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 the ‘Cook County criminal defense attorney’ tag

Sex Abuse Charges and Elderly Defendants

November 18th, 2014 at 10:00 am

senior prisoners, Illinois criminal defense attorney, Illinois defense lawyerIt should go without saying that sex crimes are serious offenses that have severe consequences associated with them. These cases present many issues that need to be addressed, but some cases involve special circumstances that deserve extra consideration. As one report points out, one type of sex offense case that involves additional issues are those in which an elderly defendant is charged with a crime stemming from facts that allegedly occurred decades ago.

Health Concerns

In addition to the myriad of other issues inherently involved in sex crime cases, those in which an elderly defendant is charged usually have an additional set of unique factors to consider. Not only can these cases involve displacing a criminal defendant from his or her place of residence, but can also involve extradition issues, which may be more common the further back in time the facts supporting the charges supposedly occurred. All of this is compounded by any health concerns elderly defendants have, which can also vary in severity. In some cases, an elderly defendant’s life could be placed at serious risk before they are even tried for their crime.

Not Only Sex Cases

Of course, these same concerns may be present in any criminal case involving an elderly defendant and may be particularly apparent in cases that involve the potential for extradition, the transportation of the defendant from one jurisdiction to another to face charges where the crime allegedly occurred. According to some experts, the cost of transporting and housing criminal defendants in this scenario can not only be dangerous, but is likely to also be expensive. These defendants would need to be treated and cared for while in custody, something many prisons are not equipped to do. Even if the defendant is treated at an outpatient hospital, it takes additional prison staff to accompany him or her. Another argument experts raise involves the acknowledgment that the purpose of incarceration in many criminal cases is to protect the public and ensure the defendant will not re-offend, something that may be less of a concern when dealing with an elderly defendant.

More Appropriate Sentences

The high cost of imprisoning elderly defendants coupled with the fact that most of them no longer pose a threat is leading many to argue that other methods of punishment may be more suitable for this population. One such alternative form of punishment is home confinement, which may be able to fulfill many of the goals of incarceration without the need for a prison sentence.

Criminal Defense Attorney

If you or someone you know has been charged with a crime in the Chicago area, do not hesitate to discuss the facts of your case with an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney who can advise you of your rights. The experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley are prepared to listen to the facts of your case and defend your rights. Contact us today for a consultation.

Do Risk Assessments Have a Place in the Criminal Justice System?

September 11th, 2014 at 7:55 am

assessment of criminal risk, Illinois defense lawyer, Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney, recidivismAccording to a recent article published by the Pekin Daily Times, predicting future risk within the context of the criminal justice system has gotten significant attention lately. As described in the article, the concept of predictive analytics involves taking information from a large amount of data in order to identify patterns and make future predictions. While not always 100 percent accurate, the process does reveal information about the future that is somewhat reliable. The practice of predictive analysis is typically used in the business world, in making military decisions, and in scientific study. Now, it seems to also be leaking into the criminal justice system, which may not be a good thing.

Risk Assessments at Sentencing

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder recently gave a speech in which he stated his position on using risk assessments at the sentencing of criminal defendants: he does not think it is a good idea. Holder went so far as to caution against such use, saying his concern is that doing so has the potential of seriously undermining efforts at individualized and equal justice. Equal justice, he said, can only be achieved using an individualized approach that takes the particular defendant, along with the crime committed, into consideration.

While risk assessments may not be commonly used in the context of criminal sentencing, similar models have been used for a long time when making parole decisions. Using reductive analytics in the context of the later part of punishment, Holder says, is not as dangerous as using it in front-end applications like in initial sentencing decisions. There is a need to ensure that doing so will not have unintended consequences.

Despite the warnings, several states, including the state of Illinois, have begun employing the use of risk assessment tools within their criminal justice systems. One of the supposed benefits some states say they are gleaning from sentencing defendants based on risk factors is to decrease their prison population. However, the danger in doing so remains that these states risk imposing very different sentences on defendants for similar crimes. Holder and the U.S. Department of Justice reportedly requested the U.S. Sentencing Commission to take an in-depth look at the use of predictive analysis in sentencing and to issue policy recommendations based on their findings.

