Law Offices of Tedone and Morton, P.C.

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815-666-1285

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815-733-5350

Plainfield, IL criminal defense attorney drug possession

Few substances have been more hotly debated than marijuana or cannabis. Some believe that this plant-derived drug offers substantial medicinal benefits while others consider it to be a dangerous gateway drug. The laws governing the manufacture, sale, and consumption of marijuana are constantly changing. As of January 2020, the possession and use of recreational or medical marijuana are legal in Illinois for residents over age 21. However, Illinois residents are still subject to many marijuana-related restrictions. Violating these restrictions can lead to serious drug charges.   

Possession of More Than 30 Grams May Be a Misdemeanor or Felony Offense

Adults 21 and older are permitted to possess up to 30 grams or just over one ounce of marijuana flower and up to 5 grams of concentrated marijuana. Visitors to Illinois may possess half of these amounts. Many Illinois residents do not realize that although recreational marijuana is now legal in Illinois, there are still many ways in which the substance can lead to criminal charges.

Possession of 30 – 100 grams of marijuana is a misdemeanor offense punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of $2,500. If an individual is caught with more than 30 grams of marijuana a second time, the offense is a felony punishable by up to three years of imprisonment and a maximum fine of $25,000. Possession of 100-500 grams of cannabis is also a felony offense punishable by up to $25,000 in fines and three years in prison. The greater the amount of marijuana possessed, the harsher the punishments. Possession of more than 5,000 grams or the sale or trafficking of large amounts of cannabis is punishable by upward of a decade in prison.

Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana

THC-containing products such as cannabis flower or cannabis-infused foods have been found to significantly worsen a user’s balance, coordination, and reaction time. Memory problems and impaired judgment are also common side effects of cannabis use. Consequently, it is unlawful to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of cannabis. If a police officer suspects a driver of being under the influence of marijuana, he or she may ask the driver to complete a field sobriety test. Once the driver is arrested, he or she may be asked to submit to chemical testing of his or her urine, breath, or blood. If the driver has more than 5 nanograms of THC in his or her system, he or she may be charged with driving under the influence (DUI).

Contact a Joliet, IL Drug Crimes Defense Lawyer

If you or a loved one were charged with a criminal offense related to marijuana, do not take these charges lightly. Although the drug has been legalized in Illinois, there are still many ways that the possession, use, manufacture, or sale of the drug can lead to criminal consequences. Contact one of the highly skilled Plainfield, IL criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Tedone & Morton, P.C. for help building a strong defense against marijuana charges. Schedule your free, confidential initial consultation by calling our Joliet office at 815-666-1285 or our Plainfield office today at 815-733-5350.

 

Sources:
https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/articles/where-is-marijuana-legal-a-guide-to-marijuana-legalization
https://www.healthline.com/health/addiction/marijuana/effects-on-body
https://www.illinoispolicy.org/what-you-need-to-know-about-marijuana-legalization-in-illinois/

Plainfield, IL criminal defense attorney drug possession

Attitudes about drugs have changed dramatically in the last several decades. Illinois’ recent decision to legalize the recreational use of marijuana is one of the best examples of this. However, the possession, consumption, transportation, or manufacture of certain substances is still strictly illegal. If you or a loved one has been arrested and charged with drug possession, the penalties can be severe. That is why it is imperative that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you build a robust defense against these serious charges.

Unlawful Search and Seizure

The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution gives us the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. It also establishes the need for search warrants. One of the ways that this important right is applied is through the “exclusionary rule.” This rule prevents any evidence obtained in violation of a criminal defendant’s rights from being used against him or her during a criminal proceeding. If the illicit substances allegedly found in your possession were discovered during an unlawful search, this evidence may be inadmissible.

Typically, police cannot search a person’s home without first obtaining a valid search warrant from a judge. However, there are exceptions to this rule. If evidence is in plain view, someone in the home is in immediate danger, or someone living in the home gave police permission to search, they may not need a search warrant. Law enforcement does not need a search warrant to search a vehicle; however, they do need “probable cause.” This means that there must be some indication of criminal activity or illegal contraband in the vehicle. Your lawyer can help you determine if you were the victim of an unlawful search and seizure.

Arguing the Ownership or Identity of the Drug

To obtain a conviction for drug possession in Illinois, the prosecution must prove that:

  • The substance was in fact an illicit drug.

  • The drug was in your possession.

  • You knowingly possessed the drug.

Your attorney may argue each of these facts depending on the circumstances of your case. One of the hardest elements to prove in a drug possession case is that the defendant knowingly possessed the substance. If a passenger in your vehicle hid drugs under the seat of your vehicle during a traffic stop, for example, you may not have known that the drugs were in your car.

