DuPage County Criminal Defense Lawyers
Understanding the Criminal Law Process in Illinois
Criminal law is the body of law dealing with government prosecution of individuals for acts classified as crimes. It also covers the rights of an accused person and steps involved in the criminal process, such as:
- Questioning by Law Enforcement;
- Investigations and Police Reports;
- Warrants, Motions to Quash Warrants;
- Bond Hearings;
- Grand Juries;
- Pre-Trial Hearings, Motions to Suppress;
- Jury Selection;
- Sentencing; and
- Post-Trial Remedies.
At Mevorah Law Offices LLC, we have several decades of combined experience successfully litigating criminal cases at all levels of the state and federal judicial system. Our award-winning attorneys are former prosecutors and public defenders who have an in-depth understanding of the criminal law process as well as the local courts in the Chicago area and throughout Northern Illinois. Our unique prosecutorial experience gives us extensive knowledge of how the government builds its case and which defense strategies are most effective to reduce or eliminate the charges against our clients.
Criminal Charges in Illinois
Criminal charges encompass a broad range of misdemeanors and felonies. Felonies are serious offenses such as murder, serious drug crimes, fraud, sex crimes, multiple DUIs, and aggravated assault. Misdemeanors, which are less serious in nature, include offenses such battery, simple assault, and minor drug and property crimes.
Felonies are divided into five classes based on the seriousness of the crime. The maximum penalties for each class are as follows:
- Class X Felony: Fines of up to $25,000 and six to 35 years in state prison.
- Class 1 Felony: Fines of up to $25,000 and four to 15 years in state prison.
- Class 2 Felony: Fines of up to $25,000 and three to 7 years in state prison.
- Class 3 Felony: Fines of up to $25,000 and two to five years in state prison.
- Class 4 Felony: Fines of up to $25,000 and one to three years in state prison.
Misdemeanors are divided into three classes with the following maximum penalties:
- Class A Misdemeanor: A maximum fine of $2500 and up to 364 days in county jail.
- Class B Misdemeanor: A maximum fine of $1500 and up to six months in county jail.
- Class C Misdemeanor: A maximum fine of $1500 and up to 30 days in county jail.
Rights of Criminal Defendants
When charged with a crime, defendants have several constitutional rights. First and foremost, the government must prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” that you are guilty. Other constitutional rights include:
- Right to Remain Silent;
- Right to Confront Witnesses;
- Right to a Public Trial;
- Right to a Trial by Jury;
- Right to a Speedy Trial;
- Right to Adequate Representation;
- Right against Double Jeopardy (tried twice for the same offense);
- Right to Reasonable Bail; and
- Protection Against Unreasonable Search and Seizures.