Over the last two weeks, our blog has been discussing how the crime of robbing a bank -- so often overlooked in the popular press and so often glamorized by Hollywood -- is viewed in the eyes of the law. Specifically, we've focused on how it's defined and why it's treated as a strictly federal crime.
Last week, our blog began discussing bank robbery, a crime that seems to generate little news coverage owing to the frequency with which it is perpetrated, and has long been glamorized in popular films and television shows. We also explored how this reality sometimes causes people to view it as a viable option if they've fallen on hard times, meaning they believe that the risk is worth is worth it, as the stakes are relatively low in the event they are apprehended.
Bank robbery is a crime that you often see covered briefly covered and pay little attention to given that it seems to occur so often, seldom involves physical harm and fits the definition of the so-called "victimless crime."
As any resident of the Chicagoland area is all too aware, the rate of gun violence in the city has reached truly staggering levels, leaving everyone from lawmakers to law enforcement officials desperately looking for answers.
Last week, our blog examined some of the specifics of the Back the Blue Act, which, if passed, would establish a new federal crime prohibiting the assault of federal judges, federal law enforcement officers and "federally funded public safety officers."
Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) made headlines last week by introducing a measure known as the Back the Blue Act, which, among other things, calls for the creation of a new federal crime -- complete with mandatory minimum sentences -- addressing the assault of law enforcement officials.
Nearly two decades ago, Congress passed a rather significant amendment to the Gun Control Act known as the Lautenberg Amendment, which expressly forbids anyone convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor from either purchasing or owning a firearm.
As in the rest of the country, in Chicago criminal defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. This is meant to be a high standard of proof that is supposed to avoid convictions based on ambiguous or dubious evidence.
In addition to the changes to the juvenile justice system that we discussed earlier this month, a handful of changes to Illinois' criminal code took effect on Jan. 1. It may take some time to see the effects of some of the changes, as they address more behind-the-scenes operations (for example, more and improved police training). Other changes, however, will have an immediate effect on how suspects are treated, how crimes are prosecuted and the penalties for certain crimes.
When a person is accused of committing a robbery here in Illinois, one thing that can matter considerably in their case is whether or not they are accused of having had a gun or other dangerous weapon on them during the alleged robbery. This is because being accused of committing a robbery while armed with a gun or other dangerous weapon can lead to a person facing armed robbery charges rather than traditional robbery charges.