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Dealing With Instances of Juvenile Retail Theft in IllinoisWhen it comes to teens and crime, there are certain types of crimes that are rather popular with teens, such as underage drinking and drug use. One of the more common crimes committed by those under the age of 18 is retail theft. According to the latest statistics from the FBI, there were more than 93,000 juveniles arrested in 2017 for committing theft or larceny. A juvenile is defined as someone who is under the age of 18, but the state of Illinois does not prosecute all juveniles the same. If a juvenile is at least 17, they can be prosecuted as an adult if the crime is serious enough. Juvenile court is different from adult court, but consequences for retail theft can be serious either way.

Consequences for Retail Theft 

In general, retail theft is a crime that occurs when a person intends to deprive a merchant of the benefit or retail value of their merchandise by:

  • Taking possession of it
  • Carrying it away
  • Transferring it from the store
  • Aiding someone in any of the previous actions. 

If the value of the stolen merchandise does not exceed $300, the crime is classified as a Class A misdemeanor which carries up to one year in jail, up to $2,500 in fines and up to two years of probation. If the merchandise exceeds $300, the charge is elevated to a Class 4 felony which carries one-to-three years in prison, up to $25,000 in fines and up to 30 months of probation.

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Dealing With the Fallout from a Probation Violation in IllinoisIf you have been convicted of a crime in Illinois, one of the more favorable outcomes is receiving a sentence of probation, rather than jail time or another sentence. Probation is almost like a second chance; it allows you to continue living in your home and going to work as usual, rather than being confined in jail. After your conviction, you will attend your sentencing hearing, which is where the judge will announce that you have been sentenced to probation. The judge will also decide what your probation requirements are, which can be things that you are prohibited from doing or things that you are required to do. Your probation is contingent on these terms, meaning you must follow them or you risk being incarcerated. If you violate the terms of your probation, a series of events will take place.

Receiving a Notice of Your Violation

There are a few ways you could be accused of violating the terms of your probation. If you were sentenced to unsupervised probation, you do not have a probation officer who is checking up on you, but you can still be arrested by police during your probation period. If you were sentenced to supervised probation, your probation officer will be monitoring you and can report when they believe you have violated the terms of your probation. Once a petition for violation of your probation has been filed with the court, you will receive a notice in the mail instructing you to attend your violation hearing. If you do not attend, a warrant will be issued for your arrest.

Attending Your Probation Violation Hearing

A hearing will be held to determine whether or not you truly did violate the terms of your probation. During this hearing, the state is tasked with the burden of proof, meaning you do not have to prove you are innocent of the violation. Rather, the state must prove that you are guilty by a preponderance of evidence, which means that the probability that you violated your probation must be higher than the probability of you not violating it.

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The Difference Between Assault and Battery in IllinoisAssault and battery are two terms that are commonly used as synonyms for one another in everyday conversation. In the legal world, assault and battery are two separate criminal offenses that have different definitions and carry different sets of punishments for committing them. In Illinois, assault and battery crimes are taken seriously and can be either a misdemeanor or felony charge, depending on the circumstances. Punishments can range from probation to prison time, which is why it is important to seek legal counsel if you have been charged with either crime.

Assault

In Illinois, assault is defined as any action that puts another person in “reasonable apprehension” of being physically hurt, Reasonable apprehension refers to the way the majority of people – or a reasonable person – would react to such actions. Basic assault is a Class C misdemeanor, which means you can face $75 to $1,500 in fines, up to 30 days in prison or up to two years of probation. Unless you are sentenced to jail time, you will also have to serve between 30 and 120 hours of community service.

Certain situations can also elevate assault charges to aggravated assault, which typically carries harsher punishments. An aggravated assault charge can be based on the location where the assault took place, the status of the person who was assaulted (such as a police officer) and whether or not a firearm or motor vehicle was used in the assault. Aggravated assault can be charged as a Class A misdemeanor to a Class 3 felony. This means you could face between one and five years in prison, fines between $75 and $25,000 and up to 30 months of probation.

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Alcohol and Minors: Never a Good Mix in IllinoisIt is not uncommon for teenagers to get in trouble with the law. When they do, the offenses they are known for committing are usually minor, yet serious offenses like theft, vandalism and traffic violations. One of the most common reasons teenagers get in trouble with the law is because of alcohol-related offenses. In all 50 states and the District of Columbia, you are required to be at least 21 years old to legally possess, purchase and/or consume alcohol. If you are caught drinking while under the age of 21, or if you are caught providing alcohol to someone under the age of 21, you could be facing serious fines and other consequences that could follow you for the rest of your life.

Possession or Consumption of Alcohol by a Person Under the Age of 21

In Illinois, consequences of underage drinking vary, but the person will likely be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. This means the person could face up to one year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines. Additionally, that person’s driving privileges will be affected. If they receive court supervision, their license will be suspended for three months. If they are convicted, their license will be suspended for six months.

Providing Alcohol to a Person Under the Age of 21

It is also illegal for a person who is able to purchase alcohol to provide alcohol to a person who is under the age of 21. Doing so can result in a Class A misdemeanor charge, which carries possible consequences of up to one year in jail and up to $2,500 in fines. This also includes providing alcohol to minors at a private residence under Illinois’ social host law. A minimum $500 fine will be imposed for a misdemeanor violation, with possible fines of up to $2,500. If death or serious bodily injury occurs, felony charges will be imposed, which can lead to up to three years in jail and up to $25,000 in fines.

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Exploring Charges and Penalties For Crimes Involving Fake IDs in Illinois For as long as government-issued identification cards have been around, fake IDs are sure to have also existed. Added security measures and other changes are constantly being made to ID cards in an effort to combat fraudulent or fake IDs, but that still does not stop some people from attempting to make them. Many times, crimes involving fake IDs are perpetrated by juveniles who are using the card for things such as purchasing alcohol. Some fake ID cards are nearly undetectable, but using one and getting caught can mean you will face quite a bit of trouble with the law.

Penalties for Crimes Involving Fake IDs

Illinois has strict laws and rather serious consequences when it comes to crimes involving fake IDs. Not only can you face criminal charges and penalties for the use, possession, manufacture and/or distribution of fake IDs, but you can also risk having your driving privileges taken away. The Secretary of State has the authority to suspend your driving privileges for up to one year or revoke your driving privileges for at least a year if you are caught violating laws concerning fake IDs.

You can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor if you are caught doing the following:

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