Blog
Recent blog posts

Arlington Heights criminal defense attorney Miranda rightsIn 1966, the United States Supreme Court made a landmark ruling in the case of Miranda v. Arizona when it made a decision on how suspects are to be informed of their constitutional rights when they are arrested on felony or misdemeanor charges. Ernesto Miranda was arrested in 1963 on suspicion of kidnapping and rape. After a long interrogation, Miranda confessed to the charges and signed a statement that his confession was made willingly and knowingly and that he understood his legal rights. When his case went to trial, his lawyers discovered that he had not, in fact, been informed of his constitutional rights to remain silent, to be represented by a lawyer, and to have that lawyer present during the interrogation. This Supreme Court ruling is one of the most famous cases in U.S. history, and it has changed the way arrests and interrogations have been handled ever since.

Miranda Rights Are Constitutional Rights

Because of Miranda v. Arizona, police officers are required to inform you of your rights before they begin an interrogation. Though some police departments may use different wording, the basis of the statements must be the same. Most police departments will use a version of the following: “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed to you. Do you understand the rights that I have just read to you?” It must be established that the suspect is aware of his or her rights before any interrogation can occur.

Misconceptions About Miranda Rights

The point of the Miranda Warning is to inform suspects of the rights that are granted to them by the United States Constitution. This includes the right to protection against self-incrimination and the right to legal counsel. Some people have misunderstandings about their Miranda rights and what that means for their criminal cases.

...

Arlington Heights murder defense attorneyDuring normal conversation, words that have more than one meaning are often used interchangeably, such as robbery, theft, and burglary. In general, these words mean the same thing, but in a court of law, they all have very different meanings. The same goes for homicide, murder, and manslaughter - they tend to have a similar meaning in everyday life, but they all have different definitions and carry very different sentencing terms when used in a legal setting. A person who is charged with first-degree murder will be facing much more serious consequences than a person who is charged with involuntary manslaughter.

Homicide

When you are talking about homicide in a law setting, it simply just means the act of one person killing another person, which may or may not be illegal, depending on the circumstances. For example, if you use deadly force against someone because they attempted to commit a forcible felony (like robbing your home or committing an assault), your actions may not technically be illegal because of Illinois laws regarding justifiable use of force.

Murder

Murder is the term that is used when an unjustified killing is committed. It is broken down into degrees:

...

Rolling Meadows construction zone speeding defense lawyerTraffic laws were put into place for a reason - to keep everyone safe while they are in and around motor vehicles. When someone violates these traffic laws, it can be dangerous for everyone involved, but if they violate traffic laws when driving through a work zone, the results can be deadly. According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, there were 6,741 crashes in Illinois work zones in 2016. In those accidents, 765 people were killed, and around 1,893 people were injured. 

Construction zones usually mean that there are more people near the road working, but drivers are actually more likely to become victims of construction zone crashes than workers. Illinois has some of the strictest construction zone traffic laws in the country, so it is important that you follow the rules for the sake of yourself and others.

1. Vehicle Occupants Are More Likely to Be Victims in Construction Zone Accidents

From 2013 to 2017, there were a total of 177 work zone accident fatalities in Illinois. Contrary to what you might think, the majority of those fatalities were not construction workers. In fact, only six workers were killed in construction zone collisions, meaning the other 171 deaths were drivers, passengers, pedestrians, or bicyclists.

...

Rolling Meadows traffic ticket attorneyMost states have some kind of points system that affects people’s driver’s licenses. The points systems work like golf--the fewer points you have, the better off you are. Every time you are convicted of a traffic offense, you will not just receive a citation--you will also gain points on your driving record. Each state’s system works differently; some states require you to gain a certain amount of points before action is taken, but others, like Illinois, only stipulate that you must commit three offenses before your license is penalized. Too many traffic violations could result in a license suspension or revocation, which can make life difficult for you.

Illinois’ Points System

The Office of the Illinois Secretary of State has developed a points system in which a driver accumulates a certain number of points each time they are convicted of a moving violation. The number of points that are assigned depends on the specific law that was violated, and the more severe the violation, the more points are assigned. If you are convicted of three or more offenses within 12 months, you could face a suspension or revocation of your driver’s license. Typically, when you hit that three-offense mark, a judge will make a determination regarding punishment depending on the number of points or the severity of the laws you violated.

High-Point Traffic Violations

Here are 10 of Illinois’ traffic violations that carry the most points:

...

Rolling Meadows aggravated DUI defense attorneyIt does not matter what situation you are in when you are charged with a DUI - they are all serious charges. However, if you are found to be driving while intoxicated when a child is present in the vehicle, your punishments will be much more strict. In Illinois, penalties for DUI increase if a child under the age of 16 years old is riding in the vehicle - but it does not stop there. In addition to DUI charges, you can also face other criminal violations, such as child endangerment. You could also be charged with more serious crimes if the child suffered an injury because of you. 

DUI With a Minor in the Vehicle

According to the Illinois Vehicle Code, a first conviction for DUI is a Class A misdemeanor, which comes with a loss of driving privileges for one year, a possible sentence of up to one year in jail, and a maximum fine of $2,500. If you had a child in your vehicle while you were driving under the influence, that sentence is a mandatory minimum of six months in jail, a mandatory minimum $1,000 fine, regardless of your ability to pay, and 25 days of community service in a program that benefits children.

If you were convicted of DUI, and there was a minor under the age of 16 in the vehicle who suffered bodily injury because of an accident you caused, the penalties increase. Even a first offense is considered a Class 4 felony aggravated DUI. This means that in addition to any other criminal or administrative punishments, a mandatory $2,500 fine is imposed, and 25 days of community service in a program that benefits children is required.

...

CALL US TODAY AT 847-253-3400 FOR A FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION