Archive for the ‘reckless driving charges’ tag
February 15th, 2017 at 9:01 am
All too many people find themselves ticketed for leaving the scene of an accident in Illinois, and these drivers fail to understand that leaving the scene of an accident is not just a traffic violation—it is a criminal offense. As such, it is important to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney if you have been ticketed for leaving the scene of an accident in Illinois. A skilled lawyer will be able to identify any potential defenses you have and will work hard to fight the charges that are pending against you.
There are several reasons why someone might leave the scene of an accident. For instance, you might panic because you do not know what to do. Or, you might leave because you think that there is nothing for you to do about the situation, such as when you accidentally hit a parked car and have no way to leave contact information and have no way to reach the driver of the vehicle you hit.
Sometimes drivers flee the scene of an accident because they are worried about facing other criminal charges in addition to the accident if police show up at the scene, such as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol or reckless driving charges.
What Are Your Obligations if You Are Involved in a Motor Vehicle Accident?
Under 625 ILCS 5/11-402, leaving the scene of an accident in Illinois is illegal. If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, you are supposed to stop immediately and remain at the scene until you can provide contact information (including providing your name address vehicle registration number and the name of the owner of the vehicle if it does not belong to you) to the affected parties, and/or until you render the appropriate aid for the given situation. In some situations, this could mean having to remain at the scene until law enforcement and/or emergency personnel arrive at the scene. You are also required to report the motor vehicle accident to the appropriate authorities under 625 ILCS 5/11-403 and you have 10 days to report the accident to the Illinois Secretary of State.
What Are the Consequences of Leaving the Scene of an Accident?
A conviction for leaving the scene of an accident is a misdemeanor, which can leave you with a criminal record, jail time, a fine, and a lengthy probation period. Additionally, a conviction for leaving the scene of an accident can result in long-term consequences as well. For instance, your driving privileges could be suspended or revoked and having a leaving the scene of an accident conviction on your record could prevent you from getting certain types of jobs in the future, especially if those jobs involve driving.
Consult With a Criminal Defense Lawyer Now
You should consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney if you have been charged with leaving the scene of an accident in Illinois. The potential consequences of a conviction are numerous, and you need to do everything that you can to help protect yourself and your rights. Working with a passionate Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney who has years of experience handling these types of cases would be to your benefit.
February 16th, 2016 at 7:00 am
When formally charged, a criminal defendant may be surprised to learn just how many different charges are filed against him or her for a single alleged crime. Someone who is arrested for driving under the influence might face DUI charges and reckless driving charges. Someone who gets into a physical altercation with law enforcement might be charged with aggravated battery of a peace officer and obstructing a peace officer.
Illinois employs what is referred to as the one-act, one-crime doctrine. Under this doctrine, for any one physical act or crime committed by a criminal defendant, he or she can only be convicted of one crime. However, that does not mean that the criminal defendant will not face a number of charges. Criminal defense lawyers work to either get charges dropped completely, or reduced to lesser crimes, which carry less severe consequences.
You May Face a Number of Criminal Charges
Many have heard the expression of ‘throwing everything at the wall and seeing what sticks.’ Prosecutors often take this approach when pressing charges against criminal defendants. This is because under Illinois law, a defendant can only be convicted of an offense with which he or she has been charged. As such, prosecutors will charge a criminal defendant with as many crimes as fit the particular circumstances surrounding the alleged offense. For instance, it is not uncommon for criminal defendants who are arrested for driving under the influence to be charged with both DUI charges, under 625 ILCS 5/11-501, and reckless driving, under 625 ILCS 5/11-503. The DUI charges are the more serious offense, while reckless driving is a lesser offense.
Prosecutors often also charge criminal defendants with lesser included offenses. Lesser included offenses refers to situations where each of the elements required for establishing liability for a minor, or lesser, crime are necessarily required to establish liability for a more serious crime. Armed robbery, under 720 ILCS 18-2, is an example of a serious crime, and robbery, under 720 ILCS 18-1, is a lesser included charge commonly charged in conjunction with armed robbery. Armed robbery is the greater crime, while robbery is the lesser crime in this example.
In order to establish liability for armed robbery, the prosecution would necessarily have to establish liability for robbery. While not all the elements might exist to convict a criminal defendant of armed robbery, the elements for robbery may exist, and the criminal defendant can be convicted on the charge of robbery.
You Will Only Be Convicted of One Charge
Despite being charged with multiple crimes, a criminal defendant will only be convicted of one crime per physical act or crime. For example, while you can be charged with both robbery and armed robbery, you cannot be convicted of both armed robbery and robbery. Instead, you will only be convicted of one crime or the other, if you are convicted at all.
We Can Provide You with Exceptional Representation
Being charged with a crime is scary and daunting. Please do not hesitate to contact a skilled and compassionate Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney at our office immediately if you are facing criminal charges. We will fight to get your charges dismissed or reduced if possible. Call us today at 847-394-3200.