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29 01, 2016

What do I do if I am being investigated by the police?

By |January 29th, 2016|Criminal Defense|0 Comments

In the field of criminal law, I receive calls every week from people who have been contacted by the police whether it is in Chicago, Naperville, Schaumburg or anywhere in the Chicago area and surrounding counties.  All of these people want to know what they should do when being investigated by the police.  Do they ignore the police?  Should they go in and talk to the police?  What do you do when you get that call from a police department wanting you to come in and talk? This is not an easy answer.  Are you a witness?  If you refuse to speak with police does that make it look like you are guilty and can that be used against you in court?  Can you make yourself a target of a criminal investigation?  The safest thing to do is to contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer who you can talk to with attorney-client privilege.  This means that anything you say to the attorney cannot be used against you in court and is confidential. Criminal defense and DUI lawyer John W Callahan can speak with you about your case and advise you on whether or not you should speak with the police. [...]

27 01, 2016

Schaumburg DUI Arrest – What to do?

By |January 27th, 2016|DUI Defense|0 Comments

John W Callahan has represented people charged with DUI in the Schaumburg and surrounding towns for more than 19 years.  What should you do if you are arrested for a DUI in Schaumburg?  First, you must attack the statutory summary suspension.  What is the Statutory Summary Suspension?  When you are arrested for a DUI in Schaumburg or any town in Illinois, the Secretary of State of Illinois will try to suspend your driver's license for anywhere from 6 months to 3 years depending on whether or not it is your first or second offense. The most important thing to do when arrested for a DUI is to hire an experienced DUI defense lawyer to help you attack your suspension - this can prevent you from being suspended at all.  This needs to be done right away - as soon as the same day as the DUI arrest. Once the suspension issue is resolved you need to break down the police reports to determine if the DUI arrest can be invalidated.  This is what an experienced DUI lawyer can help you with.  A good DUI lawyer can often beat your criminal DUI charges in court if you refused a breathalyzer test. [...]

5 11, 2015

Justice reviews corporate prosecutions

By |November 5th, 2015|White Collar Crimes|0 Comments

Corporations are a legal person which, like individuals, may be prosecuted for crimes. However, individuals within that corporation may have committed crimes such as money laundering or fraud that pose criminal liability to the business because corporations act only through their employees and officers. Corporate governance and structure may nonetheless shield or insulate the individuals liable for these criminal acts. In September, the U.S. Department of Justice issued a memorandum announcing that it would hold individuals liable for corporate crimes. It also released the six steps that it would utilize to investigate and prosecute crimes, and to pursue civil enforcement actions. First, corporations must provide all relevant facts regarding the individuals responsible for the misconduct before it could qualify for any cooperation credit. Criminal and civil investigations undertaken by the DOJ should also focus on individuals commencing with the beginning of the investigation. DOJ investigations of individuals have to be proactive. Third, criminal and civil attorneys involved in corporate investigations should maintain routine communication with each other. The DOJ will not release culpable individuals from criminal or civil liability when resolving a case with a corporation unless there are extraordinary circumstances or approved departmental policy. Fifth, DOJ attorneys should not [...]

22 10, 2015

Ignition interlock devices not punishing enough?

By |October 22nd, 2015|Drunk Driving|0 Comments

One of the strangest elements of American criminal justice practice is that some policies or strategies are often minimized because they are viewed as not being sufficiently punitive. Take the problem of drunk driving. No one who studies the issue believes it to be a minor problem, but it is typically viewed as "crime and punishment" issue and not a public health issue. A researcher notes that ignition interlock devices (IID) can be very effective at deterring drunk driving. But it is often seen as part of the panoply of potential punishments applied to drivers convicted, like fines, alcohol counseling, license suspensions and jail time.   However, we know that jail and fines, while punitive, are not very effective at changing behavior. An ignition interlock device, on the other hand, is quite effective. It is essentially a breath-testing device that is installed in a vehicle and which requires the driver to provide a breath sample before starting the vehicle and subsequently during their trip. It can be effective because if it senses alcohol on a driver's breath, it will not start the vehicle or will shut down the vehicle and often call attention to the stop by blinking the vehicle's [...]

