The Varying Meanings of Sexual Misconduct

Because of the onslaught trend and frenzy of allegations related to “sexual misconduct,” it is very easy to misconstrue and confuse the meanings of individual instances of allegations. “Sexual Misconduct” is more of an umbrella term relating to variety of types of allegations. “Sexual Misconduct” for example does not always mean an accuser is a victim of an actual physical sexual assault by the accused. This post is to provide the public with a clear definitional understanding of different instances of allegations that flow from the umbrella term of “sexual misconduct.”

CIVIL

Definitions of Civil Actions Related to “Sexual Misconduct” in Illinois and On the Federal Level

ILLINOIS

Illinois Human Rights Act

According to the Illinois Human Rights Act, sexual harassment is defined as:
Any unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors or any conduct of a sexual nature when:

1. Submission to such conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term or condition of an individual’s employment;
2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting such individual; or 3. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment

The Illinois Human Rights Act also identifies other conduct which may constitute sexual harassment that includes:

• Verbal: Sexual innuendos, suggestive comments, insults, humor, and jokes about sex, anatomy or gender-specific traits, sexual propositions, threats, repeated requests for dates, or statements about other employees, even outside of their presence, of a sexual nature.
• Non-Verbal: Suggestive or insulting sounds (whistling), leering, obscene gestures, sexually suggestive bodily gestures, “catcalls”, “smacking” or “kissing” noises.
• Visual: Posters, signs, pin-ups or slogans of a sexual nature, viewing pornographic material or websites.
• Physical: Touching, unwelcome hugging or kissing, pinching, brushing the body, any coerced sexual act, or actual assault.
• Textual/Electronic: “Sexting” (electronically sending messages with sexual content, including pictures and video), the use of sexually explicit language, harassment, cyber stalking and threats via all forms of electronic communication (e-mail, text/picture/video messages, intranet/on-line postings, blogs, instant messages and social network websites like Facebook and Twitter).

FEDERAL

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

The EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) defines sexual harassment as a form of sex discrimination that violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII applies to employers with 15 or more employees, including state and local governments. It also applies to employment agencies and to labor organizations, as well as to the federal government.

Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitute sexual harassment when this conduct explicitly or implicitly affects an individual’s employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.

Sexual harassment can occur in a variety of circumstances, including but not limited to the following:

• The victim as well as the harasser may be a woman or a man. The victim does not have to be of the opposite sex.
• The harasser can be the victim’s supervisor, an agent of the employer, a supervisor in another area, a co-worker, or a non-employee.
• The victim does not have to be the person harassed but could be anyone affected by the offensive conduct.
• Unlawful sexual harassment may occur without economic injury to or discharge of the victim.
• The harasser’s conduct must be unwelcome.

Under Title VII there are two recognized types of sexual harassment:

1) Quid Pro Quo
Quid pro quo sexual harassment occurs when tangible employment benefits are conditioned on one’s compliance with a harasser’s sexual demands. Brill v. Lante Corp., 119 F.3d 1266, 1274 (7th Cir. 1997); Bryson v. Chicago State University, 96 F.3d 912, 915 (7th Cir. 1996)
Section 1604.11 of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission guidelines explicitly describes such conduct:
Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitute sexual harassment when (1) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or impliedly a term or condition of an individual’s employment, [or] submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting such individual. 29 C.F.R. §1604.11(a).

2) Hostile Work Environment
A plaintiff who alleges a hostile work environment in violation of Title VII must demonstrate that (a) the unwelcome conduct was of a sexual nature, (b) the conduct was directed at the plaintiff because of his or her sex, (c) the conduct was severe or pervasive enough to create a hostile work environment, and (d) there is a basis for employer liability. Roby v. CWI, Inc., 579 F.3d 779, 784 (7th Cir. 2009).

CRIMINAL

Definitions of Crimes related to “Sexual Misconduct” in Illinois:

(720 ILCS 5/11-1.40) Predatory criminal sexual assault of a child.
(a) A person commits predatory criminal sexual assault of a child if that person is 17 years of age or older, and commits an act of contact, however slight, between the sex organ or anus of one person and the part of the body of another for the purpose of sexual gratification or arousal of the victim or the accused, or an act of sexual penetration, and the victim is under 13 years of age.

(720 ILCS 5/11-1.20) Criminal sexual assault.
(a) A person commits criminal sexual assault if that person commits an act of sexual penetration and:

(1) uses force or threat of force;
(2) knows that the victim is unable to understand the nature of the act or is unable to give knowing consent;
(3) is a family member of the victim, and the victim is under 18 years of age; or
(4) is 17 years of age or over and holds a position of trust, authority, or supervision in relation to the victim, and the victim is at least 13 years of age but under 18 years of age.

(720 ILCS 5/11-1.30) Aggravated Criminal Sexual Assault.

