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What Are the Different Types of Felony Charges in Illinois?

 Posted on July 27, 2020 in Criminal Defense

Joliet criminal defense lawyerLaws are put in place to deter crime and maintain public safety. When these laws are broken, there are criminal consequences. There are many actions that constitute a crime in Illinois. Depending on the nature of the act as well as the intent and extenuating circumstances, an offense can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. In Illinois, the lowest classification of a crime is a misdemeanor and the highest classification is a felony. Felony crimes are typically violent acts that are committed against a person or property. In most cases, a defendant faces significant fines and/or jail time, in addition to a permanent criminal record if convicted. However, a person could be wrongfully accused, which is why it is essential to have experienced legal representation when facing such charges. 

How Illinois Classifies Felony Crimes

Any felony charge can have long-lasting consequences and hinder a person’s ability to find employment or secure a financial loan for housing in the future. According to Illinois law, the least severe felonies are designated as Class 4. A Class 4 felony carries a penalty of one to three years in prison. Examples of this category of felonies include, but are not limited to:

  • Aggravated domestic battery

  • Unlawful use of a weapon (UUW)

  • Cyberstalking

  • Identity theft

The next level is a Class 3 felony, which can carry a jail term of two to five years. Several examples of a Class 3 felony in Illinois include:

  • Aggravated battery 

  • Theft of item(s) valued at $300 to $2,000

  • Forgery

  • Reckless homicide

A Class 2 felony is punishable by three to seven years in prison. A few examples of a Class 2 felony in Illinois are: 

  • Theft of item(s) valued at $2,000 to $10,000 

  • Unlawful use of a weapon if a convicted felon

  • Burglary

  • Arson

A Class 1 felony in Illinois carries a penalty of four to 15 years of incarceration. Examples of a Class 1 felony are:

  • Criminal sexual assault 

  • Theft over $10,000

  • Residential burglary

  • Trafficking of firearms

Class X felonies are the most serious crimes in Illinois. If someone is convicted of a Class X felony, he or she may face six to 30 years in prison and cannot receive probation. Criminal sexual assault, or rape, is charged as a Class X felony.

Contact a Will County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Illinois law distinguishes the severity of certain crimes by dividing them into categories, known as classes. Although a misdemeanor is typically not as severe as a felony, both can be serious and warrant legal representation by a professional. The diligent legal team at McNamara Phelan McSteen, LLC will fight for your rights and protect your personal and professional reputation. Our skilled Joliet criminal law attorneys have tried numerous criminal cases in both state and federal courts, so they are well-versed in Illinois criminal law and know what it takes to obtain a favorable verdict. To schedule your free consultation, call our office today at 815-727-0100.







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