Illinois Criminal Arrest Procedures| Will County Criminal Defense Lawyer | Law Office of Jack L Zaremba

Criminal Arrest Procedures

will county arrest procedures

Criminal prosecution typically begins with an arrest. It is important to understand Illinois law regarding arrest procedures because if the authorities violate a defendant’s rights from the get-go, it could prejudice the state’s case. The following comes into play when a peace officer is allowed to make an arrest:

1. The officer has a warrant ordering that person’s arrest;
2. The officer has reasonable grounds to believe there is a warrant for that person’s arrest (issued in Illinois or in another jurisdiction); or
3. The officer has reasonable grounds to believe that the person is committing or has committed a criminal offense.

(Note that Illinois law requires the arresting officer to ask the arrestee if he has minor children at home. If so, the officer will assist the arrestee in finding someone to look after them.)

Anyone who watches television has probably heard the term “citizen’s arrest.” In Illinois, such an arrest may be performed by any person who has reasonable grounds to believe a criminal offense (other than an ordinance violation) is being committed.

Differentiating Between a Warrant, Summons and Notice

It is also important to distinguish between several legal terms of art that can be confusing: a “warrant of arrest,” a “summons” and a “notice to appear.” A warrant of arrest is a written court order directing a peace officer to arrest a specific person. However, that is not the only procedural mechanism for effectuating an arrest. For example, a summons is a written court order commanding a specific person to appear in court at a stated time and place. A court may issue a summons whenever it is authorized to issue a warrant of arrest. Similarly, a notice to appear is a written request (issued by a peace officer rather than a court) to appear in court at a stated time and place. The officer may issue a notice whenever he is authorized to make a warrantless arrest.

The court summons must:

• Be in writing;
• State the name and address (if known) of the person summoned;
• Explain the nature of the offense;
• Include an issuing date and municipality/county;
• Be signed by the judge (including his title); and
• Command the person to appear in court at a specified time and place.

The notice to appear must:

• Be in writing;
• State the name and address (if known) of the person;
• Explain the nature of the offense;
• Include the signature of the officer who issued the notice; and
• Request the person to appear in court at a specified time and place.

A court may issue a summons or a warrant of arrest if the person fails to appear.

Keep in mind that a warrant will not be quashed (and a person who is in custody for a criminal offense will not be discharged) due to technical irregularities in the warrant, unless the irregularities affect the substantial rights of the defendant.

The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects against unreasonable searches and seizures. This includes an unlawful arrest. If you have been arrested and suspect that your rights have been violated, contact one of our Will County criminal defense attorneys today. We can assist those in Frankfort, Joliet and the surrounding area.