(a) A person commits aggravated criminal sexual assault if that person commits criminal sexual assault and any of the following aggravating circumstances exist during the commission of the offense or, for purposes of paragraph (7), occur as part of the same course of conduct as the commission of the offense:

(1) the person displays, threatens to use, or uses a dangerous weapon, other than a firearm, or any other object fashioned or used in a manner that leads the victim, under the circumstances, reasonably to believe that the object is a dangerous weapon;
(2) the person causes bodily harm to the victim, except as provided in paragraph (10);
(3) the person acts in a manner that threatens or endangers the life of the victim or any other person;
(4) the person commits the criminal sexual assault during the course of committing or attempting to commit any other felony;
(5) the victim is 60 years of age or older;
(6) the victim is a person with a physical disability;
(7) the person delivers (by injection, inhalation, ingestion, transfer of possession, or any other means) any controlled substance to the victim without the victim’s consent or by threat or deception for other than medical purposes;
(8) the person is armed with a firearm;
(9) the person personally discharges a firearm during the commission of the offense; or
(10) the person personally discharges a firearm during the commission of the offense, and that discharge proximately causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, permanent disfigurement, or death to another person.

(720 ILCS 5/11-1.60) Aggravated criminal sexual abuse.

(a) A person commits aggravated criminal sexual abuse if that person commits criminal sexual abuse and any of the following aggravating circumstances exist (i) during the commission of the offense or (ii) for purposes of paragraph (7), as part of the same course of conduct as the commission of the offense:

(1) the person displays, threatens to use, or uses a dangerous weapon or any other object fashioned or used in a manner that leads the victim, under the circumstances, reasonably to believe that the object is a dangerous weapon;
(2) the person causes bodily harm to the victim;
(3) the victim is 60 years of age or older;
(4) the victim is a person with a physical disability;
(5) the person acts in a manner that threatens or endangers the life of the victim or any other person;
(6) the person commits the criminal sexual abuse during the course of committing or attempting to commit any other felony; or
(7) the person delivers (by injection, inhalation, ingestion, transfer of possession, or any other means) any controlled substance to the victim for other than medical purposes without the victim’s consent or by threat or deception.
(b) A person commits aggravated criminal sexual abuse if that person commits an act of sexual conduct with a victim who is under 18 years of age and the person is a family member.
(c) A person commits aggravated criminal sexual abuse if:
(1) that person is 17 years of age or over and: (i) commits an act of sexual conduct with a victim who is under 13 years of age; or (ii) commits an act of sexual conduct with a victim who is at least 13 years of age but under 17 years of age and the person uses force or threat of force to commit the act; or
(2) that person is under 17 years of age and: (i) commits an act of sexual conduct with a victim who is under 9 years of age; or (ii) commits an act of sexual conduct with a victim who is at least 9 years of age but under 17 years of age and the person uses force or threat of force to commit the act.
(d) A person commits aggravated criminal sexual abuse if that person commits an act of sexual penetration or sexual conduct with a victim who is at least 13 years of age but under 17 years of age and the person is at least 5 years older than the victim.
(e) A person commits aggravated criminal sexual abuse if that person commits an act of sexual conduct with a victim who is a person with a severe or profound intellectual disability.
(f) A person commits aggravated criminal sexual abuse if that person commits an act of sexual conduct with a victim who is at least 13 years of age but under 18 years of age and the person is 17 years of age or over and holds a position of trust, authority, or supervision in relation to the victim.

(720 ILCS 5/11-1.50) Criminal sexual abuse.

(a) A person commits criminal sexual abuse if that person:
(1) commits an act of sexual conduct by the use of force or threat of force; or
(2) commits an act of sexual conduct and knows that the victim is unable to understand the nature of the act or is unable to give knowing consent.
(b) A person commits criminal sexual abuse if that person is under 17 years of age and commits an act of sexual penetration or sexual conduct with a victim who is at least 9 years of age but under 17 years of age.
(b) A person commits criminal sexual abuse if that person commits an act of sexual penetration or sexual conduct with a victim who is at least 13 years of age but under 17 years of age and the person is less than 5 years older than the victim.

(720 ILCS 5/11-6) Indecent solicitation of a child.

(a) A person of the age of 17 years and upwards commits indecent solicitation of a child if the person, with the intent that the offense of aggravated criminal sexual assault, criminal sexual assault, predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, or aggravated criminal sexual abuse be committed, knowingly solicits a child or one whom he or she believes to be a child to perform an act of sexual penetration or sexual conduct as defined in Section 11-0.1 of this Code.
(a-5) A person of the age of 17 years and upwards commits indecent solicitation of a child if the person knowingly discusses an act of sexual conduct or sexual penetration with a child or with one whom he or she believes to be a child by means of the Internet with the intent that the offense of aggravated criminal sexual assault, predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, or aggravated criminal sexual abuse be committed.

(720 ILCS 5/11-25) Grooming.

