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According to Illinois law, a person can face assault charges if he or she takes part in an act that puts another person in danger of battery. Battery is defined as one person causing bodily harm to another person and making physical contact that is not authorized by another person. While the acts of assault and battery are alike, they are two separate violent crime charges in Illinois. A person can be charged with one or both of the charges, and they may face serious punishments as a result of these crimes.

How Does Aggravated Assault and Battery Differ from Simple Charges?

Aggravated charges of battery or assault result in more severe punishments, because the crime is considered worse than just a simple charge. According to Illinois law, aggravated battery is the act of causing bodily harm or permanent disfigurement to another person as a result of unwanted or confrontational physical contact. Someone can also be charged with aggravated battery or aggravated assault when:

  • The victim of the assault is a government employee, police officer, or firefighter.

  • The alleged assaulter uses flammable or caustic material to cause bodily disfigurement.

  • The victim of the assault is over 60 years old or has a physical disability.

  • The victim of the assault is a teacher or school employee, and the crime occurs on school property.

An act of simple battery is charged as a Class A misdemeanor. Most aggravated battery charges are Class 3 felonies, but a charge can be elevated to a Class 2 felony if the victim is over 60 years old, a peace officer, or the assaulter knowingly puts the victim in contact with blood, urine or other substances.

The charges can be further elevated to a Class 1 felony if the battery was intentional or is considered severe torture of the victim. Finally, the charges can be elevated to a Class X felony if a firearm is used during the battery. As a result of the conviction, a person can face up to 30 years of jail time. If any prior violations have occurred, a person can face up to 60 years in jail.

If someone is charged with a simple assault charge in Illinois, they will face a different punishment than a battery charge. Simple assault is a Class C misdemeanor and can be punishable with jail time of up to 30 days, a fine of up to $1,500, and/or up to 120 hours of community service.

Aggravated assault is a Class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by one year in prison and/or a $2,500 fine. If weapons were used in the assault, the alleged assaulter faces a Class 4 felony, which is punishable by a prison term of 1-3 years, a fine of $25,000, or both.

Defense Strategies for Assault Charges

If you have been charged with assault or battery, you may be able to defend against these charges by claiming that you acted in self defense or in defense of property and that your actions would not have happened if you had not already felt threatened. You may also be able to argue that you had received consent from the alleged victim to have physical contact with no intent to injure.

Contact a Joliet, IL Criminal Defense Attorney

The first step to defending against assault or battery charges is to find a reliable criminal defense lawyer. The experienced legal team at the Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C. is ready to hear your case and build a defense on your behalf. To set up a free consultation with a Will County violent crimes attorney, call 815-666-1285 today.





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Will County domestic violence defense lawyerA number of crimes fall under the blanket of domestic violence in Illinois law, including physical abuse, harassment and threats, and more. In order for charges to qualify as domestic violence, the crimes must have been committed against someone with whom the alleged perpetrator has a close relationship, like a spouse or former spouse, a parent or child, or a current or prior live-in partner.

If you have been charged with domestic violence, you need to get in touch with a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. You should not talk to police on your own. Instead, wait until you have proper legal representation before engaging in any conversation with law enforcement about the matter.

First Steps in Dealing with Domestic Violence Charges

The first move after being accused of domestic violence may seem obvious, but it is all too often ignored. Ideally, you should cut off communication with the alleged victim as much as possible. The situation is no doubt a tense one, whether you committed a violent act or not, so it is best to avoid any additional problems.

Do not spend too much time talking to police, at least not until you can have an attorney present. Be careful about volunteering too much information and seek experienced legal counsel right away. Once you have secured an attorney, follow his or her advice on how to proceed. Whether you did or did not commit an act that could be considered domestic violence, you will need help in making your side of the story known.

Domestic violence charges can come with some serious punishments. Even if the charges against you are false, dealing with the accusations can be a nerve-wracking experience, to say the least, and your reputation, career, and personal relationships can be affected. Keep in mind that the burden of proof is on the police and prosecution team. Many cases involving domestic violence charges boil down to one person's word against the other's.

It can help if you are able to gather character witnesses like friends, family members, and neighbors who are willing to vouch for you in court. If you have any evidence that can prove your innocence or help your case, let your attorney know as soon as possible.

A Skilled Attorney Can Help You Beat the Charges

Do not try to handle a domestic violence charge on your own. An experienced Will County domestic violence defense lawyer will be able to help you determine your best defense strategy. Call 815-666-1285 to set up a free consultation in which you can discuss your options for minimizing the legal and personal ramifications of domestic violence accusations.


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Joliet DUI defense lawyerWhile most drivers know that it is both illegal and potentially dangerous to drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they also tend to assume that only the guilty are convicted of such crimes. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. In fact, countless individuals – many of them registered medical marijuana patients – have been wrongly convicted of driving while under the influence of marijuana. Some of them remain imprisoned, still today. The following explains why and how and why this is happening, and it explains how an experienced criminal defense lawyer can help with your case.

Illinois' Marijuana Legal Limit

THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, stores itself in the fat cells of the body, which is why it can be detected in a person's blood and saliva far longer than other drugs. Prior to last year, this well-known fact was not considered in marijuana-related DUI cases. Instead, patients could be charged with a DUI, even if they only had a trace amount of THC in their system. Then the state finally implemented legal limits for THC (5ng in the blood and 10ng in saliva). Sadly, this change – although capable of reducing the number of wrongfully convicted medical marijuana patients – may still fall short of protecting every at-risk patient.

