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Archive for the ‘Your Rights’ Category

What Not to Do if You Are Arrested

November 21st, 2019 at 11:00 am

IL defense attorney, Illinois criminal lawyerBeing arrested is a very scary thing. Law enforcement in Rolling Meadows arrest people every day, and these individuals often do not know what to do when it happens. Just as there are certain things you should do, there are also things you should never do. Taking the wrong steps at this point could hurt your case in the future. Below are the five things you should never do if you are arrested.

Do Not Say Anything

If you are arrested, you have the right to remain silent and that is exactly what you should do. When police read you your Miranda rights, they will tell you that anything you say could be used against you, and they mean it. The chances are very good that they will take your words out of context and use it to hurt your case in court. Do not say anything to police officers except that you want to speak to an attorney.

Do Not Resist Arrest

Resisting arrest is a very dangerous thing to do in Illinois. Even trying to swat away the officer’s hands when they are trying to put handcuffs on you could result in additional charges if the officer views it as assault. Also, if law enforcement believes that you are resisting arrest, they have the right to subdue you, which can quickly become dangerous.

Do Not Run

Resisting arrest and fleeing the police are two different things. If you resist arrest, such as arguing with the officer and telling them they have the wrong person, they can subdue you but they likely will not shoot you. If you run, however, they might use weapons to prevent you from running away. Running is much more dangerous than simply resisting arrest and should never be done.

Do Not Let the Police to Search You or Your Property

There are times when the police can search you. If they arrest you, for example, they can search your person, which typically means going through your pockets. Also, if your vehicle is at the scene and police notice something that is in plain sight, such as a joint or an open container of alcohol, they can search your car as well. However, you should not let them search more than that.

Without your consent, law enforcement must obtain a warrant to search you or your property. Providing your consent can give police access to evidence that they will use against you and that will hurt your case.

Do Not Go Back Into Your House

If the police come to your home to arrest you, they may ask if you want to go back inside to say goodbye to your spouse or kids, or even to get a jacket. Do not accept this offer. If you do, the police will escort you inside and immediately start looking for evidence, even if they do not conduct a thorough search. Remember that you can call your spouse and children from the police station, and you do not need anything else that badly. Just allow the police to take you to the station and you will help protect your rights and your case.

Were You Arrested? Call an Illinois Criminal Defense Attorney

If you have been arrested, you are likely very scared and confused. However, you do not have to go through it alone. Our skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley can help. Christopher Cosley knows how to ensure your rights are protected, get evidence thrown out when those rights were not upheld, and give you the best chance of success in court. If you or someone you love has been arrested, call us today at 847-394-3200 for your free consultation.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K31-1

Can Police Search Your Phone?

November 14th, 2019 at 10:58 am

searchImagine police pulled you over in a traffic stop. Maybe they suspect you of a DUI, or maybe they want to cite you for having a broken taillight. Whatever the reason, they approach your window and begin to question you. They may even become aggressive and demand that you hand over your phone. Perhaps they even order you to unlock it for them or provide them with your password. This is a scary situation, as everyone has personal and confidential information on their phones these days. The question is, are police allowed to search your phone?

U.S. Supreme Court Decides on Cell Phone Searches

In 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court heard the case of Riley v. California. The defendant had been stopped by police for expired registration tags on his vehicle. During the stop, the officer also learned that the defandant’s driver’s license was suspended and that he was carrying a number of firearms in his car. The officer also took his phone, which the officer claimed had further incriminating evidence on it.

The Supreme Court found in favor of the defendant and determined that police do not have the authority to search a person’s phone. The reason given for this was that modern smartphones have a wealth of information about a person. By accessing your phone, a person could determine where you live, work, what your Social Security number is, and more. The court determined this was an invasion of privacy.

However, although the Supreme Court made this ruling several years ago, there are still some instances in which police can search your phone.

When Can Police Search Your Phone?

Under the Fourth Amendment, all American citizens are protected from unlawful search and seizures. However, if law enforcement has probable cause that your phone contains evidence of a crime, they can obtain a search warrant for your phone. If a judge determines there is probable cause and issues a search warrant, you will have to relinquish your phone so law enforcement can search it.

