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b2ap3_thumbnail_shoplifting_20170428-021830_1.jpgShoplifting is one of those crimes in which anyone may have a proclivity. From a juvenile doing it to impress their friends to a single parent trying to provide for their family or even an elderly adult who mistakenly forgot the item at the bottom of the cart, shoplifting charges are not bound by age, race, or gender. Mainstream media has somewhat glorified the act by making it the subject of many Hollywood movies and song played on the radio, perhaps leading to an increase in shoplifting cases. However, the state of Illinois still believes stealing is not a victimless crime and anyone convicted of such allegations face harsh penalties. Fortunately, other alternatives are possible to conviction, given agreeable circumstances and utilizing the assistance of a proven attorney.

Traditional Consequences

Penalties accompanying shoplifting convictions depend primarily on the retail value of the item or items taken. The retail value is the cost at which the store sells the item, traditionally the full price regardless of a current sale or discount. If the item or items when added together amount to less than $300.00, the charge is a Class A misdemeanor, whereas over the $300.00 threshold is a Class 4 felony. If the offense occurred as a group effort, the total between all included parties determines the severity of the charges. Specifically, even if your portion of the theft amounted to the cost of a pack of gum, the charges also include the cost of the items taken by your alleged accomplices. Maximum penalties include:

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Illinois defense lawyer, Illinois criminal attorneyA background check is a compilation of various records within the past of a single individual or an organization, including criminal, financial, and commercial records. Employers utilize government agencies and private companies to dig up as much information about a potential employee during a pre-employment process. Companies implementing the extra precautionary measures reduce the risk of hiring a potentially dangerous individual to work in schools, hospitals, courthouses, and financial institutions where safety and security are paramount. These records show not only convictions but also arrests that did not result in a conviction, severely hindering even an innocent individual from finding gainful employment. As of 2017, new measures are in place to assist those interested in the expungement of their record.

Explaining Expungement

Even if someone was arrested but was found innocent or otherwise not convicted of the accusations, the arrest remains on the record for all interested parties to find. Illinois law grants that those who find themselves in such a position may file a petition with the court to have their records expunged. Qualifying arrests, felonies, and convictions have the right to request that the court destroys the records or seal them, so they are unable to be seen. Examples of crimes that may qualify for expungement include:

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Illinois sex crimes lawyer, Illinois defense attorneyAfter a conviction, any crime has the potential to be life-altering. Although, most crimes do not carry the additional stigma and other consequences as a conviction for sex crimes. Unfortunately, many sexually based crimes are based on false accusations, landing many innocent individuals on the sex offender registry for an extended period. It is imperative to protect yourself using proper legal representation to better your chances of avoiding the worst case scenario.

Is Registration Required?

Any crime involving sexual assault or that is sexually motivated faces judgment as a sex crime. Upon a charge of any of the vast number of sexual offenses, including rape or public indecency, an unfavorable result would require the necessity of publically registering as a sex offender. The case outcomes requiring automatic registration include:

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Posted on in DUI

Illinois drunk driving laws, Illinois defense attorneyA fatality can be a life-changing experience for any loved ones left behind. It is especially heart wrenching if the death was sudden and unexpected, such as in a traffic collision. It can be equally life-altering for those accused of causing the accident. If driving under the influence is the contributing factor found in the investigation, two sets of lives may be altered forever.

The Situation

After a long work week, you and your spouse decide to go out to dinner. You both order a glass of wine and begin catching up like old times. By the time dinner arrives, your wine is gone, and you decide to have another. With laughter, you accidentally spill some red wine on your white dress shirt. The sun has gone down, and it becomes evident that it is time to get home. However, on the way home, there is construction, and the lights are blindingly bright. You do not see the temporary lane shift on the highway, and you and an oncoming car collide. The accident results in severe injuries, and the other driver passes away as a result.

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Posted on in DUI

Illinois DUI attorney, Illinois defense attorneyYou probably had a realization at the moment you saw the police lights in the rearview mirror that a change was about to happen. Anxiety may have developed for the unknown and the uncontrollable as the officer approached your window. If you were drinking before you got behind the wheel of the vehicle, the stress perhaps was even greater. A DUI could change the course of your life not only because of the punishments involved but also because it becomes a matter of public knowledge until it is expunged or sealed.

There Are No Secrets Anymore

Gossip used to be the primary method anyone used to shovel up dirt on someone else. However, with the growth of social media and other informational resources, the information is available for anyone to discover without speaking to anyone or even leaving the house. Unless you are considered to be high profile, the information is not located on billboards or the nightly news, but the information is easily obtained. Several methods of learning about DUI arrest records are:

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Posted on in Traffic Violations

Illinois CDL rules, Illinois criminal defense attorneyWhen your income is dependent on your driver’s license, it is imperative that it remain up-to-date and valid at all times. When commercial driver's license (CDL) holding drivers see flashing lights behind them, they understand that it is not just a speeding ticket they may face, but the entirety of their career may be on the line. Therefore, it stands to reason that these drivers may be interested in a solution to dispute charges and keep their driving privileges. 

How to Earn a CDL Suspension

To know how to avoid penalties, you must first understand the various behaviors that can potentially be punishable by a suspension upon entering a guilty plea. These charges include:

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