Chicago Violent Crimes Attorney
Criminal charges involving violence are among the most aggressively pursued and harshly punished in Illinois. These offenses are almost always treated as felonies and are typically associated with using force or the threat of force against another person. While the mere accusation of committing a violent act can ruin relationships and tarnish your reputation, the full impact of a conviction can be devasting with a wide range of penalties including life-long imprisonment.
Due to their grievous nature, if you are charged with a violent crime in Illinois, there will be a tremendous amount of pressure on law enforcement to hold someone accountable. The police and prosecution won’t be interested in protecting you. In fact, they will likely use every available resource at their disposal to get a conviction. This makes it critical that you avoid making any statements before consulting an experienced Chicago violent crimes attorney who can properly advise you and will be equally aggressive in crafting your defense.
When the stakes are high, contact O’Meara Law, LLC at 312-909-0706 for a free and confidential consultation.
Violent Crimes & Penalties in Illinois
In Illinois, violent crimes come in various forms and with aggravating factors such as an offender’s previous criminal history, the nature of the offense, and how the victim was affected coming into play, the full weight of a conviction can be extreme. Some of the most common violent offenses include:
- Kidnapping – Knowingly and secretly confining another person and/or carrying them from one place to another against their will by force or the threat of force. Typically, a Class 2 felony punishable by between three to seven years in prison; however, when aggravating factors are present, the offense can be increased to a Class X felony, punishable by between six and 30 years in prison with an additional 15 to 25 years, depending on the severity of the incident.
- Robbery – The robbery statute in Illinois is very broad and covers the taking of any property from another by the use of force or the threat of force. Usually, robbery is considered a Class 2 Felony, carrying a penalty of between three and seven years in prison and a possible $25,000 fine. However, if there was a considerable amount of force used or any other aggravating factors, this can be escalated to a Class 1 felony with a four to 14-year sentence or even a Class X felony if a firearm was used in what’s called armed robbery. An armed robbery conviction can result in anywhere from six to 55 years or even life in prison.
- Manslaughter – Reckless homicide or involuntary manslaughter involves the unintentional killing of a human being by recklessly performing acts, likely to cause death or great bodily harm, and which do cause the death of an individual. Normally, a Class 3 felony (between two and five years in prison and up to a $25,000 fine), but when aggravating factors exist, the offense can be heightened to a Class 2 felony (three to seven years in prison and up to a $25,000 fine).
- Murder – As one of the most severe felony-level crimes in the state, murder is the unlawful and intentional killing of another person and depending on the condition and mindset of the alleged perpetrator, Illinois divides the offense into two categories: First Degree and Second Degree Murder. If convicted, the penalties will rely on any aggravating or mitigating elements involved but can result in substantial prison sentences, up to lifetime incarceration.
Protect Your Rights & Build A Strong Defense
The prospect of spending years, decades, or even the rest of your life behind bars is a terrifying thought. Even if you are released, when you combine the time in custody with the other collateral consequences and social stigma attached to a violent crimes conviction, there will likely be no area of your life left intact. Friends and family may turn their backs, and you will probably find it very hard to secure employment or a place to live once potential employer’s or landlords view your criminal history.
While your situation is serious, it is important to remember that with help from a highly skilled criminal defense attorney, you stand a much better chance of reaching a favorable result. A dedicated Chicago violent crimes lawyer can make sure the authorities respect your rights throughout the entire criminal process, from the initial investigation to police questioning, and a trial if necessary. Additionally, a capable attorney will review all of the evidence and present the strongest possible defense on your behalf. Maybe you were the victim of mistaken identity based on faulty witness testimony or you were forced to react with violence in self-defense.
With more than 20 years of legal experience, Chicago criminal defense lawyer Michael O’Meara has been in practice as a defense advocate for more than a decade and previously worked as a Cook County prosecutor. By utilizing his passion for justice and significant trial experience on both sides of the courtroom, attorney O’Meara has the knowledge and ability to fight tirelessly for each person he represents.
Contact a Chicago Violent Crimes Attorney Right Away
A lot is on the line if you are charged with a violent crime in Illinois, including strained relationships, ruined careers, and life-altering prison terms. At O’Meara Law, LLC we know how jarring these accusations are and will be there through the entire process. From the investigation, arrest, and trial, attorney O’Meara will offer honest and practical legal counsel as we defend your case and work towards the best possible outcome.
Let us help put this behind you. Call O’Meara Law, LLC at 312-909-0706 for a free and confidential consultation.