The only time law enforcement can search your phone without a warrant is when you provide your consent. Police officers often try to get around this by demanding, instead of asking for your phone. They do so in a way that makes individuals feel as though they do not have a choice. Unfortunately, in these instances, if you give police your phone and unlock it to grant them access, even begrudgingly, you have given consent and the police can search your phone.

It is extremely important that you never give police your phone unless they have a warrant. When consent is provided, it could hurt your case if police do in fact find evidence to use against you.

Did Police Unlawfully Search Your Phone? Call Our Illinois Criminal Defense Lawyer

When police unlawfully search your phone, any evidence obtained from that search is inadmissible in court. This provides a solid defense for many offenses, including distracted driving. If you have been charged with a crime after police searched your phone, you need the help of a skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer. At the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley, an attorney will always ensure your rights are upheld, and he will also get illegally obtained evidence thrown out of court. If you are facing charges, call us today at 847-394-3200 to schedule a free consultation.

 

Source:

https://scholar.google.ca/scholar_case?case=9647156672357738355&hl=en&as_sdt=6&as_vis=1&oi=scholarr

 

Challenging a Search Warrant

March 7th, 2019 at 3:44 pm

warrantDuring a criminal trial, the prosecution’s case often rests on evidence seized by law enforcement officers during a search. In order for that search to be lawful, the owner of the property must voluntarily agree to the search, or law enforcement officers must have a valid search warrant. When police officers have a search warrant, the owners of the property must never interfere with the search. However, this does not mean that the search cannot be contested in the future.

Challenging a search warrant during a trial is a very common defense for those accused of committing a crime. If the defense can prove a search was unlawful, any evidence obtained during that search is deemed inadmissible in court. This can lead to the entire case being dismissed.

So, how does one challenge the validity of a search warrant? In Rolling Meadows, there are three possible ways to do it.

Unlawful Items Seized

With a search warrant, law enforcement officials must indicate the exact property they plan to search, and the evidence they are looking for. When they conduct the search, they are only allowed to take the property specified in the warrant. If they find evidence of another crime, or evidence such as electronic data that was not listed on the search warrant, they cannot seize that property.

The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects digital devices from illegal search and seizures. In order to be seized, the search warrant must explicitly state officers are searching for these items.

False Sworn Affidavit

When law enforcement officials are trying to obtain a search warrant, they must sign a sworn affidavit. The Illinois Constitution and Criminal Code allows not only police officers, but also private citizens, to provide these sworn affidavits. An affidavit states a person’s case for the search of a certain area.

When this affidavit contains false information, this is sometimes grounds for challenging a search warrant. Defendants that believe the affidavit contains false information can petition the court for a Franks hearing. These hearings are named after a landmark case in 1978 in which Franks was the defendant.

During a Franks hearing, the defendant is required to prove the signer of the affidavit knowingly or intentionally provided false information, or that they had a reckless disregard for the truth. It is not enough to show an officer was simply negligent or made a mistake.

Warrant Staleness

When law enforcement obtains a search warrant, they are required to search a property within a reasonable time frame. This is due to the fact that in many cases, valuable evidence is likely to be lost, hidden, or destroyed before the search is conducted.

For example, if officers obtained a warrant to search a home looking for drugs, they should conduct the search shortly after receiving the warrant. If they wait too long the evidence could be consumed or destroyed.

Warrant staleness can often provide a strong defense when challenging a search warrant. However, there are times when it is not as effective. For example, digital files are designed for longevity and so, warrant staleness may not provide a valid defense for crimes such as child pornography.

Let a Qualified Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense Attorney Handle Your Case

There are several ways to challenge a search warrant in court, but those accused of committing a crime should never attempt to argue those reasons on their own. A skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer will know the law surrounding searches and seizures and will apply it to any case that may involve an unlawful search. If you have been accused of a crime, or you believe law enforcement conducted an illegal search of your property, contact the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley today at 847-394-3200. We will ensure you are treated fairly and will fight for your rights in court. Call today for your free consultation.

