Search
Facebook Twitter Our Blog
The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley
24 HOUR ANSWERING | 847-394-3200
SERVICE

1855 Rohlwing Road, Suite D, Rolling Meadows, IL 60008

24 HOUR ANSWERING SERVICE

Archive for September, 2017

Can a Sleeping Driver be Arrested for DUI in Illinois?

September 27th, 2017 at 7:26 pm

DUI arrest, DUI charge, Rolling Meadows DUI defense lawyer, sleeping driver, DUI defenseWe all know that driving under the influence is illegal, but is it illegal to sleep one off in your car? You may be surprised to learn that, in Illinois, the answer is yes, under some circumstances.

Under code section 625 ILCS 5/11-501(a), it is illegal to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle in Illinois while under the influence of alcohol or an intoxicating compound to a degree that you are not capable of driving safely. Therefore, if a court of law determines that an individual had actual physical control of the vehicle that they were sleeping in while intoxicated then that person can rightfully be convicted of driving under the influence in Illinois.

What Does it Mean to Have “Actual Physical Control” of a Vehicle?

Having “actual physical control” of a vehicle essentially means having the ability to operate the vehicle. Illinois case law notes that a person does not need to move, or even have the intent to move, a vehicle to have actual physical control.

Relevant case law also indicates that there are several factors that courts in Illinois should take into account when determining whether or not an individual charged with a DUI had actual physical control of their vehicle.

Key factors include whether the individual:

  • Had the vehicle’s ignition key,
  • Was physically capable of operating the vehicle, and
  • Was sitting in the driver’s seat.

Please note that this list of factors is non-exhaustive and that the court will examine the totality of the circumstances on a case-by-case basis in order to determine whether or not the individual charged with driving under the influence did in fact have actual physical control of the vehicle.

How Can I Avoid a DUI Charge While Parked?

The best way to avoid a DUI charge while parked is to simply not sit in your parked car while intoxicated. Ask a sober driver to give you a lift, take a cab, or walk home. However, if you have no other option but to sleep or wait in your car, do whatever you can to show that you do not have actual physical control of the vehicle. For example, it is probably a good idea to put the car’s ignition key in the glove box and sit or lie down in the backseat.

Reach Out to Us Today for Help

If you have been accused of driving under the influence in Illinois, The Law Offices of Christopher Cosley is here to help. Attorney Christopher Cosley is an experienced Rolling Meadows DUI defense lawyer who handles all types of DUI cases in Rolling Meadows and throughout the greater Chicago area. Being convicted of driving under the influence can hugely impact your life, so it is important that you take steps today to protect your future. Start by hiring a tenacious DUI defense lawyer to argue your case.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-501

Hit and Run Accidents in Illinois

September 25th, 2017 at 7:47 pm

hit and run accidents, property damage, accident scene, car accident, traffic offensesAccording to the Daily Herald, the Illinois State Police are searching for a semi truck driver who fled after hitting a 48-year-old tollway maintenance worker recently. The victim was picking up trash on the shoulder of the southbound Tri-State Tollway when the trucker allegedly hit him and sideswiped his parked vehicle. The driver did not stop and, sadly, the worker passed away from his injuries.

Fleeing the scene of an accident is illegal in Illinois and if the driver is found by the authorities, then he or she will undoubtedly find himself or herself in a world of legal trouble.

Fleeing the Scene of an Accident

Under code section 625 ILCS 5/11-401 of the Illinois Compiled Statutes, any driver who is involved in a motor vehicle accident involving personal injuries or death is legally obligated to immediately stop his or her vehicle.

Drivers are required to remain at the scene of the accident until they have fulfilled the exchange of information and rendering aid requirements outlined in code section 625 ILCS 5/11-403. Any driver who fails to abide by these requirements because they fled the scene of the accident is guilty of a “hit and run.”

Additionally, it should be noted that that is also illegal to flee the scene of an accident that results only in property damage. In other words, even if no one was injured in the accident you are still generally required to stay at the scene of the accident if the accident caused property damage. For example, code section 625 ILCS 5/11-402 states that any driver involved in an accident resulting in damage to a vehicle which is attended must immediately pull over and exchange information.

Penalties

Anyone who is arrested for a hit and run in Illinois which resulted in personal injuries or death can be subjected to chemical testing for drugs and/or alcohol and can be charged with a Class 4 felony, which is punishable by imprisonment for up to three years and a fine of up to $25,000.