14 10, 2015

Woman charged with DUI may be sunk by Periscope

By |October 14th, 2015|Drunk Driving|0 Comments

Social media and cellphones have had a significant impact on many aspects of the legal system. The constant presence of cellphones and the ubiquity of Facebook lead many people to forget that they are creating a record of their activity for the entire world to see. In divorce cases, people often post pictures and make statements that detail elements of their life that can be embarrassing or compromising when presented in court. They may show vacations when they claim they have no money or the presence of their "dates" in their home with children, when such behavior is prohibited. We all know the danger of cellphone use and of texting while driving, and how that behavior has been tied to many crashes and collisions. We know how many cases of excessive force and police behavior have come under question when suspects and observers can provide cellphone video of events as they unfold, greatly diminishing the claim of authority that law enforcement has often relied upon to protect themselves from liability for their illegal actions. We have even seen viral videos on YouTube that purport to show how you can protect your constitutional rights and avoid speaking with the police at [...]

9 10, 2015

Selling pink Cub’s hats a felony?

By |October 9th, 2015|Felonies|0 Comments

Most people have heard of felony crimes, but many may not really know what distinguished a felony from a misdemeanor charge. The technical difference is simple. A felony is any charge where the potential sentence can exceed one year's time. So, a misdemeanor is by definition, are all crimes with sentences less than a year. The classification of a crime as either a felony or a misdemeanor is done by the legislature and many times, people may be surprised by the types of offenses that fall under a felony classification. Last week, a man was arrested for what may sound like a silly charge. He was selling counterfeit Chicago Cubs baseball caps. In this case, it was charged as a Class 3 felony, which could lead to a sentence of 2-5 years in jail.   The caps were pink and blue and one police officer had asked him to leave the Wrigley Field area after he came across his phony hats. However, within a few minutes, the suspect was found by Department of Homeland Security and private security officers from Major League Baseball, which may explain why he was arrested. Apparently, he has made selling counterfeit sports apparel into a [...]

3 10, 2015

Illinois some multiple-DUI drivers can regain license

By |October 3rd, 2015|Drunk Driving|0 Comments

Drunk driving presents a real problem. No one wants to be on the road with an intoxicated driver. Most likely, even drivers who are operating a vehicle while their blood alcohol content (BAC) is above Illinois' legal limit, were they sober, would be uncomfortable with their own driving. They probably know that many of those killed in alcohol-related crashes are the intoxicated drivers. At the same time, with very few exceptions in Illinois, if you cannot drive a motor vehicle, you will have great difficulty earning a living and maintaining a home. Like most of the nation, a car is essential to many basic functions of day-to-day life. When someone has been convicted of multiple DUIs, the frequent response of the legislature has been to increase the penalties imposed. And the primary penalty is lengthening the time in jail. While this solves the immediate problem of preventing the person from driving drunk, it does nothing, absent an effective alcohol or substance abuse treatment program, to address the underlying problem. And after their jail time, they need to be able to find a job, begin working or any of the other tasks that demand the use of a car. This may [...]

26 09, 2015

Sobriety checkpoints have a problem in Chicago, pt.2

By |September 26th, 2015|Drunk Driving|0 Comments

The use of sobriety checkpoints in Chicago has raised questions of racial bias, after an investigation by the Chicago Tribune found a disproportionate number of these checkpoints being conducted in minority areas of the city. Sobriety checkpoints were first authorized by the U.S. Supreme Court case, Michigan v. Sitz. In this case, the majority opinion employed a balancing test, which weighed the states interests in preventing drunk driving against the Fourth Amendment's protection from unreasonable searches.   The court found that the 25-second delay that the average driver experienced at such stop was "slight" when balanced against the state's interest in reducing the "slaughter on our highways" attributed to drunk driving. The Court of Appeals of Michigan had, in the underlying case, found the subjective intrusion unreasonable. The U.S. Supreme Court reversed stating the Michigan court had misread the Courts prior opinions. Ironically, after this case authorized sobriety checkpoints nationwide, the Michigan Supreme Court found them unreasonable under the state's constitution, so there are no sobriety checkpoints in that state. The Illinois Supreme Court authorized temporary roadblocks for DUI purposes in 1985, but the current use of sobriety checkpoints in Chicago is troubling because of their concentration in minority areas. [...]