 

Source:

https://scholarlycommons.law.wlu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1278&context=casefiles

Police Brutality

December 21st, 2018 at 2:21 pm

IL defense attorneyMost law enforcement officers conduct themselves professionally and treat those who they are arresting with as much respect as possible. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Police brutality affects people of all demographics, though minorities are disproportionately the victims of unnecessary police violence. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was hit more than 50 times by police batons, and the police who administered the beating were acquitted. A black undercover police officer himself fell victim to police violence when he was disguised as a protester — his duty being to monitor illegal acts within the crowd to make arrests later — during a St. Louis demonstration in 2017.

Residents had taken to the streets in a planned protest over the acquittal of a police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black man, then planted a weapon on him after he was dead. The undercover officer, who was wearing a shirt that revealed his waistband — indicating that he was not armed — was beaten with batons for no reason by three police officers. Earlier text messages between the officers revealed that they had planned on carrying out such beatings. When they discovered that the man they had chosen to beat with riot batons was an undercover cop, they destroyed his phone, tried to contact witnesses to influence their testimony, and lied to a federal grand jury. The officers are facing four offenses, one of which carries a maximum 10-year prison sentence, while the other three crimes carry sentences of 20 years each.

Were You the Victim of Police Brutality?

In situations where you were arrested without probable cause or police used unnecessary violence to subdue and handcuff you, your civil rights were violated. In such scenarios, you stand a good chance to have the charges placed against you dropped, depending on what those were for. It all depends on what you were arrested for. In many cases of police brutality, law enforcement was simply carrying out a routine traffic stop, was performing a stop and frisk, or was trying to disperse a crowd during a protest. In such instances in which you, both the defendant and the victim, were not arrested for a crime of violence, charges may be dropped if there is enough evidence to support your claims of police brutality. A Cook County criminal defense lawyer can help you compile evidence to submit a compelling case that police brutality did occur. Cell phone footage, police body cameras, surveillance cameras, and witnesses can all be used to prove the truth.

Contact a Cook County Criminal Defense Attorney Today

Illinois has a long history of police brutality, just like every other state in the country. For justice and to clear your name of wrongdoing, you need to work with an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney. Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley today at 847-394-3200 for a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/30/us/st-louis-officers-undercover-assault/index.html

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/long-painful-history-police-brutality-in-the-us-180964098/

 

Four Ways to Avoid Incriminating Yourself After Your Arrest

December 5th, 2018 at 11:24 pm

incriminationWhen you are arrested, your primary objective should be to defend your case to reduce your chance of being convicted as much as possible. Simply being innocent of a crime does not guarantee you will not be convicted. We can estimate the number of Americans who are wrongfully convicted each year, but we cannot know for sure just how many innocent people head to jail and in some cases, die by execution. But we do know that it does happen. Your criminal defense lawyer’s job is to protect you from being convicted. But there are ways you can reduce your chance of being convicted, too. Take some time to educate yourself on ways to avoid self-incrimination.

Choose Not to Talk with Law Enforcement

The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees you the right to avoid self-incrimination. During interactions with law enforcement, you are under no obligation to answer officers’ questions or to even make small talk with them. After you are arrested, tell the police that you do not want to talk to them. Follow that statement by saying that you would like to speak with your attorney. Officers are required to stop questioning you when you request your lawyer.

Retain a Lawyer as Soon as Possible

The sooner you start working with a lawyer, the more effectively he or she can help you defend your case. This is because by retaining a lawyer shortly after your arrest – or if possible, retaining a lawyer before your arrest – gives your lawyer time to coach you through interactions with law enforcement and gather the evidence you will use to support your position in court.

Have Incriminating Statements you Made Thrown Out

When you are interacting with law enforcement, you are scared. You are unsure about the outcome you are facing, and in these moments, it is quite possible that you will make statements that can work against you. Your lawyer can file a motion to suppress certain statements if you were coerced into making them or if you were not read your Miranda Rights. Coercion can happen when you are physically harmed by an officer or otherwise made to feel uncomfortable, such as being denied water.

Keep Your Case to Yourself

Whether you have been arrested or not, you should always keep your case’s details to yourself. You can never know who might be asked to provide testimony about your case. The best way to limit the amount of information that can be given in court and potentially used against you, even information that initially seems neutral or like it could work in your benefit, is to keep it between you and your lawyer.

Work with an Experienced Cook County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Start working with an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible after your arrest. To learn more about your rights and how you can avoid incriminating yourself during interactions with law enforcement and the court, schedule your initial legal consultation with our team at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley today. Call us at 847-394-3200.