However, a hit and run offender can instead by charged with a Class 2 felony (which is punishable by imprisonment for up to seven years and a fine of up to $25,000) if aggravating circumstances are present, or a Class 1 felony (punishable by imprisonment for up to 15 years and a fine of up to $25,000) if the hit and run resulted in the death of another person.

Additionally, anyone who flees the scene of an accident that resulted only in property damage to an attended vehicle can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.

Charged With a Traffic Offense? Contact a Local Traffic Violations Defense Lawyer

Attorney Christopher Cosley, sole attorney at The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley, is a well respected Rolling Meadows traffic violations defense attorney who has extensive experience defending clients charged with hit and runs, as well as a wide variety of other traffic offenses. Contact our office today for assistance.

Source:

http://www.dailyherald.com/news/20170918/tollway-worker-killed-in-hit-and-run-crash-along-the-tri-state

Embezzlement in Illinois: The Need to Know Basics

September 20th, 2017 at 8:48 am

embezzlement, Illinois embezzlement cases, Rolling Meadows white collar criminal lawyer, penalties for embezzlement, theftEmbezzlement is a type of theft that occurs when a person who has been entrusted with another’s property fraudulently keeps that property for his or her own personal gain or illegally transfers it to a third party. Embezzlement most frequently occurs when money is entrusted to the care of someone who then misappropriates that money in some way.

Examples of Embezzlement

While embezzlement can occur in countless ways, common examples of embezzlement include the following:

  • A waitress who pockets cash from a patron’s bill and enters a lesser amount into the cash register so that the till still balances at the end of her shift;
  • A payroll department manager of a large company who adds his family members who do not work for the company to the payroll in order to collect checks that they have not earned; or
  • The person in charge of counting a church’s weekly offerings who pockets $20 in cash from the collection each week.

Penalties

The penalties for embezzlement in Illinois vary depending on the value of what was stolen in accordance with code section 720 ILCS 5/16-1(b) of the Illinois Compiled Statutes. While those convicted of embezzlement can be forced to pay restitution and substantial fines, they can also be sentenced to serve significant time in prison. For example, consider the following prison sentences that can be handed down in Illinois embezzlement cases:

  • Theft not exceeding $500: Class A misdemeanor that is punishable by up to one year in jail. However, if the crime was committed in a place of worship or a school, or if the theft was of government property, then the crime is a Class 4 felony (punishable by up to three years in prison). Additionally, if the offender was previously convicted of another theft crime (for example, armed robbery, forgery, residential burglary etc.) then his or her embezzlement crime may also qualify as a Class 4 felony (punishable by up to three years in prison).
  • Theft of $500 to $10,000: Class 3 felony that is punishable by up to five years in prison. However, if the crime was committed in a place of worship or a school, or if the theft was of government property, then the crime is a Class 2 felony (punishable by up to seven years in prison).
  • Theft of $10,000 to $100,000: Class 2 felony that is punishable by up to seven years in prison. However, if the crime was committed in a place of worship or a school, or if the theft was of government property, then the crime is a Class 1 felony (punishable by up to 15 years in prison).
  • Theft of $500,000 to $1,000,000: Class 1 non-probationable felony that is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
  • Theft exceeding $1,000,000: Class X felony that is punishable by up to 30 years in prison.

Consult With a Local White Collar Criminal Lawyer

As you can see, embezzlement is a serious crime that carries steep penalties in Illinois. Therefore, anyone who has been charged with embezzlement is strongly encouraged to retain an experienced Rolling Meadows white collar criminal lawyer to defend his or her interests. At The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley our criminal defense team has extensive experience defending clients accused of white collar crimes and is intimately familiar was the unique complexities that white collar cases pose.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K16-1

The Consequences of Driving Without Insurance in Illinois

September 18th, 2017 at 9:32 am

Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney, driving without insurance, traffic offenses, Illinois traffic offense, suspended driver's licenseIn Illinois, drivers are required by the Illinois State Legislature Vehicle Code to carry at least a minimum amount of auto insurance. Currently, in order to meet our state’s auto insurance requirements, Illinois drivers must carry at least the following amounts of liability insurance:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury per person,
  • $50,000 for bodily injury coverage per accident,
  • $20,000 for property damage,
  • $25,000 for uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage per person, and
  • $50,000 for uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage per accident.