Contact a Plainfield, IL Drug Crimes Defense Lawyer

If you or a loved one was arrested and charged with drug possession, contact the Law Offices of Tedone & Morton, P.C. right away. You have a Constitutional right to remain silent. Do not let police question you without your attorney present. Call our office today at 815-666-1285 to schedule a free, confidential consultation with our skilled Will County criminal defense attorneys.

 

Source:

https://constitution.congress.gov/constitution/amendment-4/

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Plainfield, IL drug trafficking defense attorney

There is still over one month until recreational marijuana becomes legal in the state of Illinois. Even when the new year comes around, "hard drugs" including cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamines will still be illegal. It is unlawful for a person to possess, manufacture, sell, and traffic drugs in the state of Illinois, and offenders can face serious criminal charges if they are caught. That is why it is important to understand the new legislation for cannabis and how it could affect you. 

What Is Drug Trafficking?

The act of bringing any illegal substance across Illinois borders is considered “trafficking.” Whether it is marijuana or a more harmful drug, traffickers can face felony charges, which can result in jail time and hefty fines.

Under current laws, possession of less than 10 grams of marijuana is not considered a felony, but offenders can still expect to face misdemeanor punishments of up to one year in prison and up to $2,500 in fines. Illinois law sentences offenders to more severe penalties depending on the amount of drugs found in a legal search and seizure:

  • 10-30 grams of marijuana can result in 1-3 years in jail and fines of up to $25,000

  • 30-500 grams of marijuana can result in 2-5 years in jail and fines of up to $50,000

  • 500-2,000 grams of marijuana can result in 3-7 years in jail and fines of up to $100,000

  • 2,000-5,000 grams of marijuana can result in 4-15 years in jail and fines of up to $150,000

  • Over 5,000 grams of marijuana can result in 6-30 years in jail and fines of up to $200,000

Penalties for possessing stronger drugs such as cocaine, methamphetamines, LSD, or heroin will face even harsher punishments than for possession of marijuana:

  • Less than 15 grams can result in 4-15 years in jail and fines of up to $250,000

  • 15-100 grams can result in 6-30 years in jail and fines of up to $500,000

  • 100-400 grams can result in 9-40 years in jail and fines of up to $500,000

  • 400-900 grams can result in 12-50 years in jail and fines of up to $500,000

  • Over 900 grams can result in 15-60 years in jail and fines of up to $500,000

In regards to marijuana, if a trafficker is caught bringing more than 2,500 grams of the drug across Illinois state lines, he or she can face a mandatory double sentence of the minimum penalty for possessing the drug.

What About After the First of the Year?

In 2020, hard drugs will still be illegal, and the law will still make possessing large amounts of marijuana illegal. Those who wish to use marijuana after it becomes legal may only legally purchase it at one of the licensed dispensaries and may not possess more than 30 grams of the cannabis flower, five grams of cannabis concentrate, or 500 milligrams of cannabis-infused edibles.

The state of Illinois will also give licenses to employees who will transport the drugs to and from the dispensaries. It will still be against the law to traffic marijuana into Illinois with the intent to sell it outside of a licensed dispensary.

Contact a Joliet, IL Criminal Defense Attorney

Being caught with any amount of drugs while crossing into a state that has strict drug rules can change a person’s life forever. A large amount of drugs can lead to a trafficker being sent to prison for a long time. The lawyers of Tedone & Morton, P.C. can help build a solid defense strategy based on the legality of the search and seizure performed, violations of your rights, or other circumstances surrounding your case. If your rights were compromised by the authorities, our Will County drug crimes lawyers will find out. To schedule your free consultation, call our office today at 815-666-1285.

 

Sources:

https://norml.org/laws/item/illinois-penalties

https://www.iwu.edu/counseling/Illinois_Drug_Laws.htm 

https://www.illinoispolicy.org/what-you-need-to-know-about-marijuana-legalization-in-illinois/

 

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Plainfield, IL drug charges defense lawyer

Illegal drug possession and use have climbed rapidly throughout the United States in recent years. The use of opioids has become more prevalent, and these drugs were responsible for 68 percent of fatal overdoses in 2017. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, approximately 47,600 people died in 2017 due to an opioid drug overdose. It is important to understand Illinois laws regarding the possession of illegal drugs in the event you are faced with such charges, even if you were simply a witness to an overdose and called for help. 

Who Is to Blame For Overdose Deaths?

In Illinois, a person who sold the drugs that led to a fatal overdose can be prosecuted for drug-induced homicide. However, Illinois is also one of 40 states in the United States that upholds the Good Samaritan Law, which protects both the victim of the overdose and the person who calls the police for help from facing charges.

The Good Samaritan Law was established to encourage people to call the police for help if they see someone who is overdosing on drugs. In many cases, people hesitate because they do not want to get into trouble, but this law ensures the callers will not be charged unless:

  • They are in possession of more than three grams of heroin.

  • They are in possession of more than three grams of morphine.

  • They are in possession of more than 40 grams of prescription opioids.

