Felony Attorneys in Central Illinois
Aggressive Legal Representation for Felony Charges in Illinois
When charged with a felony offense, you need an attorney who will pull out all the stops to protect your best interests. Felonies carry much stricter penalties than misdemeanors, with high fines and a state prison sentence, instead of serving time in county jail. Even more severe, however, is having the felony conviction marked in your criminal record, which will show up in all background checks.
At Johnson Law Group, our dedicated felony lawyers in Central Illinois fight tirelessly to clear our clients’ names. Even if it’s not possible to completely dismiss all charges, it is often possible to have them reduced or even dropped down to a misdemeanor.
What Is a Felony?
A felony is a category of crime that is more serious than a misdemeanor and is typically associated with more severe penalties. Felonies are considered more significant offenses, and they are often characterized by the potential for imprisonment in a state or federal prison, substantial fines, and other legal consequences. The specific definition of a felony and the penalties associated with it can vary from one jurisdiction to another, but there are some common characteristics that help distinguish felonies from misdemeanors:
- Severity: Felonies are generally more serious and severe offenses compared to misdemeanors. They often involve acts that cause significant harm to individuals or society as a whole. Common felony offenses include murder, rape, arson, robbery, and certain drug trafficking offenses.
- Penalties: Felonies are associated with harsher penalties. These penalties can include imprisonment for a year or more in a state or federal prison, substantial fines, probation, parole, and other consequences that can have a long-term impact on an individual's life.
- Felony Conviction: A person convicted of a felony will have a felony conviction on their criminal record, which can have lasting consequences, including difficulty finding employment, housing, and various civil rights limitations, such as the right to vote or own firearms in some jurisdictions.
- Legal Process: Felonies often involve more complex legal processes, including grand jury indictments, more extensive pre-trial proceedings, and longer trials. The legal system affords individuals facing felony charges certain procedural protections due to the seriousness of the allegations.
- State vs. Federal: In the United States, there is a distinction between state and federal felonies. State felonies are prosecuted under state laws and result in state-level penalties, while federal felonies are prosecuted under federal laws and carry federal penalties, often involving crimes that cross state lines or have a federal interest.
It's important to note that the specific classification of crimes as misdemeanors or felonies, as well as the associated penalties, can vary from one jurisdiction to another. Different states and countries have their own criminal codes and sentencing guidelines. In some cases, an offense classified as a misdemeanor in one jurisdiction may be considered a felony in another.
Ultimately, felonies represent a more significant and serious class of crimes, and they are typically associated with substantial legal consequences. Individuals facing felony charges should seek legal counsel to navigate the legal process and protect their rights.
What are the Illinois Felony Classes?
Felonies are distinguished by different classes that depend on the severity of the crime and inform the severity of the punishment.
Classes of felonies in Illinois are as follows:
- Class 4 Felony – The lightest felony charge. Consequences include 1 to 3 years in prison and fines up to $25,000. Common examples of Class 4 felonies include criminal sexual abuse, identity theft, stalking, patronizing a prostitute, reckless discharge of a firearm, and obstructing justice.
- Class 3 Felony – Consequences include 2 to 5 years in prison and fines up to $25,000. Common examples of Class 3 felonies include involuntary manslaughter, aggravated battery, aggravated stalking, forgery, and perjury.
- Class 2 Felony – Consequences include 3 to 7 years in prison and fines up to $25,000. Common examples of Class 2 felonies include robbery, burglary, kidnapping, and aggravated domestic battery.
- Class 1 Felony – Consequences include 4 to 15 years in prison and fines up to $25,000 in prison. Common examples of Class 1 felonies include second-degree murder, aggravated discharge of a firearm, possession of child pornography, criminal sexual assault, residential burglary, and vehicular hijacking.
- Class X Felony – The most serious felony charge, usually reserved for violent and sexual crimes. Consequences include 6 to 30 years in prison. Common examples of Class X felonies include attempted murder, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated rape, aggravated sexual assault, aggravated arson, aggravated battery with a firearm, armed robbery, home invasion.
Regardless of the classification of felony, these consequences are serious and should not be taken lightly. We understand that this is a stressful time, but it is important to not give up. You are innocent until proven guilty and have a right to capable legal representation.
Why Do You Need a Felony Lawyer in Central IL?
Although it may seem intimidating to face a felony charge in central Illinois, having the right legal counsel on your side can make all the difference.
A specialized felony lawyer in central IL will be able to analyze any charges or evidence you are facing and determine the best strategy to minimize any potential consequences. A felony lawyer is also equipped with the experience and specific skills necessary to navigate the nuances of complex criminal proceedings as well as gain an in-depth understanding of central IL criminal law. No matter what your circumstances may be, having a reliable central IL felony lawyer on your side throughout this process is invaluable in ultimately achieving desired results.
The Central Illinois felony attorneys of Johnson Law Group have helped countless people fight these charges. Our team is known for its personal touch and strong record of outstanding outcomes. You do not have to go through this alone.
Request your free consultation today by calling our experienced felony attorney in Central Illinois at (309) 565-8825.
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