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What Are Your Rights When You Have Been Arrested?With people around the world protesting police mistreatment of people of color, this is a good time to educate yourself about your rights if a police officer arrests you. By understanding your rights, you can avoid saying or doing something that could be used against you in a criminal case. There are rules that all officers in the U.S. must follow during an arrest to ensure that the arrestee’s constitutional rights are not being violated. Unfortunately, some police officers violate the rules, which can result in unlawful arrests or harm to the arrestee. Proving police misconduct during your arrest could lead to the charges against you being reduced or dismissed.

Miranda Warning

Leading up to and after your arrest, a police officer may ask you questions in hopes that you will provide information that can be evidence in a criminal case. It is in your best interest to not provide the officer with any information other than identifying yourself. After your arrest, the officer is required to read the Miranda warning to you before they ask more questions. The Miranda warning informs you that:

  • You have the right to remain silent
  • Statements you make to the police can be used as evidence against you
  • You have the right to request an attorney before speaking to the police
  • An attorney will be assigned to you if you cannot afford one

If no one reads your Miranda warning, any statements that you make in response to police questions after your arrest will be inadmissible as evidence in court.

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How Illinois Residents Can Be Charged With Resisting ArrestThere are some laws in Illinois that are meant to punish people who interfere with a police officer who is performing their job. One such criminal charge is resisting arrest, which is when a person knowingly obstructs an officer’s efforts to detain them. Resisting arrest is often an additional charge, on top of the charge for which the person was arrested. A conviction in Illinois will result in a minimum of 48 hours in jail and 100 hours of community service. It is possible to contest a resisting arrest charge, but the law’s broadness makes it difficult.

What Counts as Resistance?

The law does not specify the actions that meet the definition of resistance or obstruction. This allows police officers to interpret various behaviors as “resisting arrest,” such as:

  • Fleeing from an officer
  • Not responding to the officer’s orders
  • Struggling when the officer is putting handcuffs onto the suspect

The fact that the police officer is often the aggressor during arrests makes avoiding a resisting arrest charge more difficult for the arrestee. When a police officer suddenly grabs or tackles you, your natural reaction is to protect yourself. You may believe that you have the right to resist the arrest if you have done nothing wrong and the police officer has no reason to arrest you. Unfortunately, you can be convicted for resisting arrest when the arrest was unlawful as long as you knew that you were under arrest.

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What Are a Juvenile’s Rights After Being Arrested in Illinois?When a juvenile in Illinois is accused of committing a crime, they often face a different justice system than adults. The Illinois Juvenile Justice System calls juveniles “delinquent minors” instead of criminals. The juvenile court places greater importance on rehabilitating the juvenile than punishing them. It is easier to expunge a juvenile’s arrest and criminal records than it is for adults. Knowing all of this, your child is better off in a juvenile court than an adult criminal court if they are arrested. How does Illinois determine whether a case belongs in juvenile court? What are a juvenile’s rights during the arrest? These are important things to know if your child has been charged with a crime.

Juvenile Court Requirements

The age of the defendant and the nature of the criminal charge will decide whether a person is tried as a juvenile or an adult. In Illinois, a defendant is tried as a juvenile if:

  • They are 17 or younger and were charged with a misdemeanor
  • They are 16 or younger and were charged with a felony

Illinois will use the age the defendant was when they allegedly committed the offense, not their age at the time of the trial. Once a case has been heard in juvenile court, the court can continue jurisdiction over the case until the defendant is 21.

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By: Brian K. Stevens

Illinois DUI AttorneysFirst a caveat:  This article is not a “How To” of avoiding a DUI arrest.  If it is late at night and a police officer observes any traffic violation and then subsequently smells any amount of odor of alcohol, they will almost always find some reason to arrest the motorist for DUI. Therefore, the best that can be done on such a stop is to minimize the amount of evidence that you give to the police officer.  That way, once the matter is placed into the court system, an experienced DUI attorney can utilize the State’s evidence (or more importantly, lack thereof) to gain an advantage for his client, and many times, significantly reduce the penalties or even have the DUI case entirely dismissed. With those parameters in mind, here are the Top 10 Things To Do If You Are Stopped for a DUI:

  1. As soon as you see the squad car’s emergency lights activated, begin to pull your vehicle over

The longer the time you take to pull over, the more it can be argued that your reactions were slowed due to alcohol consumption. As soon as you see the police car’s overhead lights, gradually slow your car down, use your turn signal and begin to pull over to the side of the road.  If there is a parking lot in the immediate area, it is okay to turn into it to pull over, but do not drive more than one block to look for one.

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Can You Be Prosecuted for Violating a Quarantine?The Illinois Department of Public Health and local health boards have broad authority to order quarantines of people or locations in the interest of public safety. With the COVID-19 outbreak in Illinois, the IDPH may utilize this power to isolate or quarantine people who they reasonably suspect of carrying the virus. Many people will voluntarily comply with a request to quarantine themselves to help stop the spread of the virus. If you refuse to quarantine yourself, the IDPH can request a court order to quarantine you. If the order is granted, violating it would be a criminal offense.

Quarantine and Isolation

There are two orders that the IDPH can use to separate infected people from the public. A quarantine is used when people have potentially been exposed to a communicable disease and need to be separated until it is determined that they are not a risk to the public. Isolation is for people who are confirmed to have the disease or show symptoms of the disease.

The IDPH cannot enforce quarantine or isolation unless you consent or it receives a court order. For the court to approve a quarantine or isolation order, the IDPH must prove that:

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