Some people mistakenly believe that driving without adequate auto insurance in Illinois is not a big deal; however, in reality, drivers who are caught failing to meet our state’s insurance requirements suffer a number of different consequences, the most severe of which are outlined below.

Fines for Driving Without Adequate Insurance

Under code section 625 ILCS 5/3-707 of the Illinois Compiled Statutes, fines for a first offense of driving without adequate auto insurance in Illinois range from $500 to $1,000 while repeat offenders are required to pay a $1,000 fine for an ordinary violation and a $2,500 fine if they were caught after causing an accident in which someone else was injured.

Additionally, Illinois residents who are convicted of driving without adequate insurance also have to pay an additional $100 reinstatement fee to get their driving privileges back if their driver’s license is suspended because they drove without adequate insurance.

Other Consequences

Illinois residents who are caught driving without adequate insurance can also have their driver’s licenses suspended. Generally speaking, a first time offender will have his or her driver’s license suspended for three months, at the end of which the license will be reinstated if the offender is able to show proof of insurance and pay the reinstatement fee.

However, each license suspension comes with certain provisions that must be abided by or else the suspension will be extended for an additional six months. Furthermore, it should be noted that driving on a suspended licenses in Illinois is a Class A misdemeanor that is punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,500.

Additionally, a driver who has been caught driving without adequate auto insurance may find that when he or she is able to obtain insurance, he or she will be required to pay higher insurance rates than drivers who do not have such a blemish on their record.

Consult With a Local Attorney

If you have been caught driving without adequate insurance in Illinois, then you are likely facing fines, having your driver’s license suspended, and perhaps other additional penalties. However, the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley may be able to help.

Attorney Chris Cosley is an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney who tirelessly fights for his clients’ rights and driving privileges and helps them avoid criminal convictions whenever possible. Contact the office today.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K3-707

Burglary: The Elements of the Offense in Illinois

September 13th, 2017 at 7:18 am

breaking and entering, burglary, burglary crime, Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer, Illinois criminal defenseBurglary is generally defined as the breaking and entering into the house of another for an unlawful purpose. However, it is important to note that burglary is one of those crimes that is defined slightly differently in each state.

In Illinois, breaking in is not a required element of burglary and there are several different listed entities beyond homes and structures that can be burgled. 

Illinois Statutes Section 19-1: Burglary

According to section 19-1 of the Illinois Statutes, an individual commits the crime of burglary when, without the authority to do so, he or she knowingly enters or remains within a building, watercraft, house trailer, aircraft, railroad car, motor vehicle, or any part thereof, while intending to commit theft or a felony therein. This statute can be broken down into the following key elements:

  • Knowingly Entering or Remaining: Some people mistakenly believe that an offender must physically break something to gain access (for example, a window) in order to commit the crime of burglary. However, in Illinois this is not the case. No physical breaking in is necessary. Instead, the offender must only knowingly enter or remain without the authority to do so. For example, if a teenager intentionally remains in a department store after closing, a court would likely find that he or she knowingly remained in a building without the authority to do so and has therefore fulfilled the knowingly enters or remains requirement of burglary.
  • Intending to Commit Theft or a Felony: This element of burglary is often the most difficult for the prosecution to prove as it speaks to the intent of the offender. In order to satisfy this element, the offender must have entered (or remained) in the building (or watercraft, house trailer, aircraft, etc.) while intending to commit theft or a felony while inside. For instance, if the teenager from the example above remained in the department store with the intent to steal merchandise, then a court would likely find that this second element of burglary has been satisfied.

But how can the prosecution prove that an alleged offender intended to commit theft or a felony? How can anyone know what was in the alleged offender’s mind at the time? For example, how do we know that the teenager intended to steal merchandise and was not just looking for a safe place to spend the night?

Proving criminal intent can be tricky but is generally established via either a confession or circumstantial evidence.

Reach Out to Us For Help

If you have been charged with burglary in Illinois, then the prosecution will need to prove each element discussed above in order to convict you. Therefore, it is critical that you retain an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer who is prepared to aggressively and skillfully defend you against each allegation put forth by the prosecution. Attorney Christopher Cosley, the sole attorney at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley, is just such an attorney and would be happy to discuss your legal options with you.