(a) A person commits grooming when he or she knowingly uses a computer on-line service, Internet service, local bulletin board service, or any other device capable of electronic data storage or transmission to seduce, solicit, lure, or entice, or attempt to seduce, solicit, lure, or entice, a child, a child’s guardian, or another person believed by the person to be a child or a child’s guardian, to commit any sex offense as defined in Section 2 of the Sex Offender Registration Act, to distribute photographs depicting the sex organs of the child, or to otherwise engage in any unlawful sexual conduct with a child or with another person believed by the person to be a child.

(720 ILCS 5/11-9.1) Sexual exploitation of a child.

(a) A person commits sexual exploitation of a child if in the presence or virtual presence, or both, of a child and with knowledge that a child or one whom he or she believes to be a child would view his or her acts, that person:
(1) engages in a sexual act; or
(2) exposes his or her sex organs, anus or breast for the purpose of sexual arousal or gratification of such person or the child or one whom he or she believes to be a child.
(a-5) A person commits sexual exploitation of a child who knowingly entices, coerces, or persuades a child to remove the child’s clothing for the purpose of sexual arousal or gratification of the person or the child, or both.

As the onslaught of allegations continue to permeate the media, it is important that public is aware of the varying definitions and aspects of the term “sexual misconduct” as it is easy to misconstrue what this term truly means. If you or someone you know has been charged or accused of sexual misconduct, it is imperative that contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you navigate through these complex issues. Contact Wigell Criminal Defense to speak to an experienced attorney to discuss your matter.

A Legal Guide to the Sexual Harassment Frenzy

Media coverage of alleged sexual harassment is everywhere. The major news networks – MSNBC, CNN, NBC, CBS, ABC, WGN – are not only reporting on past and the latest allegations, but have also assembled panels of “experts” to voice opinions on what all of this means. Social media, of course, is awash in opinions, and there are dozens of new thinkpieces every day on various cultural and news blogs. Experienced criminal defense attorneys know how to assert control over this dialogue and media morass; at Wigell Law Group, we have long-standing relationships with journalists and reporters in both visual and print media that help us do so and get the defendant’s perspective out to viewers at home. This is crucial to provide a balanced look at the situation and to protect our clients’ rights.

This sexual misconduct frenzy has significant implications on our social culture and our interpretation of our past social interactions. Flirtation is a part of normal and healthy romantic interactions, and is now being viewed through the lens of sexual harassment – sometimes even retroactively! Garrison Keillor, of Minnesota Public Radio, for example, reported that he meant to pat a woman’s back consolingly and accidentally made contact with her bare skin. She recoiled, he said, and he apologized. The current frenzy over sexual harassment is likely causing many people to look back on their own experiences and think that perhaps they might have been victims as well, at least under the current stringent concepts of sexual harassment.

And as we can see from the stories of men like Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, Charlie Rose, George Takei, Russell Simmons, Kevin Spacey, Ed Westwick, Ben Affleck, Pixar’s John Lasseter, Roy Moore, Jeffrey Tambor, Lena Dunham, Brett Ratner, Al Franken, Louis CK, George H.W. Bush, Richard Dreyfuss, and surely more to come, events from many years ago can resurface, recontextualized, and there can be a very public reckoning.

This frenzy is also likely affecting our future social interactions. As with Koehler, many would seem far more reluctant to console another, for fear of accusation, or to flirt with someone they were attracted to. All of these implications are noteworthy.

What is not a focus, however, is how the individuals involved deal with the confrontational event.

Allegations and accusations of sexual misconduct, including sexual harassment, are seldom without disagreements. The accuser and the accused are in diametrically opposed positions, with one saying that misconduct occurred and the other either maintaining it did not or arguing the interpretation of the conduct in question. Even the terms used prior to determining actual or legal guilt can at times be prejudicial. Words like “perpetrator” and “victim” are very loaded and charged.

There is also room for error, without denigrating the suffering of those who feel wronged. False or at the very least exaggerated accusations, forced confessions wrenched from the accused, and motives rooted in revenge are prevalent. Shame and embarrassment, fear of reprisals, and the unfounded hope of reconciliation are all also prevalent.

Each side deserves to be heard. Each side, the one accusing and the one being accused, deserves to have an experienced attorney represent their interests and fight on their behalf. Only after a balanced, calm, and holistic approach to the investigation can justice occur.

Separate from the court of public opinion is the concept of legal analysis. Unlike the media, which can be well intentioned or self-righteous, legal analysis does not immediately jump to a conclusion. It certainly does not assume a conclusion and then require a remedy, i.e., punishment, money damages, a loss of contractual rights (getting fired, losing endorsements, being pressured to resign), etc.

Legal analysis, instead, is a process. First, the facts must be determined: what really did happen and what is either false or an exaggeration. Then, the law must be applied to those case facts. There are many sub-steps in this process. After all, complex questions and situations require complex and thoughtful analysis.

