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Will County criminal defense attorney COVID-19

There is no denying the massive impact COVID-19 has had on millions of people all over the world. The new (novel) coronavirus that reportedly originated in China has now spread to other countries, including the United States. The influx of confirmed cases and reported deaths led the World Health Organization (WHO) to declare it a global pandemic. Schools, along with non-essential businesses such as shopping malls, movie theaters, bars, restaurants, and sports venues have been closed temporarily. Health and government officials are urging people to practice “social distancing” in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19. In many cities and states, there are “shelter in place,” isolation, or quarantine orders in place to protect the health and safety of its citizens. It is important to be aware of these restrictions to avoid any criminal charges. 

Typical Symptoms 

This specific type of coronavirus is highly contagious, and it travels from person to person through droplets from the nose or mouth that are spread when an infected person coughs or exhales. Typical symptoms of COVID-19 mirror upper respiratory illness such as pneumonia and include:

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Joliet criminal defense attorneysAlthough recreational marijuana was legalized in Illinois as of January 1, 2020, there are still many other drugs that citizens cannot possess or distribute in the state. Under Illinois law, it is unlawful to manufacture, own, sell, or traffic controlled substances such as heroin, cocaine, methamphetamines. Drug trafficking is a serious crime in which a person knowingly brings a controlled substance for the purpose of delivery or with the intent to deliver it elsewhere. 

Offenders are subject to serious criminal consequences, including prison and steep fines. These penalties are often doubled compared to drug possession charges. However, to be convicted of drug trafficking, the prosecution must prove the defendant knew he or she was bringing the controlled substance across state lines in addition to the ultimate goal of its delivery within or outside of the state. 

Punishments for Selling Drugs

Per the Illinois Controlled Substances Act, drug trafficking can carry a range of felony charges, from a Class 3 to a Class X. A convicted drug trafficker could be sentenced to serve a maximum sentence of 30 to 120 years in prison, or twice the maximum term applicable for a possession conviction. People found guilty of trafficking may be required to pay a fine of $75,000 up to $1 million, which is twice the amount of a maximum fine for a Class X controlled-substance possession-related felony.

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Will County criminal defense attorneyAlthough you may have heard the phrase “child endangerment” before, you may not know exactly what it means. Because the definition of child endangerment encompasses a few different criminal acts, offenders may engage in a wide variety of conduct. Child endangerment generally refers to an action or inaction that causes a child to suffer psychological, emotional, or physical abuse.

Under Illinois law, an individual may be found guilty of child endangerment if he or she knowingly causes or allows the well-being of a child under the age of 18 to be endangered. This can also include causing or permitting a child to be placed in a situation that endangers the child’s life or health. In some cases, false allegations or unintentional acts could result in these types of criminal charges, so it is critical to seek legal counsel if you or someone you know is facing these serious charges. 

Examples of Actions That Could Harm a Child 

Some people simply do not know the laws when it comes to activities or behaviors that are considered child endangerment. For example, they may not realize at what age a child can be left unattended, either at home or in a car. In other circumstances, not taking action if a child is being abused in any way can be classified as endangering him or her, even if someone was just a witness and not the alleged abuser. 

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Joliet criminal defense attorneysThe start of the new decade saw many changes to Illinois laws. The amendments and new legislation cover a wide variety of issues, from traffic violations to sexual crimes to the financial exploitation of the elderly, as well as the use of recreational marijuana. One of the most far-reaching laws removes the statute of limitations for criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual assault, and aggravated criminal sexual abuse for victims of any age, not just those 18 and under. This means a victim can file charges against his or her offender within any timeframe, not just within a certain number of years after the alleged crime took place. 

Previously, a sexual assault victim had to take legal action within 10 years of the offense if the victim reported the offense to police within three years after the commission of the crime. A large number of people may be facing criminal charges because of this change, and that is why it is important to understand what acts constitute these crimes and the legal ramifications if you are ever charged with them. 

How Are Sexual Assault and Abuse Defined?

The consequences for sexual crimes can be significant, resulting in felony charges that are punishable by hefty fines and jail time. Criminal sexual assault occurs when a person commits an act of sexual penetration and one of the following is true:

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Will County criminal defense attorneyWhen someone sees a “no trespassing” sign, he or she may not take it very seriously. It may seem more like a request to stay off of someone’s yard than an actual law. In legal terms, trespassing is defined as physically being on another person’s property without permission. Property owners have the right to call the police and have trespassers arrested and charged if they are on their premises. Generally, trespassing is charged as a misdemeanor offense in Illinois. However, if a person trespasses on a certain type of property or with the intent to commit a crime such as burglary, it could be charged as a felony. 

Different Forms of Trespassing

It is important to note that under Illinois law, there are two types of trespassing, civil and criminal. Civil trespass typically involves a tenant-landlord situation in which a tenant fails to pay rent but still remains in the residence. The police will not get involved until the eviction process is formally started. Criminal trespass to property, residence, or vehicle are more serious offenses, which can lead to fines and imprisonment depending on the circumstances. A few examples of this type of trespassing include the following:

  • Entering a building you do not have permission to be in
  • Stepping foot on property when there are “no trespassing” signs clearly posted
  • Using false documents to receive permission from the owner to enter or remain in a building
  • Refusing to leave someone’s home after being asked to leave
  • Operating or entering a vehicle, boat, plane, or snowmobile without permission to do so. 

Illinois Punishments for Trespassers

According to Illinois Criminal code, criminal trespassing can be prosecuted either as a Class A  or B misdemeanor, or even a Class 3 or 4 felony. The penalties for these offenses are as follows:

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