens when a person is arrested for a felony or misdemeanor crime they did not commit. This unenviable situation can cause extreme hardship. You may be filled with anxiety about how your case will end. Sadly, there is always some risk of conviction, even if you are entirely innocent. This is why you need a highly skilled and experienced criminal defense attorney to fight back against the false charges. Outcomes like dismissal or acquittal at trial are possible when the case is well-handled. Remember that it is not your burden to prove your innocence, but the state’s burden to prove your guilt. Proving guilt can prove difficult when the wrong person has been arrested, or no crime was committed at all. However, they may try, and their efforts may be convincing. It is important to follow the advice of your attorney closely. 

What to do While Your Case is Pending

Although every defendant is presumed innocent until their guilt has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt, you may feel as if you have already been found guilty. If you were placed under pretrial supervision, you will very much be treated like a criminal. You do not deserve any of this, but it is the reality of the criminal justice system. 

If your bail is impossibly high, your attorney may be able to file a motion and have it lowered. When you make bail, it is critical that you comply with all conditions of your bail, which may include things like not leaving the state and staying clean and sober. Violating a condition of bail or pretrial supervision could lead to additional criminal charges. 

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Posted on in DUI

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1626849382-min.jpg Intoxicated driving charges are serious. There is a stigma attached to DUI convictions. You may face socioeconomic consequences in addition to any judicial penalties ordered. Even as a misdemeanor, a DUI can result in a term of incarceration, a loss of driving privileges, and steep fines. As a felony, the consequences may be even more dire. Particularly if someone was injured, courts take intoxicated driving seriously and are unlikely to show leniency. However, a conviction is not assured at the outset of the case. In our justice system, you have the opportunity to present a defense that may result in a dismissal or acquittal at trial. This is why you need a skilled attorney to carefully assess every aspect of your case in order to build the strongest defense possible. If you have been arrested for DUI, it is critical that you contact an attorney as soon as you are able to. 

Reasons Your DUI Case May Not Result in a Conviction

There are a number of legal tools an attorney may use to invalidate some critical piece of evidence or to raise reasonable doubt at trial. Potential paths to dismissal or acquittal may include: 

  • Invalid chemical testing result - Police officers must follow a highly specific procedure in order to obtain a valid biological sample to test for the presence of alcohol or drugs. Any missed steps, left-out precautions, or an uncalibrated instrument can result in an invalid test. 

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Posted on in Criminal Law

arlington heights criminal defense lawyerIf you are facing criminal charges, you may feel like you have no options and no control over the process. You may have gotten a letter telling you to be in court at 9am and you must show up or face arrest. If you are put on pretrial supervision, you must comply with everything some probation officer tells you to do. For example, if you get a phone call telling you to come in for a drug test, you must stop whatever you are doing and comply. It is easy to feel like you have little agency left. However, you have options. You probably have more options than you think. One of the biggest decisions you will need to make is whether to accept a plea bargain or go to trial. There are benefits and drawbacks to both decisions. While your lawyer can guide you and give you a better understanding of your specific situation, the choice is ultimately yours. 

Trial, Risk Tolerance, and Extreme Outcomes

If you are only facing one charge, trial can be an all-or-nothing event. If you are acquitted after a trial, that is it - you are free to go. You can walk out of the courthouse with no conviction on your record, and you will not have to worry about your case anymore. 

However, if you are convicted, you may face harsher sentencing. Your conviction will be for the original offense you are charged with, not a lesser charge that may have been offered during plea bargaining. The judge sentencing you may have heard testimony from your victim, if there is one, and may be more inclined to throw the book at you. You should also know that if you testify, the prosecutor will be able to question you, and they will probably not be easy questions.

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arlington heights criminal defense lawyerAs much as we would like to think that only guilty people get arrested and wind up charged with a crime, this is very much not the case. Every year, a significant number of innocent people find themselves having to plead “not guilty” at arraignment because they really did not commit the crime they are charged with - at least not knowingly. This can be a terrifying situation to be in. We have all seen documentaries about people who spent decades in prison only to be exonerated. Of course, most false charges are far less serious than homicide. Domestic violence, theft, and drug possession are very common crimes that people in Illinois must fend off erroneous accusations. If you have found yourself charged with a crime that you did not commit, it is critical that you find a tough criminal defense attorney to protect your freedom and reputation. 

Why do These False Arrests Happen?

The decision to arrest is typically made on the spot by police officers, who are human and make mistakes. Often, innocent people are arrested simply because the police walked into a situation they did not understand. Common reasons that people get charged with crimes they did not commit include: 

  • False accusations - This is very common in domestic violence and assault cases. 

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