Source:

http://ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K19-1

DUI Testing in Illinois

September 11th, 2017 at 9:53 am

breathalyzer test, DUI testing, field sobriety tests, local DUI attorney, Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorneyWhen a police officer pulls you over on suspicion of driving under the influence in Illinois, he or she will likely ask to see your license and registration, ask if you have been drinking, and, if he or she still suspects that you are intoxicated, administer one or more of the field sobriety tests described below.

Field Sobriety Tests

Field sobriety tests are simple tests that police officers administer on the side of the road after pulling a driver over in order to predict blood alcohol concentrations of 0.08 and above. Approved standardized field sobriety tests in Illinois include:

  • The Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus: To administer this test the officer asks the driver to follow the tip of his or her pen or finger with only his or her eyes. During this test the officer is looking to see whether the driver is experiencing nystagmus, an involuntary jerking of the eye that is magnified when a person consumes alcohol or certain other drugs.
  • The Walk-and-Turn: During this test the officer asks the driver to walk in a straight line by placing one foot in front of the other, heel to toe, heel to toe, and so forth nine times, turn, and walk back on the line in the same manner. All steps are taken while keeping one’s arms at his or her sides.
  • The One-Legged Stand: Here the officer tells the driver to stand with one’s arms at his or her sides, raise one foot approximately six inches off the ground, and balance on one leg for 30 seconds.

Additionally, a police officer in Illinois can also administer a breathalyzer test on the side of the road in order to measure the amount of alcohol on a driver’s breath. A breathalyzer is a device that gives a very accurate estimate of the amount of alcohol present in the blood of the person who blows into it. However, it is important to note that the only way to actually test someone’s blood alcohol concentration is via a blood test, which police officers do not administer on the side of the road but do conduct at the station after arresting a driver for driving under the influence.

Drivers in Illinois implicitly consent to submitting to a breathalyzer test when asked to do so by virtue of driving in our state. Therefore, refusing a roadside breathalyzer test can carry steep consequences such as having your license suspended.

Accused of Driving Under the Influence? Contact a Local DUI Attorney

Any accusation of driving under the influence in Illinois should be taken very seriously as the penalties available for first-time DUI convictions can include up to one year of incarceration, a fine of up to $2,500, a license suspension of up to six months, and various other penalties as well. At The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley our experienced Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorneys are well aware of the huge toll that a DUI conviction can take on a person’s life. Therefore, we work tirelessly to provide excellent legal representation to each and every one of our clients.

Source:

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

What Does it Mean to Manufacture a Controlled Substance in Illinois?

September 6th, 2017 at 7:15 am

controlled substance, drug charges, Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer, manufacturing a controlled substance, Illinois drug crimesIn Illinois, it is illegal under state law to manufacture a controlled substance. But what does this actually mean? In general terms, it means that an individual can be convicted of a crime if he or she makes illegal drugs or other substances. However, the legal definition is quite a bit more specific.

Key Definitions re the Unlawful Manufacture of a Controlled Substance

Under the Illinois Controlled Substances Act the terms “manufacture” and “controlled substance” are carefully defined as follows below.

Manufacture: The Illinois Controlled Substances Act defines the term “manufacture” as “the production, preparation, propagation, compounding, conversion, or processing… either directly or indirectly by”:

  • Extracting substances of natural origin;
  • Chemical synthesis; or
  • A combination of extracting and chemical synthesis.

Note that this definition does include any packaging (or repackaging) of a controlled substance or labeling of its container. However, the term manufacturing does not include:

  • The preparation or compounding of a controlled substance by an ultimate user for his/her own use; or
  • Practitioners (i.e. licensed physicians, dentists, veterinarians, pharmacists, nurses, etc.), their agents, or those they supervise preparing, compounding, packaging, or labeling a controlled substance in the course of their professional practice or as part of lawful teaching, research, or chemical analysis.

Controlled Substance: Under the Illinois Controlled Substances Act, a “controlled substance” is defined as (1) a drug, immediate precursor, substance, or a synthetic drug listed in the Schedules of Article II of the Controlled Substances Act or (2) a drug, immediate precursor, or other substance designated as a controlled substance by the Department. Note that this definition does not include wine, distilled spirits, malt beverages, or tobacco.