  • They are in possession of other illegal drugs of various amounts.

If the above circumstances apply, the person(s) in possession of the drugs will face felony charges.

What Are the Punishments for Drug Possession?

The state of Illinois has specific rules and punishments depending on the type of drug and the amount of the drug that is found in an offender’s possession. Possession of cocaine, heroin, morphine, methamphetamines, and LSD is a felony charge, regardless of the amount of drugs found. The punishments increase in severity when more drugs are found:

  • 15-100 grams: fines of up to $200,000 and a prison term of 4-15 years.

  • 100-400 grams: fines of up to $200,000 and a prison term of 6-30 years.

  • 400-900 grams: fines of up to $200,000 and a prison term of 8-40 years.

  • Over 900 grams: fines of up to $200,000 and a prison term of 10-50 years.

If a person is caught selling these drugs, he or she will face even more fines--up to $500,000-- and a prison term of up to 60 years, depending on the amount sold.

Contact a Joliet, IL Criminal Defense Attorney

Under certain circumstances, the Good Samaritan Law can protect those individuals who may be in possession of drugs, but if a fatality occurs from an overdose, a police investigation could lead to serious criminal charges and penalties. If you are facing drug possession charges, hire a lawyer from the Law Offices of Tedone & Morton P.C. to make sure your rights are not compromised during an investigation. To schedule a free consultation with a Will County drug charge defense lawyer, call 815-666-1285 today.

 

Sources:

https://www.iwu.edu/counseling/Illinois_Drug_Laws.htm

http://www.dph.illinois.gov/opioids/overdose 

https://sbtreatment.com/overdose/

https://www.drugabuse.gov/related-topics/trends-statistics/overdose-death-rates

Plainfield drug crimes attorney

At the end of May, it was announced that Illinois lawmakers passed a bill that would legalize recreational marijuana use in Illinois. However, the law will not change until January 1, 2020. So the short answer is: Yes, recreational marijuana is still illegal in Illinois for now.

Possession of marijuana (as well as using, selling, and trafficking) is still punishable as a drug crime in Illinois for the rest of 2019. If someone is caught with marijuana, the punishment severity increases with the amount of the drug:

  • Possession of 10-30 grams of marijuana is a Class A misdemeanor for first offenses punishable by one year in prison and a fine of up to $2,500. A subsequent charge is considered a Class 4 felony punishable by one to six years in jail and a fine of $25,000.

  • Possession of 30-500 grams of marijuana is a Class 4 felony for first offenses punishable by one to six years in jail and a fine of $25,000. A subsequent charge is considered a Class 2 felony punishable by two to five years in jail and a $25,000 fine.

  • Possession of 500-2,000 grams of marijuana is a Class 3 felony punishable by 2-10 years in prison and a fine of $25,000.

  • Possession of 2,000-5,000 grams of marijuana is a Class 2 felony punishable by 3-14 years in prison and a fine of $25,000.

  • Possession of over 5,000 grams of marijuana is a Class 1 felony punishable by 4-30 years in prison and a fine of $25,000.

Medical marijuana is the only type of weed that is legal in Illinois until 2020, and a doctor’s recommendation must prove that it is medically necessary for the person in possession of it.

What Is the Plan for 2020?

According to a report printed by the Chicago Tribune, Illinois will have 55 recreational marijuana dispensaries across the state for people over the age of 21 to purchase the drug. Additionally, those dispensaries will have the right to open a second location for the sale of marijuana. All told, Illinois could have over 100 locations for people to purchase marijuana.

Another report from Channel 5 in Chicago detailed that Illinois residents would be limited to possessing up to 30 grams of marijuana at a time. The report went on to say that only people who use marijuana for medical purposes may grow the cannabis plants in their home, so long as it is out of the public eye.

The new bill will also benefit anyone who was convicted in the past for possessing less than 30 grams of marijuana. Those persons may be able to have their drug crime history erased through the governor’s clemency process.

Contact a Joliet, IL Drug Crimes Lawyer

While Illinois has passed a law to legalize marijuana, it will not go into effect until January 2020. This means there are still several months left in which recreational marijuana is still illegal in Illinois. If you or someone you know is being charged with possession of marijuana, the attorneys at the Law Office of Tedone & Morton, P.C. can help build a defense strategy and work to avoid any negative outcomes. To schedule a free consultation with a Will County criminal defense lawyer, call 815-666-1285. 

Sources:

https://norml.org/laws/item/illinois-penalties

https://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-where-to-buy-marijuana-in-illinois-20190603-story.html

https://www.nbcchicago.com/blogs/ward-room/legal-weed-pot-marijuana-illinois-things-to-know-510678831.html?fbclid=IwAR3brtIGmjElzN5AYLhC9W2R4ygxQk_4leiEnfBKEdrflZEUHYX38TANTNY

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