Criminal Defense Attorney

If you or someone you know has been charged with a crime in the Chicago area, it is important to consult with an experienced Cook County defense attorney about your case as soon as possible. The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley are prepared to represent clients in many types of criminal matters in both DuPage and Cook County, including through the sentencing phase of the criminal process. Please feel free to contact us today to schedule a consultation in our Rolling Meadows office.

Will Cook County Courtrooms Feature Cameras?

April 29th, 2014 at 12:33 pm

courtroom camera, Cook County courtrooms, justice system, courtroom camera in Cook CountyThe Cook County court system has been experiencing its fair share of problems lately. The latest issue facing Chief Judge Timothy Evans involves awaiting the Illinois Supreme Court’s decision on his request to allow the presence of cameras in the County’s courtrooms. He made that request over two years ago, and the Supreme Court has yet to provide its answer to his application.

Cook County Stands Alone

Cook County’s is the only application that the state’s high court has not approved among the counties who have applied for the permission. Cook County’s application was filed in January 2012, only a few days after the Supreme Court’s ruling that allowed audio and video recordings in courtrooms in certain circumstances.

While Cook County’s application has been pending, several cases were tried in the county that attracted public interest and probably would have produced requests for courtroom cameras. Such cases ranged from murder charges to alleged acts of terrorism.

Why has the Application not been Approved?

The Illinois Supreme Court has said it still needs to work out some issues with approving Cook County’s application as to how the program would function in the largest county in the state. The Court needs to decide whether cameras would be limited to one courtroom, a specific courthouse, or only used in criminal cases. A timetable has not been identified for the Illinois Supreme Court’s decision, but the Court intends to have a decision sooner rather than later.

Some of the Court’s reservation in making a decision may be attributable to the fact that not everyone in Cook County is on board with the application. Both the State’s Attorney’s Office and the Public Defender’s Office have concerns about the potential impact the cameras may have on testimony from victims and witnesses, especially those who fear they may be in danger because of their cooperation. In addition, there is the concern that allowing cameras will do nothing to help the public gain a better understanding of how the justice system works, but will give in to the media’s publicizing of scandalous cases.

While they realize that it is more than likely that cameras will eventually be allowed, they are hopeful that their concerns will be addressed on a case-by-case basis. Other counties’ circuit court judges who are participating in the program have approved every request from news outlets to have cameras at hearings, but judges who handle individual cases have later rejected the requests. The trial judges have the final say when making a decision regarding cameras in their courtrooms, and their decisions cannot be appealed.

Criminal Defense Attorney

Whether cameras will be allowed in Cook County courtrooms and under what circumstances remains to be seen. If you or someone you know has been charged with a crime, it is important to take steps to preserve your rights. You first step should be consulting with an experienced criminal defense attorney. Contact the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley today for a consultation if you are facing criminal charges in Cook County.

Paul Pless’s Legal Troubles Continue

February 27th, 2014 at 12:11 pm

 prostitution, arrest, criminal law, Chicago criminal defense lawyer, criminal defense, Illinois criminal attorneyThe News-Gazette recently reported on a story involving the latest legal woes with which former University of Illinois administrator Paul Pless is dealing. Just over two years ago, investigators discovered that Pless was altering the grades and test scores of law school applicants in his then position as the assistant dean of admissions at the University of Illinois College of Law (UI). Now, he is facing criminal charges for his alleged involvement in a prostitution ring.

Criminal Charges

The article reports that the McClean County State’s Attorney’s Office charged Pless with solicitation of a sexual act, graded as a Class A misdemeanor, after he was arrested on December 30th by police. He is expected to appear before a judge on February 19th for a hearing in connection with the charge.

Mr. Pless was one of four men who were arrested the same day as the result of a prostitution sting operation that was being conducted by the Bloomington Police Department. Many details are being kept confidential by police since the case is ongoing, but the State’s Attorney did say the circumstances leading to Pless’s arrest involved a confidential source who was working with the police, posing as a prostitute.