Facts are unique and case specific. This requires a complete and unbiased investigation by neutral and objective third parties.

Sexual harassment can be both a civil and criminal offense. Civil law protects and allows individuals to sue (to file a lawsuit) that asserts a claim. Money damages is the primary, but not sole, remedy in civil actions. Criminal law, on the other hand, seeks to protect society (all individuals) from the wrongdoing of a specific individual or corporation. Imprisonment, restitution to the individual victim (to “make that individual whole”) and fines are the primary remedies in criminal actions.

Two of the most commonly asked questions in sexual harassment matters are regarding the proper venue and the statute of limitations. Venue is where the action can be filed. Although this is a complex question, it is most often answered by determining where the wrongdoing took place and where the victim and/or accuser reside.

Statute of Limitations (S/L) questions are governed by local law and by proper venue. Civil and criminal S/L are governed by different laws (called statutes), and many times are different. Please use the links below to access additional information per Illinois statutes.

720 ILCS 5/3-6 governs the criminal statute of limitations on many offenses including sex-related offenses – regarding both adult and minors. This also covers offenses such as child pornography and prostitution. See specifically 720 ILCS 5/3-6(j)(1), which states that when the victim is under 18 years of age at the time of a sexual offense, a prosecution may be commenced at any time. This means there is no S/L

735 ILCS 5/13-202.2 governs the S/L in sexual misconduct involving children, or those under the age of 18. Specifically, 735 ILCS 5/13-202.2(d) states that the S/L does not run during a time that the minor is abused (threatened, intimidated, manipulated, or the victim of fraud perpetrated by the abuser), and that the S/L runs only after the minor reaches the age of 18, and if the person is under a legal disability at the time they turn 18, the S/L does not run until the disability is removed

720 ILCS 5/11-1.80 is the civil statute for sex crimes, and explains the civil liability that those convicted of a criminal sexual offense are exposed to.

 

What should a victim do?

To whom should a victim report the wrongdoing?

How should the report about the wrongdoing be transmitted?

If confronted, what should the accused do? How should he or she respond?

Is going to the media a good first step?

Is an in-person confrontation with the accused a good idea?

What is the value of the claim? From the victim’s perspective? From the perspective of the accused? Whose perspective controls?

Only an experienced local attorney can answer these questions. This is not simple math; it is not 1+1 = 2. Complex questions such as these demand complete, detailed analysis. At Wigell Law Group, we perform this analysis with regularity, and particular attention to nuance and implications.

As a sampling of my work, over the past 40+ years I have worked with victims, championing many high profile sex abuse and sexual harassment victims as well as the accused. That is correct: I have represented people on both sides of the wrongdoing. Good lawyering requires an understanding of both sides of a position. Understanding the strengths and weaknesses, the pros and cons, the leverage points, the deal-making and deal-breaking points, the negotiation options, and the strategies is essential.

I have also represented high profile (as well as regular) people in the political, corporate, theatrical, entertainment, professional sports, academic, fine art, and religious communities.

The victims I have championed have been from many different demographic groups: minors, majority-aged, older, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation (heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual and transgender), etc.

The accused are sometimes in positions of trust over the victims, which creates a charged environment and requires extra care and attention to detail. These relationships include supervisor and employee, corporate officers and supervisors, therapists and patients, dentists and patients, medical doctors and patients, teachers and students, school administrators and employees, mentors and mentees, religious leaders and followers, and more.

Sometimes, the report was of a recent wrongdoing; more often than not, the occurrences were a few years or even decades before. Older cases can be based on triggered memories, repressed memory syndrome (a topic that remains contentious and hotly debated in the medical and psychiatric community), or triggered by an event that relates to the individual’s PTSD. This adds all kinds of confusion and layers to the situation and requires an even more meticulous and holistic defense strategy.

I have also represented clients in both civil and criminal cases. Knowledge of the two very different and distinct areas, as well as the interplay between them, is crucial for any defendant that wants his attorney to maximize his position and limit his exposure. There are also different kinds of criminal cases in which these situations arise; I have successfully represented people during investigations as well as in cases that were charged on both the state and federal level.

Why didn’t you know about this? Why didn’t the media feature these victories? Because they were never brought to the media’s attention, or because it wasn’t the socially encouraged viewpoint.

In some of these cases, the victims wanted a confrontation with the accused. We accomplished that via personal meetings and significant money settlements. Abusers also wanted closure, so they did whatever was necessary to respectfully compensate the victims, both emotionally and financially.

Considering the current frenzy, the concept that current accusations that may be true, false, or exaggerated, merits careful thought.

I am skilled at representing individuals involved in these matters, on multiple levels and from multiple positions and perspectives. These are complex issues that, despite the slew of recent firings and resignations and loud condemnations, our society will not solve overnight. Complex issues require complex planning, insight, and strategy. They require skilled attorneys who use sophisticated, layered, nuanced approaches to create holistic winning defense strategies, like myself and my other attorneys at Wigell Law Group.

