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 ‘Rolling Meadows defense lawyer’ tag

Understanding Your Rights and Responsibilities During a Traffic Stop

March 28th, 2019 at 3:56 pm

Illinois traffic offenses, Illinois traffic stops, police search, Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney, searches and seizuresMany people do not have much interaction with the police. If they do, the chances are good that it is going to happen during a traffic stop. Even then, many people will only get pulled over two or three times while they are behind the wheel. When it happens, it is often very stressful. People imagine the worst as they sit in their car and watch the officer approaching.

In these cases, people are sometimes prepared to cooperate with the officer and do whatever they ask. These individuals do not understand that they have rights, and are not required to comply with everything an officer may request. Still, others may think they do not have to follow anything an officer instructs them to do at a traffic stop. These individuals may become belligerent or aggressive at a traffic stop.

So, what rights and responsibilities do people have when they are pulled over for a traffic stop?

Drivers Are Required to Pull Over

Any time a driver sees the flashing lights of a law enforcement vehicle, they must pull over as soon as it is safe to do so. In a few cases, a police officer may ask a driver to pull over, such as if the two vehicles are at a stop light, or if an officer walks up to the driver’s window while the vehicle is stopped. In either case, it is important that the driver complies with the officer’s request.

Under Section 11-204 of the Illinois Vehicle Code, failing to pull over for a police officer is considered fleeing the police, and it is illegal. Even if a driver simply takes too long to pull over, the officer may believe they are trying to evade the police. When this is the case, the driver will face penalties that are likely much more serious than the penalties they would face for the initial traffic violation.

Drivers Must Remain Calm

This is not written into Illinois law, but it can prevent the situation from escalating. When a driver can remain calm and speak politely to a police officer, it is less likely that the situation will develop into anything more. When drivers are aggressive and rude to police officers though, it could lead to further charges than they would have faced from the traffic stop alone. Police can misinterpret even small gestures such as the driver reaching for something in the vehicle. Due to this, it is always best if the driver keeps their hands visible and only gets out of the vehicle if the officer asks them to.

Drivers Are Not Required to Answer Questions

Drivers are required to provide a police officer with their driver’s license and registration if they are asked. However, they do not have to answer any questions the officer asks. The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution allows individuals to refrain from answering questions that may incriminate them in a crime. This includes traffic stops.

Officers often ask a lot of questions during a traffic stop. They may ask a driver if they knew how fast they were going, or if the driver knows why they were pulled over. It is often advised that even when a driver feels as though they have done nothing wrong that they refrain from answering these questions. Anything a driver says can be held against them later on.

Drivers Do Not Have to Consent to a Search

Just because a driver has been pulled over does not give police officers the right to search the vehicle. Drivers can refuse this search, although officers are also given quite a bit of leniency during traffic stops. If they have reason to believe there is evidence of a crime in the vehicle, they can perform their search without the driver’s consent. For example, if an officer noticed drug paraphernalia in the vehicle, they might search the vehicle.

In order to search a vehicle, police officers must have probable cause. Due to this, drivers can ask police what they are searching for, or what probable cause they have.

Did You Get Into Trouble at a Traffic Stop? Contact a Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense Lawyer that can Help

Traffic stops may seem minor, but they can quickly become a much more serious situation. When this is the case, drivers should contact a dedicated Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer for help. If you were pulled over and it led to serious charges or you feel as though you were treated unfairly, contact the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley at 847-394-3200 today. We understand you have rights that may have been violated, and we will help make to correct that situation, ensuring those rights are upheld. Do not try to handle your case on your own. Call now for your free consultation.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-204

Expunging a DUI Record

January 31st, 2019 at 7:12 pm

IL DUI lawyer, IL expungment attorneyOne of the worst penalties for mistakes made or wrongful convictions is that a person has a criminal record for the rest of their life. That criminal record can prevent them from obtaining employment, housing, and other opportunities such as post-secondary scholarships. Due to this, those with past convictions often wonder if there is any way to get their record cleared, and the mark on it erased. This is often the case with those convicted of a DUI. So, is there any way to get a DUI expunged or sealed in Rolling Meadows?

Expunging a DUI

According to the Criminal Identification Act, expunging a record is the act of physically destroying it. Instead of the records being destroyed, the records may simply be given to the person named within them. Their name may also be removed from official and public record with regard to a certain crime.

Under the law, expungement may be possible for certain arrests, court-ordered supervision, probation, and even some felonies. A DUI however, cannot be expunged from a person’s record, no matter what they were charged with or what the sentencing entailed.

