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Archive for the ‘solicitation’ tag

New Program Treats Prostitutes as Victims Instead of Criminals

June 17th, 2015 at 7:41 am

Illinois sex crimes lawyer, Illinois defense attorney, Illinois criminal lawyer,Prostitution is a crime that has been handled and mishandled many ways by society over the years. During some eras it has been ignored, in other eras it has been harshly prosecuted, and in some parts of the country it has even been legalized. It is still against the law in Illinois and the people engaging in prostitution often find themselves in need of the assistance of a criminal defense attorney. Now, however, Cook County has created a new program that will treat the people engaged in prostitution, who are all too often not prostitutes of their own volition, as the victims they are, rather than treating them as criminals.

A New Cook County Program

The Chicago Tribune reports that a new court will change the way prostitution charges are handled in Cook County. This program was in part made possible by a 2013 change in the state prostitution law that required that all prostitution cases be charged as misdemeanors rather than felonies. The court will be called the “Chicago Prostitution and Trafficking Intervention Court.” Its goals are to give people working in prostitution the tools they need to leave that life while at the same time reducing the overcrowding of local jails.

Program Acknowledges Realities of Prostitution

While some people, both men and women, consciously choose to work in prostitution despite having other readily accessible options in their lives, that is simply not the case for many sex workers. Some are the victims of human traffickers, while others are trapped by issues involving substance abuse, homelessness, and/or mental health problems. These women and men often find themselves forced into sex work just to survive. This new program is designed to help solve these underlying problems rather than just punishing people for doing what they have to do in order to get by. One of the key elements of the program is that the defendants who are a part of it will actually be able to get their charges dismissed if they successfully complete the program. It remains to be seen, however, how realistic completion of the program will be. Drug courts have shown that when they are properly implemented they can be an excellent tool for rehabilitation, but when they are not run properly they can just be a way of setting defendants up to fail. Hopefully this court will be more like the former than the latter.

What Will the Program Include?

The men and women who engage in this program will have individual case managers. They will have access to HIV testing, and, if necessary, treatment. They will receive counseling. Depending on the participant’s individual needs they may also work with organizations that fight homelessness, that deal with human trafficking issues, and that provide mental health services.

Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley

If you are charged with prostitution, or any other crime, you will need the help of an experienced and passionate criminal defense lawyer. For help from a skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney, you should call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley. When you call us at (847)394-3200 we will schedule an appointment at your convenience.

The Crime of Solicitation in Illinois

February 26th, 2015 at 7:39 am

Illinois criminal defense attorney, Illinois defense lawyer, criminal intent,We have all heard the expression “don’t do the crime if you don’t want to do the time.” But in Illinois, as in most states, there are ways you can wind up doing the time even if you yourself were not the one to do the crime. These are known as inchoate offenses, and they include offenses such as attempt and solicitation. One of the interesting things about Illinois law is that not only do we have laws against attempt and solicitation, but here it is also illegal to attempt to solicit.

What are Attempt and Solicitation?

Both attempt and solicitation are defined by Illinois statutes. One is guilty of solicitation when he or she, with the intent that a criminal offense be committed, commands, encourages, or requests that another person commit the criminal offense. A person commits “attempt” when he or she, with the intent to commit a specific crime, takes a substantial step toward committing that crime. Thus if you ask or pay someone else to commit a crime for you, that is solicitation. If instead you take a substantial step toward committing the crime yourself, then attempt is what you are guilty of doing.

Another related type of inchoate offense is conspiracy. A person is guilty of conspiracy if, with the intent that a crime be committed, he or she agrees with at least one other person to the commission of the crime. In order to be convicted of conspiracy, one of the co-conspirators must take at least one act in furtherance of the conspiracy.

What is Attempted Solicitation?

The statutes do not specifically mention attempted solicitation, but under Illinois law attempted solicitation is a crime. This is what happens when one, with the intent that a crime be committed, takes a substantial step towards encouraging, commanding, or requesting that another person commit a crime. This crime exists because attempt can, in general, be applied to any crime so long as doing so does not create some sort of inherent impossibility or the specific crime in question has its own specific attempt language within the defining statute. An example of attempted solicitation would be where an incarcerated person tries to send a letter to someone on the outside asking him or her to commit a crime. After the incarcerated person tries to send the letter a prison employee charged with reading the mail reads it, reports it, and does not allow it to actually go out in the mail. There the incarcerated person took the substantial step toward requesting that the outsider commit a crime, so attempted solicitation occurred.

Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley

If you are facing criminal charges you need the help of an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney. You should call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley. We will fight for you. Call us today at (847)394-3200.

Solicitation and a Sting in the Suburbs

January 14th, 2015 at 5:21 pm

Illinois defense attorney, Illinois criminal lawyer, prostitution, When we think of undercover police work we often think of narcotics cases. Police go undercover to buy or sell drugs and catch people who do the same. But this is certainly not the only area where police work under cover. Sex crimes like prostitution and solicitation also provide undercover work for police and lead to arrests in the suburban area. If you have been arrested for a sex crime in the Rolling Meadows area, it is in your best interests to contact an attorney immediately.

A Sting in the Suburbs

The Chicago Sun Times reports that 14 men were recently arrested after meeting police officers in an undercover solicitation sting in the west suburbs. Undercover police officers placed ads for prostitution services on an adult classifieds website called Backpage.com. The men then allegedly went to a hotel to meet with the advertised prostitutes only to instead find undercover cops. In 2014, more than 130 men were arrested by Cook County Sheriff’s officers using this Backpage sting method. The unit has arrested around 700 people using this method since 2009. The men caught in this sting were charged with a violating a local Cook County public morals nuisance ordinance.

Solicitation Laws in Illinois

The public morals ordinance applied to these men has been around for a few years. It decriminalized being a john in a sense, in that it removed jail time from the picture. However, being punished under this ordinance can result in substantial fines, community service, and even the impounding of vehicles. These fines may be substantially greater than the punishments that were actually doled out back when these cases were prosecuted in criminal court. The upside, though, aside from no risk of jail time, is that prosecution under this ordinance does not result in an actual criminal conviction. This ordinance only applies in certain parts of Cook County.

State criminal law also addresses solicitation of a prostitute. The crime is called “solicitation of a sexual act.” Under the law, any person who offers someone money or anything of value to perform any act of sexual penetration or touching or fondling of the sex organs commits solicitation of a sexual act. This is a Class A misdemeanor normally, but if the prostitute is a minor or is severely or profoundly intellectually disabled it becomes a felony. Class A misdemeanors can be punished by up to a year in jail. The fine can be anything up to $2,500 per count.

Criminal Defense Attorney

When you or someone you love is charged with a crime, you need the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Contact the dedicated Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley and we will schedule a free consultation.

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