Penalties

The penalties that a defendant who is convicted of unlawfully manufacturing a controlled substance in Illinois will face varies depending on how much of the controlled substance was manufactured. However, manufacture of a controlled substance is often tried as a Class 4 felony that is punishable by one to three years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000.

However, offenders can alternatively be placed on probation for up to 30 months (rather than being sentenced to serve time in prison) if the court finds that imprisonment is not appropriate nor necessary given the circumstances.

Reach Out to Us Today for Help

The unlawful manufacture of a controlled substance in Illinois is a serious criminal offense that is often tried as a felony carrying a hefty prison sentence. Therefore, if you have been charged with unlawfully manufacturing a controlled substance in Illinois it is vital that you retain a passionate Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer who possesses the requisite experience and knowhow to vigorously defend you. At The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley our seasoned legal time tirelessly fights for the rights of clients throughout Illinois and would be happy to fight for you. Contact our Rolling Meadows office today to schedule your initial consultation.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs5.asp?ActID=1941&ChapterID=53

FAQs About the Juvenile Justice System

September 4th, 2017 at 10:01 am

juvenile charges, juvenile crimes, juvenile justice system, Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorneys, Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyerRoughly 100 years ago a juvenile justice system was established in the United States in order to divert young offenders away from the standard criminal justice system and into an alternative system focused on rehabilitation. Today the juvenile justice system still places great importance on rehabilitation. Yet nowadays the system also focuses on punishment, accountability, and promoting public safety as well.

It is also important to note that today each state has it has own juvenile justice system and that each of these 51 systems embraces slightly different objective and operates slightly differently. Therefore, any case specific questions relating to the juvenile justice system in Illinois should be directed to a local juvenile charges defense lawyer. Still, some frequently asked questions about the juvenile justice system at large have been answered below.

Q: How does the juvenile justice system differ from adult courts?

A: The Illinois juvenile justice system differs from adult courts in a number of different ways but some notable difference include the following:

  • In the juvenile system, offenders are not prosecuted for committing “crimes” but are charged with “delinquent acts” instead;
  • Juveniles do not have a public trial but instead have a private adjudication hearing;
  • When a judge in the juvenile system is determining what steps should be taken after a minor is deemed to be delinquent the minor’s best interests are taken into account;
  • Juvenile adjudication hearings are much more informal than trials conducted in the adult system; and
  • The juvenile system embraces alternative sentences (such as parole, probation, diversionary programs, etc.) in cases where the adult system likely would not.

Q: Who can be tried as a juvenile in Illinois?

A: Generally speaking, a juvenile who commits a crime in Illinois before his or her 18th birthday will be tried in the juvenile system. However, under Illinois’ Juvenile Court Act minors who are 15, 16, or 17 years old may be tried as an adult if they are charged with certain serious crimes such as first degree murder, aggravated vehicular hijacking, aggravated sexual assault, etc.

Q: Are juvenile delinquency hearings confidential?

A: Here in Illinois, juvenile delinquency hearings are presumptively closed.

Q: Can juvenile records be expunged in Illinois?

A: Juvenile records in Illinois are sealed when the offender becomes an adult. This means that certain entities (such as most potential employers) will not have access to the record, however, other entities (such as law enforcement organizations and the military) will be able to view it. However, the Illinois Juvenile Justice Commission notes that an Illinois juvenile record can be expunged if the offender is at least 17 years old (or 18 if the record contains a misdemeanor offense) and the youth:

  • Was arrested but not charged;
  • Was charged but not found to be delinquent;
  • Completed court supervision; or
  • Was found delinquent for a business offense, a petty offense, or a misdemeanor offense.

Additionally, some juvenile felony records can also be expunged, however some can not. Whether or not a felony juvenile record can be expunged is highly case specific, so be sure to direct questions about expunging a juvenile felony record to a local juvenile charges defense attorney.

Contact a Rolling Meadows Juvenile Charges Defense Attorney

If your child has had a run in with the law in Illinois you likely have a lot of questions. At The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley our experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorneys would be happy to answer your questions and advise you of your child’s legal options during an initial consultation at our office.

Source:

http://www.icjia.state.il.us/assets/pdf/ResearchReports/IL_Juvenile_Justice_System_Walkthrough_0810.pdf

Back to Top Back to Top Back to Top