Representation of a Wide Multitude of Criminal Charges

Wigell Criminal Defense prides itself on its Holistic Winning Defense Strategies. The firm has represented many clients in a wide variety of criminal charges in the State of Illinois. Wigell Criminal Defense zealously represents their clients. We Win Criminal Defense Cases Other Lawyers Said Were Impossible To Win.

Wigell Criminal Defense (as of 11/2/17) represents clients charged in the State of Illinois of the following crimes/charges:

1. Sex Crimes
2. White Collar Crimes
3. Drug Crimes
4. Violent Crimes
5. Weapons Crimes
6. Property Crimes
7. Other Crimes

1. Sex Crimes

Aggravated Criminal Sexual Assault (720 ILCS 5/12-14)
Attempt Aggravated Criminal Sexual Assault (720 ILCS 5/8-4(11-1.30)
Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse (720 ILCS 5/12-16)
Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse (Juvenile) (720 ILCS 5/12-16)
Criminal Sexual Abuse (720 ILCS 5/11-1.50)
Attempt Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse of a Family Member under 18 (720 ILCS 5/11-1.60 (b))
Criminal Sexual Assault (720 ILCS 5/11-1.20)
Predatory Criminal Sexual Assault (720 ILCS 5/12-14.1)
Sexual Exploitation of a Child (720 ILCS 5/11-9.1)
Possession of Child Pornography (720 ILCS 5/11-20.1)
Aggravated Possession of Child Pornography (720 ILCS 5/11-20.1)
Dissemination of Child Pornography (720 ILCS 5/11-20.1)
Traveling to Meet a Minor (720 ILCS 5/11-26)
Public Indecency (720 ILCS 5/11-9)
Obscenity (720 ILCS 5/11-20)
Indecent Solicitation of a Child (720 ILCS 5/11-6(a))
Grooming (720 ILCS 5/11-25)
Solicitation to Meet a Child (720 ILCS 5/11-6.6(a))
Sex Trafficking (720 ILCS 5/10-9)

2. White Collar Crimes

Continuing Financial Crimes Enterprise (720 ILCS 5/17-10.6(h))
Financial Institution Fraud (720 ILCS 5/17-10.6(c))
RICO (720 ILCS 5/33G)
Theft (720 ILCS 5/16-1)
Forgery (720 ILCS 5/17-3)
Identity Theft (720 ILCS 5/16-30)
Deceptive Practices (720 ILCS 5/17-1)
Mail Fraud & Wire Fraud (720 ILCS 5/17-24)
Computer Fraud (720 ILCS 5/17-50)
Internet Offenses (720 ILCS 5/16-40)

3. Drug Crimes

Drug Trafficking (720 ILCS 570/401.1)
Cannabis Trafficking (720 ILCS 550/5.1)
Unlawful Possession of Cannabis with Intent to Deliver (720 ILCS 550/5(g))
Manufacture or Delivery of Cannabis (720 ILCS 550/5(d))
Unlawful Possession of Cannabis (720 ILCS 550/4(g))
Manufacture and Delivery of Cocaine (720 ILCS 570/401(a)(2))C))
Possession of Cocaine (720 ILCS 570/402(a)(2)(C))
DUI (625 ILCS 5/11-501(A))
Aggravated DUI (625 ILCS 5/11-501(D))

4. Violent Crimes

First Degree Murder (720 ILCS 5/9-1)
Attempted First Degree Murder (720 ILCS 5/8-4(a))
RICO (720 ILCS 5/33G)
Armed Robbery (720 ILCS 5/18-2)
Attempt Armed Robbery (720 ILCS 8/4 (18-2(a)(2))
Aggravated Robbery (720 ILCS 5/18-1)
Home Invasion (720 ILCS 5/19-6)
Aggravated Kidnapping (720 ILCS 5/10-2)
Aggravated Battery (720 ILCS 5/12-3.05)
Aggravated Domestic Battery (720 ILCS 5/12-3.3)
Battery (720 ILCS 5/12-3)
Aggravated Assault (720 ILCS 5/12-2)
Unlawful Restraint (720 ILCS 5/10-3)
Aggravated Unlawful Restraint (720 ILCS 5/10-3.1 (A))

5. Weapons Crimes

Armed Violence (720 ILCS 5/33A-2(a))
Unlawful Use of a Weapon (720 ILCS 5/24-1)
Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon (720 ILCS 5/24-1.6)
Unlawful Use or Possession of a Weapon by a Felon (720 ILCS 5/24-1.1)
Aggravated Discharge of a Firearm (720 ILCS 24/1.2(a)(2))
Defacing the Identification Marks of a Firearm (720 ILCS 5/24-5(b))

6. Property Crimes

Residential Burglary (720 ILCS 5/19-3)
Retail Theft (720 ILCS 5/16-25)
Possession of a Stolen Motor Vehicle (625 ILCS 5/4-103)
Felony Driving on a Suspended/Revoked License (625 5/6-303(a)/(d))
Obstruction of Justice (720 ILCS 5/31-4)

7. Other Crimes

Concealing or Aiding a Fugitive (720 ILCS 5/31-5(a))
Violation of Bail Bond (720 ILCS 5/32-10)
Violation of Probation (730 ILCS 5/5-6-4)
Violation of Mandatory Supervised Release (730 ILCS 5/3-3-9)

Wigell Criminal Defense-Representing Clients throughout the State of Illinois and Outside the State of Illinois.

