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U.S. Supreme Court Rejects Illinois Concealed Carry Appeal

Illinois Conceal CarryThe state of Illinois has long been known for its strict laws regarding the ownership of firearms and other issues related to weapons. In fact, Illinois was the last state in the nation to even create a process for issuing concealed carry permits, doing so in 2012 only after a federal appeals court found that the state’s prohibition of concealed carry permits violated the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The issue has been back in the news in recent months as several Illinois gun owners have claimed the current process for obtaining a concealed carry permit violates their rights to due process.

Federal Appeals Court Rules Upholds Current System

Last spring, the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments regarding lawsuits filed by gun owners who believed the state’s laws regarding concealed carry permits violated their constitutional rights. The plaintiffs claimed that they met all of the qualifications to be issued a concealed carry permit under Illinois law, but their permits were not issued due to objections that had been lodged with one or more law enforcement agencies. When the applicants sought additional information, they were denied. They each filed lawsuits citing a deficiency in due process.

While their cases were pending, the state of Illinois recognized the problem of not informing an applicant regarding such an objection. A new set of regulations was drafted and adopted which directly addressed the plaintiff’s concerns. They continued with their lawsuits, however, instead of re-filing for a permit under the new guidelines. The Seventh Circuit Appeals Court determined that while the plaintiffs may have had a case under the original guidelines, the system for issuing concealed carry permits, as amended, does not violate an applicant’s right to due process.

No Further Action

Unsatisfied with the appellate court’s response, three of the plaintiffs sought to have their cases heard by the United States Supreme Court. This week , the Supreme Court determined without further comment that it would not hear the appeal. In declining the appeal, the high court will let the Seventh Circuit’s ruling on the matter be the final word.

Facing Weapons Charges?

It is against the law in Illinois to own or carry a weapon without the proper permits from the state. If you are facing criminal charges related to illegal weapons, the consequences could be severe. Contact an experienced Joliet criminal defense attorney to discuss your available options. Call 815-740-4025 for a free consultation at the Law Office of Jack L. Zaremba today.

DUI Charges and Delayed Intoxication

Joliet DUI LawyerIf you are not normally a drinker and recently went out with friends, you may have found yourself in an unfortunate circumstance—a delayed sense of intoxication that ultimately resulted in a DUI charge . What is this phenomenon, though, and why is it important?

What is Delayed Intoxication?

Delayed intoxication is exactly what the phrase implies: an individual who has consumed alcohol does not immediately feel the effects of the alcohol but later realizes they are more intoxicated than they initially though. Delayed intoxication could happen if your tolerance for alcohol has changed because of age or weight loss or due to other factors, such as how much food you ate before you started drinking. If you at home, a friend’s house, or an establishment when the alcohol catches up with you, it is unlikely to matter all that much. On the other hand, if you start to feel the effects while you are behind the wheel, you could be in for some trouble.

When Delayed Intoxication Leads to a DUI

It might sound like a made-up phenomenon, but delayed intoxication is a real thing. It can also result in some serious consequences, such as an accident and/or criminal charges for driving over the legal limit. So what if the latter happens? Is there anything that can be done, or should you just accept the consequences? You might be surprised to learn that this could potentially be used as your defense. Granted, every situation is different, which is why it is critical to ensure you have an experienced attorney assisting you with your case.

Give Up or Fight the Charges?

Fighting DUI charges might not seem like the responsible thing to do—especially if you did actually drive intoxicated. Yet, if you normally make very responsible choices and in this particular instance you suffered from delayed intoxication, you should not feel guilty for using a valid and real defense to combat the charges against you. Further, it is critical that you understand the consequences of not fighting back. In Illinois, you could lose your license for up to a year, and you may be required to use a monitoring device just to get to and from work or school in addition to expensive fines and possible imprisonment.

Do not let this happen to you. Contact an experienced Joliet DUI defense attorney and get the quality legal defense you deserve. We will fight for your rights and seek the most favorable outcome possible in your case. Call the Law Office of Jack L. Zaremba at 815-740-4025 for a free consultation today.

The Burden of Proof in a Criminal Case

Joliet Criminal LawyerWhen an individual has been charged with a crime, he or she is presumed to be innocent until he or she is proven guilty in a court of law. In a criminal case, the burden of proof is the highest in any area of the law, and justifiably so. Other areas of law deal primarily with concerns related to money and property, but a criminal defendant often faces serious punitive consequences, including, in some states, the death penalty. While capital punishment is no longer used in Illinois, a criminal conviction can still change a person’s life forever. The standard of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt looks to ensure that only the truly guilty are convicted and subsequently punished.

The Government’s Role

News stories and television programs often make reference to the idea that the victim of a crime can press charges against the alleged perpetrator. This, however, is only partially true. It is possible for a victim to file a police report and to cooperate in the prosecution of an alleged offender, but it is up to the government to decide whether or not to actually pursue a conviction. Depending on the nature of the offense, the prosecution may be handled by a United States Attorney in federal court or by the State’s Attorney’s office in the appropriate Illinois county.

If a prosecutor elects to file formal criminal charges against a suspect, the burden of proof is on the prosecution. This means that the attorneys for the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the offense for which he or she has been charged. Case law and jury instructions from around the country require the trier of fact—a judge or jury member—to acquit the defendant if there is any reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the crime. A defendant is not required to prove his or her innocence.

The Role of a Defense Attorney

Because the prosecution in a criminal matter has the burden of proof, why are defense attorneys so important—especially if the defendant is innocent? A defense attorney serves a number of purposes, but his or her most critical roles are to ensure that the rights of the defendant have not been compromised and that proper court procedures are followed at all times. To protect the rights of the defendant, a defense attorney will review police reports, arrest records, affidavits, and indictments, looking for any inconsistencies. A defense lawyer is also responsible for challenging arguments and evidence offered by the prosecution—particularly if the evidence is circumstantial but has been presented as indisputable fact.

Contact a Skilled Defense Attorney

A criminal case can be very complex, and you should not consider navigating it alone. If you are facing criminal charges, contact an experienced Joliet criminal defense attorney . As a former prosecutor, Attorney Jack L. Zaremba is equipped to help you fully understand your options and will work with you in making the best possible decisions. Call 815-740-4025 for a free consultation today.

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