Maximum Punishment

All of the men were transported to McLean County jail after their arrest, but they were all later released on their own recognizance. If they are convicted of the Class A misdemeanor, they can face a maximum of 364 days in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.00. The judge presiding over sentencing will have discretion to impose a lesser sentence, and may be inclined to do so, particularly if any of the defendants do not have a prior criminal record.

Pless’s Background

Pless once held a prestigious position at UI law school, well known for recruiting promising students to attend the school. He ended up resigning from his position in the fall of 2011 after it was discovered that he altered law school applicant’s credentials in order to make them appear as more attractive candidates for the school. Investigators determined that Pless engaged in improper behavior in at least six out of the ten law school classes that he was responsible in evaluating for admission.

It remains to be seen what the final result of Pless’s criminal case will be. When police work involves undercover informants, important constitutional protections apply. For example, there are strict rules regarding what information authorities need to secretly record conversations and otherwise collect information that may later be used in criminal trials.

Hiring an experienced Illinois criminal defense attorney is important in order to protect your rights and ensure that proper protocols were followed at all times. Contact us today if you or someone you know has been charged with a crime.

Do I Have To Submit To Chemical Testing For a DUI?

October 19th, 2013 at 2:26 pm

If you’re pulled over in Illinois and the officer has reason to believe that you may be under the influence of alcohol, he or she can ask you to complete a field sobriety test. Depending on the results of that test, the officer may request that you complete a chemical test to verify your blood alcohol content (BAC).  Knowing what you are required to do in these circumstances can make a big difference in whether you lose driving privileges or not. If you have been arrested for DUI, your first step should be to contact your Illinois criminal law attorney for advice.

Chemical Testing For a DUIIn Illinois, failing a chemical test or refusing to submit to chemical testing might lead to statutory summary suspension or revocation. It’s important to note that these rules apply to Illinois drivers pulled over for DUI in other states, too. If you refuse to submit to chemical testing, immediate penalties will apply. However, if you contact a DUI attorney immediately, you can fight a license suspension.

For the first occasion in which you refuse to submit to chemical testing, your driving privileges will be suspended for 12 months. On the 31st day of that suspension, you might become eligible for driving relief, which involves a monitoring device driving permit and the installation of a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device. For a second offense, driving privileges can be suspended for three years with no opportunity for driving relief.

In the heat of the moment as you’re pulled over for suspected DUI, it can be frustrating for an officer to demand that you submit to a test. If you are arrested for DUI following the incident, you should hire a Chicago DUI lawyer to manage your case. Don’t risk statutory summary suspension by refusing to submit to the chemical tests.

Lake Forest Woman Avoids Jail Sentence in DUI Case

June 2nd, 2012 at 9:21 am

According to the Naperville Sun, 39-year-old Karuna Talwar of Lake Forest has pleaded guilty to a charge of Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in the DuPage County Circuit Court. Talwar is the founder of Pay it Forward Foundation of Gurnee, IL, a local charitable foundation.

Talwar stopped her vehicle last winter on a busy street in downtown Naperville in order to exchange text messages with her husband. An officer who noticed her stopped car in the northbound lane of Washington Street approached Talwar’s vehicle and arrested her on DUI charges and other infractions, including operating a motor vehicle while using an electronic communications device.

In return for her guilty plea to DUI, the other infractions were dropped, and Talwar received a sentence of one year of supervision, $1,500 in fines and costs, Level 2 DUI monitoring, and mandatory attendance at a drunk driving victim impact panel. Her sentence included no jail time to be served.

Additionally, Talwar must comply with all terms and condition of supervision and monitoring for a year, or risk further penalties, which might include jail time. As you can see, a DUI conviction can result in serious penalties and high financial costs.

If you are accused of DUI, you face the possibility of significant fines, supervision, and even jail time. An experienced DUI lawyer is essential if you wish to have any chance of minimizing these consequences or of avoiding a conviction altogether. Contact your Cook County DUI criminal defense attorney now and get the information you need in order to put yourself in the best position possible with regarding to your pending DUI charges.

Back to Top Back to Top Back to Top