 

Sources:

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/phenomena/2014/04/28/how-many-people-are-wrongly-convicted-researchers-do-the-math/

Privacy Rights Upheld in Recent Supreme Court Case

September 14th, 2018 at 8:31 am

Chicago criminal defense lawyer unreasonable search and seizureIf you are facing a criminal charge, this does not mean that you are not entitled to the same rights and protections afforded to other individuals in the United States, including the right to privacy. The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution affords citizens the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. Search warrants are used to ensure that if a search is being conducted, then there is a legitimate reason and cause for conducting the search. There are exceptions to this rule, however. Recently, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld the right to privacy for suspects regarding warrantless searches.

Collins v. Virginia

In the case of Collins v. Virginia, the defendant was suspected of being in possession of a motorcycle that had been stolen. The motorcycle was parked under a three-walled enclosure that was covered with a tarp. This enclosure was located at the defendant’s girlfriend’s house. The house also had a traditional garage that could completely block the inside of the garage from outside view. The police suspected that this motorcycle was parked at the defendant’s girlfriend’s home and therefore went to examine the scene. Instead of obtaining a search warrant, the police officers proceeded up the driveway to where the motorcycle was parked under the tarp. The motorcycle turned out to be the stolen property they were looking for, and the defendant was arrested.

At trial, the defendant argued that his fundamental right to privacy that is guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment was violated because the police did not have a valid search warrant for the property. The state argued that finding the motorcycle without a search warrant fell under the automobile exception. The automobile exception states that police are allowed to search a vehicle when there is probable cause that the vehicle contained some type of evidence or contraband.

The Court found that the automobile exception was not applicable in this case. Instead, the three-walled tarp enclosure could be considered a part of the home. As a part of the home, it receives the same type of heightened rights to privacy as the living area of the home. The Court went on further to state that the automobile exception applies only to situations where the alleged evidence or contraband is inside of a vehicle, not sitting underneath a tarp on someone else’s property.

An Attorney Can Help You Today

If you have been charged with a criminal offense and are concerned your rights have been violated, contact experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney Christopher M. Cosley. Attorney Cosley is dedicated to using every possible defense applicable under the circumstances, including improper searches due to lack of a search warrant. We know that just because you might be charged with a crime, you should not lose your rights. Contact us today at 847-394-3200 for a free consultation.

Sources:
https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/automobile_exception
https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/17pdf/16-1027_7lio.pdf

Revoked vs. Suspended Driver’s License: The Difference in Illinois

July 5th, 2017 at 9:09 am

driver’s license reinstatement, driving privileges, suspended driver's license, suspended or revoked license, revoked driver’s licenseSection 6-303 of the Illinois Code makes it illegal to drive a motor vehicle if your driver’s license is revoked or suspended. But what is the difference between a revoked license and a suspended license?

An article from The Balance summarizes the key difference well by noting that “a suspended license is bad and a revoked license is very bad—a suspended license is a temporary hardship, but a revoked license is permanent.” Consider the following additional differences that differentiate a revoked driver’s license from a suspended driver’s license in Illinois.

Key Differences

The main difference between a revoked driver’s license and a suspended license is that suspensions have an end date while revocations mean an indefinite loss of your driving privileges. This is because a suspended driver’s license can be reinstated after you have attended a reinstatement hearing with a Secretary of State hearing officer and have complied with all post-hearing requirements.

A revoked driver’s license, on the other hand, can never be reinstated. However, this does not mean necessarily mean that you will never be allowed to drive again. If your Illinois driver’s license has been revoked, then you are allowed to apply for a new driver’s license after the specified period of revocation has passed (unless a lifetime revocation has been placed on your driving privileges).

Other important differences between a revoked and a suspended driver’s license include:

  • Why the DMV Limited Your Driving Privileges: The Illinois Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) suspends driver’s licenses for a wide variety of reasons (for example, traffic violations, failure to appear in court, parking violations, driving under the influence (DUI), failure to pay child support, etc.). However, the DMV only revokes a driver’s license for serious violations (for example, committing a criminal DUI, stealing a vehicle, leaving the scene of an accident, being convicted of drag racing, etc.).
  • Applicable Fees: The fee charged to reinstate a suspended Illinois driver’s license is usually substantially lower than the fee charged in connection with revoked licenses. How much the reinstatement fee for a suspended license is varies depending on the reason for the suspension but is often $70 (although it can be as much as $500), while the fee for a revoked license is usually $500.

