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Local Officer Skips Arrest - Offers Kindness Instead

Illinois Violent Cities

When police officer Mario Valenti responded to an alleged trespassing call from a gym and fitness club in Skokie, he could have taken a hard line. Instead, upon encountering the alleged trespasser—a 15-year-old aspiring basketball player—Valenti opened his wallet and offered the boy an opportunity.

According to the Chicago Tribune and a number of other news outlets, the situation began a few months ago when X-Sport Fitness realized they had a problem with a teen showing up to play basketball without a membership. The gym’s operation manager said that the boy would find clever ways into the facility. “All of our entrances and exits are blocked,” the manager said. “And, sure enough, he would just show up on the basketball court.”

The boy was caught by staff members a few times and was told to leave. An unaccompanied minor without a membership is an insurance liability, and repeated incidents could potential constitute criminal trespassing. In August, the gym made good on its threats to call the police, and Officer Valenti responded.

Looking to Help

Upon arriving, Valenti asked the teen what was going on and discovered that the boy had a membership previously but his mother could no longer afford the costs. What Valenti did next took everyone by surprise. He reached into his pocket and offered the gym $150, asking how many months that amount would cover for the teen. The gym was inspired by the officer’s offer and covered the remaining cost for a two-year membership—more than a $700 value.

The teen recognized the kind gesture and thanked the officer. From Valenti’s perspective, the decision was an easy one. “I’d rather have him playing ball than being on the street and possibly getting into trouble,” he told news outlets. Plus, he said that most police officers got into their line of work to help people, despite what is constantly being shown on the news. With a simple act, he was able to change at least one young person’s view of the police, which made the whole thing worth it.

Protecting Your Rights

Unfortunately, not all interactions with the police have such happy endings. While the police may help when they can, they are sometimes forced to make difficult decisions that result in someone being arrested. If this has happened to you or a loved one, it is important to seek legal help right away. Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney in Will County to get the guidance you need. Call 815-740-4025 for a free consultation at the Law Office of Jack L. Zaremba today.

The Most Violent Cities in Illinois

Illinois Violent Cities

Every year, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) works in conjunction with state and local law enforcement departments to track and record the type and number of crimes committed within Illinois cities. It is important for residents, criminal defense professionals , police, and elected officials to understand this information so steps can be taken to address trends in the courts and on the streets.

Big or Small - Crime Does Not Discriminate

There are a couple of different ways to read the crime data to determine the amount and types of crimes being committed. These types of studies tend to focus on violent crimes (murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault) , and the size of a city’s population. Here is a summary of some important details of note from the most current statistics :

• It should be no surprise that Chicago experienced the highest number of violent crimes among all municipalities in Illinois in 2016. However, because of its large population, the number of violent crimes committed per 1,000 residents is on the low side.
• Among the large cities in Illinois (those with a population of 100,000 or more), Rockford was shown to have the highest rate of violent crimes committed, with nearly 17 incidents per 1,000 residents living in that city.
East St. Louis , however, with a population of approximately 26,600, reported 757 violent crimes committed in 2016. With an average of nearly 28 violent crimes committed per 1,000 residents, this southwest Illinois city is considered among the most dangerous in the state.
• Aurora, which has residents in both Kane and DuPage Counties, is Illinois’ second most populous city, yet averaged only 3 incidents of violent crimes per 1,000 residents last year.
• Champaign, home to the University of Illinois, reported 625 violent crimes committed in 2016. The University of Illinois, however, provides a separate and much more detailed report of crimes reported on its campus.
• While Chicago led the state in all crime categories, the FBI’s annual report showed a high number of property crimes, burglaries, and thefts occurring in Rockford, Springfield, and Peoria.

Trust Your Defense to a Knowledgeable Joliet Criminal Defense Attorney

A criminal conviction can impact your life in a number of ways. The best way to fight criminal charges is with the help of a knowledgeable attorney who understands the law. Rely on an Illinois criminal defense lawyer who uses every resource available to provide a vigorous and thorough defense on your behalf. The Law Office of Jack L. Zaremba possesses the knowledge and experience you need to avoid living with a conviction on your record.

Notorious Crimes Committed in Illinois

Notorious crimes illinois

Every year, studies are conducted during which Illinois prison inmates are interviewed and records reviewed to determine the most common types of crimes being committed across the state. This information provides a glimpse into the criminal justice system , as well as the people who make up the state’s inmate population.

A Notorious Top 10

While the current year’s numbers are not available, statistics from previous years indicate that not much changes over consecutive 12 month periods when it comes to the types of crimes that result in individuals living behind bars. Here is a brief summary of the ten most committed crimes in Illinois, according to the responses of those convicted:

10. Robbery - These crimes constitute the theft of a person’s property or money through the use of physical force or fear, and always include a victim who sustains a physical injury.

9. Driving Under the Influence - Those incarcerated for DUI tend to have committed repeat offenses that excluded them from a lesser sentence.

8. Residential Burglary - These crimes are marked by one’s unlawful entry into another’s home with the intent of committing a crime, not just theft, during the process.

7. Armed Robbery - Theft of a person’s property or money during which a weapon is used.

6. Burglary - Unauthorized entry into any building with the intent to commit any crime, not just theft.

5. Weapons - These charges typically refer to violations of the state’s licensing or ownership laws, but they can include other types of charges, as well.

4. Assault - This crime typically results when one person threatens or attempts to intimidate another, but not through physical force.

3. Sexual Assault - Commonly an assault or battery that includes a sexual component such as groping, rape, or another type of unwanted or offensive touching.

2. Controlled Substances Act - Crimes which violate a federal law regarding the manufacture and distribution of controlled substances, categorizing drugs from most harmful (Schedule 1) to least (Schedule 5).

1. Homicide - Commonly, the act of manslaughter or murder not committed in self defense, with varying degrees of severity.

Work with an Experienced Will County Criminal Defense Attorney

A criminal conviction can impact your life in a number of ways. The best way to fight criminal charges is with the help of a knowledgeable attorney who understands the law. Rely on a Joliet criminal defense attorney who uses every resource available to provide a vigorous and thorough defense on your behalf. The Law Office of Jack L. Zaremba possesses the knowledge and experience you need to avoid living with a conviction on your record.

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