Wigell Criminal Defense strives to deliver top quality representation. Since 1975, the firm has developed and successfully executed Holistic Winning Defense Strategies. Our firm has developed an excellent reputation not only throughout the State of Illinois, but outside the State of Illinois, Nationally and Internationally. Our firm represents clients charged with federal crimes in many states outside of Illinois as well as countries outside of the United States. Our firm has also represented clients in 36+ of the 102 counties in Illinois. A list of current case locations is at the end of this post.

Representing clients in different federal jurisdictions and Illinois counties on the state level can be a challenging task to an attorney who does not regularly engage in practice outside of their home county or federal jurisdiction. Each federal jurisdiction and county court operates differently as they each have their distinct customs and terminology for certain court procedures. Judges and prosecutors in different federal jurisdictions and counties have varying types of idiosyncrasies which can be challenging to work with.

At Wigell Criminal Defense, having the opportunity to serve our clients in multiple federal jurisdictions outside the State of Illinois and Unites States as well as counties throughout the state of Illinois have given us the opportunity to learn and assimilate to these different cultures. We also have learned how to positively interact with Judges and Prosecutors throughout these federal jurisdictions and counties to better serve our clients.

Another benefit to serving clients in multiple federal jurisdictions outside of Illinois and counties throughout Illinois is the experience that Wigell Criminal Defense brings to each and every case. Many local attorneys in the smaller outlying counties do not have the level of experience of handling complex felony cases. Many of the local attorneys do not handle complex felony cases on a regular basis as the volume of these types of cases is typically lower in smaller counties. Wigell Criminal Defense has handled all types of complex federal and state felony cases on multiple occasions throughout its 41+ years of practice. The firm has developed the skills and knowledge necessary to handle its cases diligently and effectively.

Wigell Criminal Defense provides top quality representation to all of its clients throughout the State of Illinois and the multiple jurisdictions outside of Illinois. Our team approach continues to employ holistic winning strategies to obtain extraordinary results in complex and difficult cases that other lawyers said were impossible to win.

Our practice serves clients in Federal Courts within and outside The State of Illinois. Wigell Criminal Defense is currently representing clients nationally and internationally in the following Federal Jurisdictions and International Jurisdictions:

The Northern District of Illinois
o Chicago
The Central District of Illinois
• Springfield
• Peoria
______________________________________________________________
• Southbend, Indiana, U.S.A. (Northern District of Indiana)
• Davenport, Iowa, U.S.A. (District Court of Iowa, Eastern Division)
• St. Paul, Minnesota, U.S.A. (District Court of Minnesota)
• St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A (Eastern District of Missouri)
• Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. (District Court of California, Central Division)
• Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.A.
• Charlotte, North Carolina, U.S.A.
_______________________________________________________________
• Istanbul, Turkey
• London, U.K.

WCD currently represents clients in the following municipal districts:

• Cook County-Chicago (1st Municipal District)
• 26th and California
• 555 West Harrison

• Cook County-Suburban Districts

Additionally, outside of Chicago, Cook County has 5 suburban districts which handle all criminal cases in the suburbs encompassed within the specified district

• Skokie
o 2nd Municipal District
• Bridgeview
o 5th Municipal District
• Markham
o 6th Municipal District

Will County, City of Joliet
DuPage County, City of Wheaton
Kane County, City of St. Charles
Kendall County, City of Yorkville
Champaign County, City of Urbana
Grundy County, City of Morris
Ogle County, City of Oregon
Henry County, City of Cambridge

Wigell Criminal Defense-Representing Individuals Charged on the Federal Level

Wigell Criminal Defense has represented clients charged in Federal District Court for over 41 years. The Federal Criminal Court System is significantly different from state court. When a client is charged with a Federal Criminal Matter, he/she should be represented by an experienced federal criminal defense attorney.

