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McHenry and Elgin Criminal Defense Blog

Why should you care about the law if you are under 18?

You may not have always had an interest in the law. Many kids might consider legal matters to be unimportant. And if you are not yet a legal adult, you might think you do not have to truly take responsibility for your actions. However, that is not necessarily the case.

Perhaps you have never been in a situation where you had to think about how certain laws relate to you and why they should matter. However, if you were arrested or charged with a juvenile offense, is it extremely important to learn about the laws that apply to you.

5 tips for talking to the police

If you have to talk to the police, you want to know exactly how to proceed. On one hand, you want the conversation to go smoothly without escalating the situation. On the other hand, you know that you have rights, and you do not want the police to walk all over you.

Whether you've been pulled over, stopped on the street or approached at your home, here are five tips for talking to the officers:

How can you expunge or seal your criminal record in Illinois?

If you have a criminal record, you likely understand the obstacles you might face as a result. Depending on your circumstances, you may have already paid fines and restitution, served time and fulfilled community service requirements. But after meeting the terms of your sentencing, you could still face problems related to getting into college, making housing arrangements and finding employment offers.

In some circumstances, you can petition the court to get your records expunged or sealed, to clear your record altogether or limit access from the general public. However, you may not be familiar with the steps you will need to take to make that happen.

Duis And Blood Draws: How To Protect Your Privacy And Withdraw Consent

McHenry County is one of the recent counties that has implemented procedures for obtaining blood from the drivers of motor vehicles who are arrested for DUI when drivers' refuse to provide a breath sample. These procedures include obtaining warrants from judges who are on call around the clock. When a driver arrested for a DUI refuses to submit to a breathalyzer at the police station, an individual officer may try to obtain a warrant requiring the driver to submit to a legal blood draw to determine the driver's BAC.

Know your rights in a search and seizure

In some cases, a search and seizure in McHenry can lead to drug possession charges. But, if you are facing such charges, was the search and seizure legal? Did the law enforcement officers follow protocol when they were combing through your car? If the search and seizure was not legal, then you might be able to successfully fight back against possession charges that resulted from the police officers' illegal act.

The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution describes rules and exceptions that search and seizure protocols must follow and even a minor violation might be enough to help you win your case. Learn more about search and seizure rules so that you know your rights.

Do you have to tell the police if you have a firearm in the car?

You have a concealed carry license. Your criminal record is largely clean, you legally purchased your carry gun and you follow all of the related laws. You've been doing this for the last 10 years.

One day, on the way home from work, an officer pulls you over. He suspects that you may have been drinking or texting because you swerved over the center line. When he walks up to the window, do you have to tell him that you're carrying a gun?

The many ways an Illinois DUI can impact your life

Statistics nationwide tend to correlate an increase with blood alcohol content (BAC) and the potential for a serious motor vehicle crash. In order to reduce the rates of serious accidents that cause injury, death and property damage, states have created laws intended to regulate the use of alcohol before driving a motor vehicle. In Illinois, the name for impaired driving is driving under the influence (DUI), and DUI charges can carry harsh penalties.

The simplest way to avoid a DUI may be calling for a cab or using an app like Lyft to arrange for a sober driver to pick you up and take you home. Of course, there are also medical and social reasons why a person who isn't chemically impaired can end up charged with a DUI. Understanding the potential consequences of a DUI charge can determine how best to handle your situation

3 tips for avoiding a tipsy Halloween crash

Driving under the influence is against the law, but most people already know that. The problem that some people run into is not knowing that their holiday goodies contain more alcohol than they thought. With bowls of drinks mixed with vodka, rum and other alcohol, Halloween can become a dangerous holiday quickly.

It's important to know how much alcohol is in the drinks you're having. See a punch bowl from which you want to get a drink? Ask the host if it contains any alcohol and be aware that another guest could have slipped some in. Here are some tips for avoiding a tipsy drive on Halloween.

Pulled over? Here's what to do if you've been smoking marijuana

Imagine driving home from your friend's house. You've been smoking marijuana, which isn't legal yet in Illinois. While marijuana is legal in other places, the only thing that matters is your own state laws.

You didn't smoke enough to be driving under the influence, so when you were pulled over, you were surprised that the officer asked if you'd been smoking marijuana. What should you say? Would it be best to be honest?


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2400 Big Timber Road
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Elgin, IL 60123

Phone: 224-276-6641
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McHenry, IL 60050

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Sycamore, IL 60178

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