Sealing a DUI

While expunging a record is essentially making it as though the record never existed in the first place, there is another option for anyone with marks on their criminal record. This is sealing their record, which is also outlined in the Criminal Identification Act.

When a record is sealed, any convictions or arrests remain on an individual’s record. However, that record is only available when it has been ordered by a judge. For example, while a landlord may not be able to view the record, a judge may be able to when the court would like to know if a person has any prior convictions.

When expunging a record is not an option, individuals often try to have their record sealed. Unfortunately, this is not an option for those with a DUI on their criminal record, either. DUI convictions in Illinois can also not be sealed.

How to Clear a Record of a DUI in Rolling Meadows

Unfortunately, there are only two ways to have a DUI cleared from a criminal record in Rolling Meadows. The first is if there were no charges filed. If the case is dismissed, or a person was arrested but the charges were dropped and the individual was never sentenced, the arrest and case can be cleared from a criminal record.

In the instance that an individual was convicted of a DUI, they only have one option. That is to ask the governor of Illinois for a pardon. This is rarely done, and pardons are even more rarely given. For this reason, it is critical that anyone facing a DUI charge speak to an attorney that can help. The best way to ensure a criminal record does not contain any DUI charges is to not get them in the first place.

A DUI Attorney in Rolling Meadows Can Help

It is important for anyone charged with a DUI to seek the help of a passionate Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer. An attorney can help individuals beat DUI charges, or get the charges reduced so that one day, they may be eligible to have the charge on their criminal record sealed or expunged. If you have been charged with a DUI in Rolling Meadows, contact the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley today at 847-394-3200 for your free consultation. A DUI conviction likely means that a person will not be given a second chance to have their criminal record cleared. Our attorneys can help individuals fight the charges in court and retain their freedom, both now and in the future. Contact us for a free consultation.

 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=350&ChapterID=5

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

Common Defenses to Drug Charges in Rolling Meadows

January 29th, 2019 at 7:02 pm

IL defense lawyerBeing charged with a drug crime, whether it is a simple possession charge or the more serious charge of drug trafficking, can have serious consequences. If convicted, a person may face high fines, jail time, loss of child custody, and loss of immigration rights. After a conviction, individuals also have a permanent criminal record that will follow them for the rest of their life.

While the situation may seem hopeless, it is not. There are several common defenses to drug charges, and a qualified attorney will use them to help anyone accused of committing a drug crime.

Entrapment

Due to numerous television shows and movies that have focused on entrapment, people are often unsure whether or not this can actually be used as a defense. In Illinois, it can. Entrapment occurs whenever a law enforcement officer, or other authority, incites or induces a person to commit a crime. However, if it can be proven that the person was going to commit the crime without any interference from the officer, this defense cannot be used.

For example, if a person sells drugs to an undercover police officer, that would not be considered entrapment. The person was likely to sell the drugs anyway and just happened to sell them to a police officer. That same person, however, may have prescription drugs in their possession that were prescribed to them. If an undercover officer repeatedly asked to buy the drugs and the person declined numerous times before finally giving them the drugs, that may be considered entrapment.

Informant Credibility

Police officers often rely on the public to solve crimes. They rely on eyewitness testimony and informants to provide them with the information they would to otherwise have. In some instances though, these informants are not always credible. An informant may have reason to turn over an innocent person to the authorities, such as in divorce proceedings or if the informant is simply acting out of revenge. When an informant is not credible, the information they are giving to the authorities is not considered credible either, and this can help build a solid defense.

Violation of Legal Rights

When someone is arrested for committing a crime, they have several legal rights. One of these is the right to a lawful search and seizure, as protected by the Fourth Amendment. When officers or other authorities violate this right, any evidence obtained through that search and seizure can be thrown out of court. The same is true for Miranda warnings, and many other rights those accused of committing a crime are entitled to.

Presence of Drugs

When an individual is arrested and charged with a drug crime, law enforcement officials must seize the drugs in question. If the prosecution cannot produce these drugs as evidence during trial, the charge will likely be dropped. In a case involving drug crimes, the presence of the actual drugs in question is one of the main pieces of evidence the prosecution has. Without it, there is often no case.

Addiction and Mental Health Issues

Substance abuse addictions and mental health issues are serious problems and are also often a part of many drug crimes case. When these issues are present, often those accused may be eligible for treatment rather than harsher penalties, such as being sentenced to jail. Some of these programs, such as court supervision, allow the accused to complete a program. Upon successful completion, the case is dismissed and a criminal conviction is avoided. That allows individuals to move on with their life without a criminal record following them throughout it.

A Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Provide a Proper Defense

It is one thing to know the possible defenses available in drug crime cases. It is another thing altogether though, to argue those defenses in court in order to get charges dropped or reduced. A passionate Rolling Meadows drug crimes lawyer though, can help those accused build and argue a strong defense. If you have been charged with a drug crime, call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley at 847-394-3200. Many people have addictions, were in the wrong place at the wrong time, or are completely innocent of a crime and have still been charged. A proper defense will show this, so you can move on with your life. Contact us today for your free consultation and we will start reviewing your case.

 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/072000050K7-12.htm

https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/fourth_amendment

Understanding Domestic Battery in Rolling Meadows

January 18th, 2019 at 10:16 pm

domestic -batteryPeople that live in the same house and are in close relationships sometimes fight and argue. Most often these arguments are vocal, with those involved saying things they did not mean before quickly forgiving each other. Sometimes though, these arguments turn into much more. When that happens, and an argument turns violent, it could result in a domestic battery charge.

It is natural for those charged with domestic battery to be confused about the charges. What exactly does a domestic battery charge involve? What penalties could a person be facing? Here domestic battery in Rolling Meadows is broken down, so anyone charged can understand what they are facing, and get the legal help they need.

The Legal Definition of Domestic Battery

Under Illinois statute 720 ILCS 5/12-3.2, domestic battery is defined as causing bodily harm to a person in the same household. Making physical contact with another person in the household can also be considered domestic battery if that contact can be considered provoking or insulting in nature.

The statute states that the individuals involved in a domestic battery case must be living in the same household. However, the Illinois Domestic Violence Act defines others that may be involved in a domestic battery case as well. These individuals include:

  • Spouses, including ex-spouses;
  • People in a romantic relationship or that were previously in a romantic relationship;
  • Parents and children, including stepparents and stepchildren;
  • Couples that have a child together;
  • Blood relatives to a child;
  • Current or former roommates; and
  • Adults and their caregiver.

Under this definition, a person can be accused of domestic battery if they engage in acts of physical violence with family members, those they live with, or those they have a close relationship with.

Penalties for Domestic Battery

Domestic battery is considered a Class A misdemeanor. If convicted, a person could be sentenced to up to one year in jail and a fine up to $2,500 for a first offense. Those with previous domestic battery convictions could be charged with a Class 4 felony. This could result in a fine of up to $25,000 and up to three years in jail.

The penalties for a domestic battery charge are severe. Even worse, a domestic battery conviction will remain on a person’s criminal record for the rest of their life. For these reasons, it is crucial that anyone charged with domestic battery understand the defenses that can be used.

Defenses for Domestic Battery

Self-defense is one of the most common defenses used in domestic battery cases. Sometimes arguments become very heated, and one person may try to strike, kick, or otherwise physically injure someone. When this is the case, and the person being injured used reasonable force to defend themselves, it may not be considered domestic battery.

In other cases, a person falsely accuses another person of domestic battery. People sometimes feel resentful or revengeful after a dispute and so, they accuse a person of domestic battery when it simply did not happen. In the best of these instances, a person will often decide to not pursue charges. If the police have already been involved though, that may not be a possibility.

Contact a Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense Lawyer

Domestic battery charges should always be taken very seriously. Being convicted of this crime can result in jail time, high fines, and a permanent criminal record.

If you have been charged with domestic battery, contact the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley at 847-394-3200 and speak to a skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney today. An attorney will review your case, help prepare your defense, and make sure your rights are upheld in court. Call us today for your free consultation.

 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K12-3.2

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs5.asp?ActID=2100

License Revocation at Discretion of the Court

November 28th, 2018 at 2:35 pm

IDMost moving violations do not end up with the driver being sentenced to a license revocation. In fact, even when serious bodily injury has occurred, the driver is typically allowed to drive that very same day so long as they are not seriously injured. However, in some circumstances, a court may revoke a driver’s license without a hearing, as per Illinois statute 625 ILCS 5/6-206 Discretionary authority to suspend or revoke license or permit; right to a hearing.