Additionally, when a client is under investigation by a Federal Law Enforcement Agency and no charges have been filed at that time, it is crucial for a client to have an attorney representing him/her at this stage. Having an attorney at this stage may mitigate or even avoid Federal Criminal Charges all together. Examples of the Federal Law Enforcement Agencies that WCD has interacted with include:

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

Homeland Security Investigations (HSI)

Secret Service (SS)

Internal-Revenue Service-Criminal-Investigation-Division (IRS-CID)

Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF)

Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)

U.S. Postal Inspectors (USPI)

United States Department of Labor Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations

International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL)

Wigell Criminal Defense is currently representing clients under investigation and charged with the following federal crimes:

Sex Trafficking (18 U.S.C § 1591)

Conspiracy to Commit Sex Trafficking (18 U.S.C. § 1594)

Conspiracy to Commit Transportation to Engage in Prostitution (18 U.S.C. § 371)

Conspiracy to Engage in Money Laundering (18 U.S.C. § 1956)

Conspiracy to Use A Communication Facility to Promote Prostitution (18 U.S.C. § 371)

Identity Theft (18 U.S.C §1028(a))

Postal Theft (18 U.S.C § 1708)

Possession of a Controlled Substance (21 U.S.C. 841)

Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Distribute (21 U.S.C § 841)

Possession of Child Pornography (18 U.S.C § 1952)

Distribution of Child Pornography (21 U.S.C § 843)

Tax Evasion (26 U.S.C § 7201)

Tax Fraud (26 U.S.C § 7201)

Counterfeiting and Forgery (18 U.S.C § 25)

Insurance Fraud (18 U.S.C § 1956)

Possession of Firearm in Interstate Commerce (18 U.S.C § 922)

Fraud (18 U.S.C § 47)

Wire Fraud (18 U.S.C § 1343)

UCB Fraud (31 USC §3729)

Interstate Commerce of Contraband (15 U.S.C § 715(b))

Transportation of Child Pornography (18 U.S.C § 2252)

Receipt of Child Pornography (18 USC § 2252A)

Distribution of Child Pornography (21 U.S.C § 843)

Possession of Child Pornography (18 U.S.C § 1952)

Conspiracy to distribute and to possess with the intent to distribute a controlled substance (21 U.S.C § 846)

Manufacturing and Delivery of Heroin >500 grams (18 U.S.C § 841)

Brandishment of a Firearm in Furtherance of Violence (18 U.S.C § 2241)

Felon Possession of a Weapon (18 U.S.C § 2241)

RICO (Rackateering Influenced Corrupt Organizations Act) (18 U.S.C § 96)

Wire Fraud (18 U.S.C § 1343)

Conspiracy to Access or Caused to be Accessed a Protected Computer (18 U.S.C § 1030)

Fraud (18 U.S.C § 47)

Postal Theft (18 U.S.C § 1708)

Filing A False Tax Return (26 U.S.C § 7206(2))

Medicaid Fraud (18 U.S.C. § 287)

Copyright Infringement (17 U.S.C. § 506(a))

Conspiracy to Commit Federal Program Bribery (18 U.S.C § 371)

Conspiracy to Commit Extortion (18 U.S.C § 1951(a))

Aggravated Sexual Abuse of a Minor (18 U.S.C § 2241)

Theft of Government Funds (18, U.S.C § 641)

Presenting False Claims (18 U.S.C § 287)

Conspiracy to Traffic in Contraband Cigarettes (18 U.S.C § 2342)

Illinois Eliminates The Statute of Limitations for Child Sex Crimes

Illinois has now eliminated the statute of limitations for commencing a criminal prosecution in certain sex offenses involving a minor (under the age of 18 years at the time of the offense).

Previously, the law in Illinois stated that a minor victim of sexual assault (under the age of 18 at the time of the offense) must file criminal charges twenty years after attaining the age of 18. Which previously meant that charges must be filed before the “victim’s” 38th birthday. This is no longer the case in Illinois.

The new law (SB189) passed by both the Illinois Senate and Illinois House, and approved by the Governor now eliminates the Statute of Limitations in its criminal prosecutions for child sex cases.

SB189 provides in pertinent part:

720 ILCS 5/3-6(j)(1) When the victim is under 18 years of age at the time of the offense, a prosecution for criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual assault, predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, aggravated criminal sexual abuse, or felony criminal sexual abuse may be commenced at any time when corroborating physical evidence is available or an individual who is required to report an alleged or suspected commission of any of these offenses under the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act fails to do so.

So essentially, a prosecution for the above-named sex offenses in relation to minors can be filed at any time. Additionally, the new law eliminates the requirement that corroborating physical evidence be available. The new law also eliminates the requirement that an individual must fail to report any of these offenses under the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act.

Note: The new law is not without its restrictions.

The primary restriction of the bill is that the law is not “retroactive.” What not being retroactive means is that a new law does not apply to incidents prior to the new law’s enactment, August 11, 2017. An example to best illustrate the issue of retroactively in this context is as follows:

  •  If an individual was 38 years old (20 years after attaining one’s 18th birthday after the alleged sexual abuse) prior to the enactment date of the new law, the old law still applies. Basically, if the individual turned 38 years old on August 10, 2017, the twenty-year requirement to commence a criminal prosecution under the old law had expired and still applies. The new law would not apply since it was passed on August 11, 2017, thus, it was not in effect at the time the statute of limitations under the old law expired.