Unsure if Your Driver’s License is Revoked or Suspended?

If you are unsure if your Illinois driver’s license is revoked or suspended, feel free to check the status of your license by visiting the DMV’s website. Even if your driver’s license is valid it is a good idea to periodically check your driving record just to make sure that everything is in order.

Reach Out to Us Today for Help

Losing your driving privileges can greatly impact your life. Day-to-day tasks like getting to work, picking your kids up from school, and even going to the grocery store are suddenly much more challenging. However, do not lose hope. There may be a way to get you back on the road sooner than expected. For example, you may be able to obtain a restricted driving permit if you agree to use a breath-alcohol ignition interlock device.

At The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley, our experienced Rolling Meadows driver’s license reinstatement lawyers have a high success rate when fighting to obtain restricted driving permits and full reinstatement of driver’s licenses on behalf of our clients. Let us fight for you.

Sources:

http://www.ilgagov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K6-303

https://www.thebalance.com/suspended-vs-revoked-license-527274

Criminal Trespass to a Vehicle in Illinois

March 25th, 2016 at 7:00 am

Illinois criminal trespass to a vehicle, Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense AttorneyMany criminal defendants are unaware that there is such a thing as criminal trespass to a vehicle until they are facing criminal charges for it. A typical scenario of how these charges arise involves a teenager who “borrows” a car or some other motor vehicle not belonging to him without permission and then takes the vehicle for a joyride. However, when the teen returns with the vehicle, he often finds himself under arrest and facing criminal charges for trespass to a vehicle.

Anyone who is facing criminal trespassing charges needs to seek out the help of an experienced criminal defense lawyer immediately.

What is Criminal Trespass to a Vehicle in Illinois?

Under 720 ILCS 5/21-2, a person who knowingly and without authority or permission enters or operates a vehicle of another can be found to have committed criminal trespass to a vehicle.   

Vehicles for the purpose of the criminal trespass statute can include:

  • A car, truck or motorcycle;
  • Aircraft;
  • Watercraft, such as boats; and
  • Recreational vehicles, such as snowmobiles or all terrain vehicles.

Overstaying your welcome in a vehicle could also constitute a criminal trespass to a vehicle. If the vehicle owner says “get out,” then remaining in the vehicle could amount to an unauthorized occupation of the vehicle.

Charges for criminal trespass to a vehicle are based on whether the defendant had the intent to deprive the owner of the vehicle of his or her car indefinitely. If the defendant only had the intention to use the vehicle for a short period of time, or to occupy the vehicle only temporarily, then the defendant might be guilty of criminal trespass if no good defenses to his or her actions exist.

How is Criminal Trespass to a Vehicle Different from Theft of an Automobile?

Vehicle theft in Illinois is governed by the Illinois general theft provisions of the law. Vehicle theft occurs when a person, knowingly and without permission, takes possession of a vehicle that is not his, with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of the use of the vehicle. Taking possession of the vehicle can be the byproduct of use of force, deception, threats, or by knowingly receiving the stolen vehicle.

Theft requires that the person who took the vehicle intended to permanently deprive the owner of the vehicle. Criminal trespass to a vehicle, on the other hand, does not. Joyriding is the most typical cause of trespass to a vehicle charges because by taking a vehicle for a joyride, the trespasser only intends to occupy the vehicle for the duration of the ride, and no longer. The joyrider has the intention of returning the vehicle at the outset.