If a driver’s behavior falls under one of 48 different categories, they may lose their license immediately, and without a hearing, if the court believes that is the best course of action to keep other road users safe. These specific behaviors and actions include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • The driver committed an offense that requires license or permit revocation upon conviction;
  • The driver has been convicted of three or more moving traffic violations in any 12 month period;
  • The driver has repeatedly been involved in motor vehicle collisions, or has repeatedly been convicted of traffic offenses to a degree that indicates lack of ability to exercise ordinary and reasonable care, or disrespect for traffic laws and the safety of other people;
  • While driving illegally, the driver caused bodily injury to another road user;
  • The driver utilized a fake driver’s license;
  • The driver refused to submit to an examination or failed an examination under Section 620-7;
  • The driver used false statements or submitted false facts in order to gain a driver’s license;
  • The driver possessed, displayed, or attempted to display a driver’s license that was not their own;
  • The driver operated a motor vehicle on a state highway with an invalid driver’s license;
  • The driver fled the scene of a crash in which $1,000 or more in property damage occurred;
  • The driver, while driving, was found to be possessing an illegal controlled substance on their person or in their vehicle; and
  • The driver refused to submit to a breath test or their blood alcohol content was found to be 0.08 or higher while driving a motor vehicle.

At Least Seven Million People Across the Country Have Lost Their License Due to Debt

Statistics show that at least seven million Americans have had their licenses revoked or suspended simply because they failed to pay their traffic fine debts. The total number is likely much higher than seven million, and here in Illinois a driver’s license can be revoked for repeatedly getting traffic citations to the “degree that indicates . . . disrespect for the traffic laws. Opponents of these types of laws believe that they overly penalize the poor—those who cannot afford to pay their parking and speeding tickets.

Call a Rolling Meadows License Revocation Attorney

If your driver’s license has been revoked or suspended, or you are facing another moving violation that will put you over the top in terms of points on your license, you need to call a Cook County criminal defense lawyer. Call skilled Cook County criminal defense attorney Christopher M. Cosley today at 847-394-3200 for a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/more-than-7-million-people-may-have-lost-drivers-licenses-because-of-traffic-debt/2018/05/19/97678c08-5785-11e8-b656-a5f8c2a9295d_story.html?utm_term=.b3c9b1b08b8a

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K6-206

Interfering with the Reporting of Instances of Illinois Domestic Violence

April 4th, 2016 at 8:21 am

Illinois domestic violence, Rolling Meadows Defense LawyerSometimes domestic situations get out of hand. One person in a relationship or family situation, often a male, might lose his temper or act out angrily at his partner, ex, or family member. The other party, often a woman, is the alleged victim, and she might feel threatened, fearful, or vindictive and could over-react to the situation. She might want to call the police and report the incident as an instance of domestic violence.

Calling the police for a domestic violence situation is a serious matter, since the cops are most likely leaving the scene with someone in custody, usually the alleged abuser. Many people know this and do not want to be arrested. Threats made by the alleged victim to call the police can prompt the alleged abuser to interfere with the victim making the call to the authorities. The alleged abuser might:

  • Try to physically prevent the victim from placing a call to the police;
  • Threaten the victim further;
  • Break, destroy, or disable the phone;
  • Attempt to make it difficult for the victim to speak to the police on the phone;
  • Attempt to make it difficult for the police to hear the victim on the phone; and/or
  • Try to prevent the victim from telling the police something if the police arrive at the scene.

Any of the above examples are attempts to interfere with the reporting of domestic violence, which is prohibited by law under 720 ILCS 5/12-3.5. If you are facing domestic violence allegations, and allegations that you interfered with the reporting of domestic violence, you need to speak with an experienced Illinois criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. You face serious charges, and a lawyer can help you defend yourself and your rights.

Interfering with the Reporting of Domestic Violence

Specifically, the statute on interfering with the reporting of domestic violence prohibits a person from preventing, or attempting to prevent a victim or a witness from reporting an instance of domestic violence. It can also be considered interfering with the reporting of domestic violence if a person prevents a victim from getting the medical attention or care that he 0r she needs after an instance of domestic violence. The resulting criminal charges are a Class A misdemeanor.  

Charges of interfering with the reporting of domestic violence are often accompanied by domestic violence charges, such as domestic battery, aggravated domestic battery, and violation of a protection order. Defendants are often charged with both, but sometimes one or both of the charges can be dropped if the facts do not support a conviction.

Let Us Assist You Today

When you are facing domestic violence charges, or charges for interfering with the reporting of domestic violence, there is a lot at stake and you need to consult with an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Please contact a passionate Rolling Meadows defense lawyer at our firm immediately. Our skilled advocates are prepared to help you today.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=1876&ChapterID=53&SeqStart=21100000&SeqEnd=23000000

Back to Top Back to Top Back to Top