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January 2016 Archives

Illinois man facing multiple criminal charges

According to authorities, a 19-year-old man was charged with drug possession in Glendale Heights on Jan. 21. Police had searched the man's home on the 2300 block of Century Point that morning and found items related to packing and selling drugs. They also found a gun, marijuana and money. Police say that the man was present at the time of the search.

The psychology of false confessions

Illinois residents may find it difficult to understand why people would ever confess their guilt to crimes that they did not commit. Media outlets frequently run stories about individuals who are proven innocent by new evidence and released from prison after spending decades behind bars, and many of these stories include details of confessions that were made willingly to law enforcement. A number of prominent psychologists have studied false confessions, and they say that they are often made due to emotional pressures and fears of the accused individual that are manipulated cleverly by the police officers involved.

Why representation is beneficial for first-time DUI offenders

Everyone makes mistakes. There is no exception to this rule. Even the most responsible and conscientious individuals make mistakes from time to time. Frustratingly, some mistakes that are surprisingly easy to make can result in devastating consequences. For example, it is startlingly easy to be arrested for drunk driving.

NTSB recommends lowering blood alcohol limit for drivers

Most drivers in Illinois are aware that the legal blood-alcohol limit is .08 percent throughout the country. On Jan. 13, the National Transportation Safety Board announced its recommendation to lower the legal blood-alcohol limit. The NTSB wants drivers to be considered legally drunk if they have a blood-alcohol limit of .05 percent, and perhaps even lower.

Involuntary intoxication as a legal defense

Illinois residents have likely seen countless films and television shows featuring characters who were acquitted in criminal trials due to temporary insanity, and they may wonder why intoxicated individuals rarely claim diminished capacity the reason for their actions. One factor is that such a strategy involves admitting guilt, and it could leave defense attorneys with few options if skeptical juries are unconvinced by these arguments. This type of strategy is also rare because the law only recognizes intoxication as a legitimate defense in very specific situations.

Treasurer charged with drug possession following traffic stop

On Jan. 3, the treasurer for a suburban village just outside of Chicago was taken into custody after authorities found heroin in his vehicle during a traffic stop. He was pulled over for a registration light that was not properly working, which is a minor traffic violation.

Despite decriminalization efforts, penalties still harsh for marijuana possession

As we discussed in a recent post, patients with certain medical conditions and a doctor's recommendation can register for medical marijuana through the Illinois Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program. State law allows a patient with a qualifying condition to possess up to 2.5 ounces of cannabis per 14-day period.

Medical Marijuana And DUI In Illinois: A Legal Gray Area

The Illinois Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act has made it legal for individuals with certain illnesses or medical conditions to legally use marijuana and to purchase it from state-sanctioned dispensaries. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, more than 3,000 people across the state have qualified to purchase and use medical marijuana.

Teens charged in connection with Dunkin Donuts armed robbery

Illinois police have reported that two men were taken into custody on Jan. 5 in connection with the armed robbery of a Chicago Ridge doughnut shop. One of the men is also thought to have been involved in an earlier armed robbery in the neighborhood. Bail for the men, who are both Chicago-area residents and are 18 and 19 years of age, was set by a Cook County judge on Jan. 7, and they are scheduled to appear in court again in Bridgeview on Feb. 3.

Woman charged with fatal DUI gets $1M bond

According to law enforcement authorities with the Illinois State Police, a 30-year-old woman is being held in custody in lieu of $1 million bond for her alleged role in a fatal DUI accident. The accident reportedly occurred around 7:20 p.m. on Dec. 26 in Lockport Township.

DUI charges dismissed for woman whose body makes alcohol

Chicago drivers may be interested to learn that a New York woman had DUI charges dropped after it became apparent that she had "auto-brewery syndrome." This syndrome, also called gut-fermentation syndrome, causes the person's digestive tract to convert common carbohydrates into ethanol. This extremely rare condition was first described in 1912 as "germ carbohydrate fermentation."