Let Our Attorneys Assist You

Criminal trespassing charges are serious and if you are facing trespass to a vehicle charges, you need to consult with a criminal defense lawyer right away. Please contact a skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney immediately to discuss your case and to learn how we can assist you throughout each step of the way if you are facing criminal charges in Illinois.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K21-2

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=1876&ChapterID=53&SeqStart=36500000&SeqEnd=39200000

Giving a False Confession

January 13th, 2016 at 9:35 am

Illinois defense lawyer, Illinois criminal attorney, criminal defense, Many people who have been taken into custody feel pressured and scared. When criminal suspects do not know their rights, there is a chance that law enforcement will take liberties with the suspect, questioning them and trying to draw out a confession, when the suspect should have asked for an attorney. Juveniles accused of a crime are particularly at risk for this to happen to them. Sometimes, law enforcement will say that the suspect admitted to something, or confessed, when in reality they did not, or sometimes law enforcement will twist something the suspect says and call it a confession. Regardless of how it happens, these are not true confessions. They are fake or coerced, and should not be taken as the truth.

Police and prosecutors will treat a false confession as if it were real, and proving that the confession was fake or coerced from the start can be challenging. A false confession can lead to a criminal conviction, a long prison sentence, and a lasting criminal record.

Why Do Suspects Give False Confessions in the First Place?

There are a number of reasons why a suspect might give a false confession. They might be overwhelmed by the whole situation, they might be pressured into the false confession, or police might have threatened the suspect into confessing or tricked the suspect by using psychological manipulation. The police might suggest that they have more evidence than they really do against the suspect, or that the charges that the suspect faces are less serious than they really are. These techniques can all be used to elicit a false confession from a criminal suspect.

Some suspects are vulnerable from the outset, and are more likely than the average person to give a false confession. Criminal suspects who have developmental disabilities, cognitive impairments, or emotional issues are more likely to crack under pressure, or are more likely to not understand what it is that they are doing. These individuals can be susceptible to influence, high-pressure tactics, and the power of suggestion.

Additionally, young individuals who are facing criminal charges may not fully understand the impact of what giving a false confession means for them. A young person might give a false confession because they are scared, or because they are trying to cover for their friends who perpetrated the crime. Juveniles often have an imperfect understanding about what the consequences are to admitting criminal guilt.

Anyone who is facing criminal charges should ask for an experienced criminal lawyer and should not tell the police anything until discussing their situation with a lawyer first.

Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley

Giving a false confession is a serious matter, because it can lead to a conviction which can put you in jail for a crime you did not commit. Let an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney help you develop your criminal defense if you are facing charges. Please contact the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley. We can also be reached by calling (847) 394-3200.

 

Sources:

http://www.innocenceproject.org/causes-wrongful-conviction/false-confessions-or-admissions

Defendants Rights: What Right Do You Have to See the Evidence?

November 26th, 2015 at 4:06 pm

Illinois legal system, Illinois defense attorney, Illinois criminal lawyer,Criminal defendants have some of the highest constitutional protections in the criminal justice system. The reason for these rights and protections is because the stakes are so high. If someone is convicted of a crime, they may not only lose their freedom, but also a host of other rights. One of the most important constitutional protections is the right to see the evidence against you. But, even this right has its limits.

Right to Exculpatory Evidence

The most basic right in a criminal trial is the right to see any exculpatory evidence. This means you have a right to see anything the prosecution has possession of, or knows about, that may show you are not guilty of the crime for which you are being charged. This right was laid out in the U.S. Supreme Court case called Brady V. Maryland.

Other Evidence Rights

You also have a constitutional right to confront any witnesses. This limits the use of out of court statements by the prosecution during your trial. You have the right to cross-examine witnesses. You also have a right to see what evidence the prosecution plans on presenting against you in most instances.

You have a right to challenge the prosecution’s evidence. For example, if the prosecution is going to have an expert testify about hair samples left at the scene, you can present your own expert witness or argue that the prosecution’s evidence is flawed.

What Defendants Do Not Have a Right to See

There are some things that as a criminal defendant you do not have a right to see before trial, or perhaps even at all. There may be some national security issues that limit your access to evidence.

More commonly, evidence called impeachment evidence does not have to be disclosed before trial. This is evidence that would show a witness was not telling the truth.

In some cases the identity of confidential informants may be protected and you will not have access to some information about these often key parts to the prosecution’s case.

Criminal charges are always a serious matter. If you have been accused or charged with a crime, you need to consult with a knowledgeable, tough, and experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer right away. Do not to talk to anyone about your case before you have talked to a lawyer. Your freedom could depend on it. Call to schedule a consultation today.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=1966&ChapterID=54&SeqStart=3100000&SeqEnd=4200000

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