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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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Joliet theft crimes defense attorneysCriminal offenses such as theft, robbery, and burglary are often misunderstood crimes because they are frequently lumped together. However, they are different offenses. Under Illinois law, theft occurs any time a person’s actions result in the intentional and unauthorized taking of property or services. 

Theft offenses are typically classified according to the dollar amount value of the item or service stolen and can range from misdemeanors to felonies depending on the circumstances. It is important to know the distinctions between them in case you are ever facing prosecution for theft in Illinois. 

What Constitutes Theft? 

Illinois law defines theft as occurring when a person knowingly:

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Joliet domestic violence defense attorneyDomestic violence of any kind is against the law in Illinois. There are many acts that constitute domestic abuse. According to the Illinois Domestic Violence Act, any individual who hits, kicks, chokes, harasses, threatens, or interferes with the personal liberty of another family or household member has broken the law. Abuse can take place regardless of race, geographic location, or income level, and for many different reasons. The abuser may suffer from certain mental health issues such as addiction or post-traumatic stress disorder. An act of domestic abuse can also be performed in self-defense or defense of another person, or as a result of mutual combat. No matter what leads to domestic violence, there will be legal repercussions.   

Domestic Battery

Domestic battery is when a person intentionally causes bodily harm to a family or household member or makes physical contact in a provocative or insulting way. Domestic battery is considered a Class A misdemeanor, but it is increased to a Class 4 felony if the defendant has a previous conviction for domestic battery or if the action involves one of the following circumstances:

  • Battery using a firearm;
  • Battery involving a child; and
  • Battery involving sexual assault.

Domestic battery is also punishable as a Class 4 felony if the defendant has been convicted previously for committing a violent crime against a family or household member such as: 

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