Faulty Science Being Used to Convict

The problem with marijuana DUIs in Illinois is not that the state is trying to reduce the number of crashes. Instead, it is the faulty science that law enforcement is using to convict individuals of drugged driving. Science shows that THC is not just stored in the body differently than another drug; the way it is metabolized is unique as well. THC leeches out of the body, slowly, over time, until the next use. Regular users (which is what most medical patients are) typically have a baseline of THC in their system. Depending on their body chemistry, THC levels may spike and then drop again shortly after use. Alternatively, they may decrease slowly, over time, even long after the intoxicating effects of the drug have worn off.

Fighting Your Marijuana DUI

Faulty science is just one of many defenses that can be used in a marijuana DUI case. Of course, one must have a great deal of knowledge and skill to effectively make this argument. As such, individuals are discouraged from trying to tackle marijuana DUI cases alone. Instead, remember that it is your license, right to use, and possibly even your livelihood on the line. Contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer and obtain the aggressive representation you deserve.

At the Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C., we aggressively pursue the most favorable outcome possible in every case. To learn more about how we can assist with your situation, schedule a personalized consultation with our Joliet marijuana DUI defense lawyers. Call our offices at 815-666-1285 today.


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disorderly conduct, Will County criminal defense attorneyNot all crimes that have serious consequences extending into multiple facets of a person's life need to be those of a violent or nefarious nature. In fact, seeming minor misdemeanor charges such as those for disorderly conduct and the like can have similar consequences, even if less far-reaching, that last for the rest of a person's life.

What Is Disorderly Conduct?

Defining disorderly conduct, however, can be tricky, as there are several factors that count toward such a charge, and many of them can be alarmingly subjective to pinpoint. Generally speaking, a disorderly conduct charge can be filed if a person is acting in a so-called "unreasonable manner," with the intention of disturbing another person or attempting to provoke a “breach of the peace.”

Common Examples

A person may also be charged with disorderly conduct if he or she cries wolf—that is, invokes the action of emergency response workers, such as firemen or police officers, without due cause. The stipulation of this, of course, is that the person knew that there was no reason for engaging with emergency response workers at the time of the call—if a person honestly believed that there was a fire, for example, or other emergency, he would not be charged with disorderly conduct. In some cases, proving that the person did have good reason to believe in the necessity of an emergency call would need to be done in court.

In the same vein, leading others to believe that there is cause for alarm or emergency evacuation, for example, is also considered reason for a disorderly conduct charge. That is, a person is not legally allowed to call “fire” in a movie theatre, or to falsely alarm others that a person has a bomb or a radioactive substance. This is particularly problematic when it comes to school property—if a person falsely alarms students and faculty to the presence of a bomb—or simply threatens that there will be violence, death, or bodily harm directed toward people at a school, he or she can be subject to a charge of disorderly conduct.

Protect Yourself and Your Rights

Again, however, charges of disorderly conduct are often so seemingly subjective that it can be possible to be charged for action that you did not even know was considered breaking the law. As such, if you are charged with disorderly conduct, it is imperative to seek legal counsel right away. A conviction can lead to be up to 30 days in jail, up to $1,500 in fines, and the mark of a Class C misdemeanor on your permanent record. Do not go through it alone. Contact our Will County criminal defense attorneys right away for information about free consultations.


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sex crime, Will County criminal defense lawyerUnlike those related to many other crimes, convictions for most sex crimes carry penalties that last far longer than a prison term, probation, and parole. If you are convicted of a sexual offense in Illinois you may be required to register as a sex offender for ten years, or even for the rest of your life.

Who Has to Register?

Illinois law, in most instances, does not give a judge much, if any, flexibility in deciding who should be required to register as a sex offender. The law mandates that judges impose registration as a part of a criminal sentencing. Crimes that include mandatory registration as a sex offender include:

  • Sexual assault;
  • Aggravated sexual assault;
  • Predatory criminal sexual assault;
  • Sexual abuse;
  • Aggravated sexual abuse; and
  • Child pornography crimes.

What Are the Consequences of Registration?

If you are required to register, you will not be allowed on the grounds of any school, or to live or loiter within 500 feet of any school. An exception may apply to these limitations if you have a child who attends that school and you are on school grounds for legitimate reasons, including conferences with teachers and administrators. You are also not permitted to be in public parks. These restrictions last as long as you are required to be on the sex offender registry. For many people on the registry this means their entire lives.

If your crime took place in 2010 or later, you are also banned from social networking sites while on probation, parole, or mandatory supervised release.

Mechanics of Registration

Every time you register, you will need to pay a $100 fee. If you are considered a sexual predator, you will have to register with the state every year. If you are considered sexually dangerous or sexually violent, you will have to register every 90 days.

You must register with the law enforcement agency that has jurisdiction over your residence. In most places, this means registering with your city's police department, or the county sheriff's office if you reside in an unincorporated area. If you move, you must notify law enforcement within three days.

Should you fail to register as required, or renew your registration, you can be charged with a Class 3 felony on the first occurrence and a Class 2 felony on any subsequent occurrence. As a result, you could face a prison sentence of between two and seven years.

Reliable Legal Guidance

If you have been charged with a sex crime, you need to speak with a skilled and knowledgeable Will County criminal defense attorney. Contact the Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C., today to discuss your case and to explore your available options. Call 815-666-1285 or 815-733-5350 for your free initial consultation.


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