The Change in the Statute of Limitations Applies to Criminal Cases Only, Not Civil Cases

It should also be noted that this bill ONLY APPLIES to the commencement of criminal prosecutions for the above-mentioned types of sex offenses. The bill does not apply to filing a civil case. Criminal and Civil laws differ in purpose:

  • The purpose of a criminal law is to protect society from criminal wrongdoing and to punish the wrongdoer.
  • The purpose of a civil law is to give a person who was sexually abused the right to seek monetary compensation from the alleged perpetrator.

The current Statute of Limitations for filing a civil cause of action in the civil courts is 20 years after the victim’s 18th birthday (i.e. the person’s 38th birthday).

However, A bill (HB 3629) has recently been proposed to eliminate the 20-year statute of limitations requirement in its entirety for civil cases. The objective of the new bill would give victims the opportunity to file a civil case at ANY TIME without any time limitations for filing. It currently is awaiting House approval before proceeding to the Senate.

Conclusion:

If you or someone you know is a victim of a sex crime when they were a minor, it is important to consult with an experienced attorney. An experienced attorney will determine whether the statute of limitations either civilly or criminally allows or eliminates an action.

If you or someone you know has been charged or is under investigation for a sex crime, it is imperative you speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney. It is imperative to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney who is well versed in not only the nuances and complexities of sex crimes, but the nuances and complexities posed when the issue of an extended statute of limitations arises.

Contact Wigell Criminal Defense to speak to an experienced attorney regarding these types of charges.

Childhood Sexual Abuse-Statute of Limitations-Civil and Criminal

Childhood Sexual Abuse is one of the most traumatic experiences that a person can endure in their childhood. In many instances, childhood sexual abuse can go on for months, even years without anyone reporting the occurrence of the abuse.  In some instances, some victims fail to report the abuse for months to years, even decades, for a variety of reasons.  These reasons can range from:

  • Fear of the perpetrator
  • Embarrassment of being a victim of such abuse
  • Not wanting to face the trauma of the abuse
  • Wanting to forget what happened and move on
  • In some instances, the victim may recover the repressed the memory of the sexual abuse during their adulthood

Civil Statute of Limitations

Recognizing these reasons, the State legislature over the past several decades have made changes to the Statute of Limitations to help the victims obtain relief in civil causes of action. Specifically, the legislature has made changes to the statute of limitations for filing a cause of action of Childhood Sexual Abuse by extending the limitations time period for filing. The statute of limitations in child sex abuse cases plays a very important role when determining the viability of filing a cause of action in the civil courts.

The current Statute of Limitations for filing a cause of action in the civil courts is 20 years after the victim’s 18th birthday.  This time period for filing has been extended significantly over the past several decades.  The statute defines Childhood Sexual Abuse as an act of sexual abuse that occurs when the person abused was UNDER 18 years of age at the time of the abuse.  The statute of limitations does not begin running until the victim turns 18.

There are also nuances to the Statute of Limitations that a victim should be aware of if they are considering to file this type of cause of action. There are traditional and specific nuances to the statute of limitations. The traditional nuances to filing under the civil statute of limitations that apply to all civil cases.  Those traditional nuances include:

  • Plaintiff is a minor.
  • Plaintiff has been deemed insane.
  • Plaintiff has been convicted of a felony and is imprisoned
  • Defendant is in bankruptcy.
  • Defendant is not physically present in a state.
  • Filing of an action which is later voluntarily dismissed.
  • Parties were engaged in good-faith negotiations to resolve the dispute

There are specific nuances to the statute of limitations that apply specifically to a civil cause of action of Childhood Sexual Abuse. Those specific nuances include:

  • One such nuance is what is known as the “Discovery Rule.” The discovery rule is a variation to the statute’s requirement that the 20-year period begins to run after the victim has attained the age of 18. The discovery rule tolls (Tolling is a legal doctrine which allows for the pausing or delaying of the running of the period of time set forth by a statute of limitations) the statute of limitations until the person discovers that they were victims of the sexual abuse and that they sustained an injury resulting from the sexual abuse.  One scenario triggering the discovery rule is when a victim previously repressed the memory of the sexual abuse and recovered that memory through psychotherapy. When that memory is recovered and it is determined that the injury was caused by the childhood sexual abuse, then the statute of limitations begins to run from the date the victim discovers BOTH the memory of the abuse and that the injury they sustained was caused by the sexual abuse. Knowledge of the abuse alone does not trigger the “discovery rule” alone but the victim must also discover that he or she sustained an injury caused by the sexual abuse.
  • Another variation to the discovery rule is when there is a continuing series of childhood sexual abuse by the same abuser. To give rise to the continuing series variation, the injury must be caused by two or more acts of the childhood sexual abuse that are a part of the continuing series of sexual abuse by the same abuser. The discovery rule shall be computed for the date the victim abused discovers both the last act of childhood sexual abuse occurred in the continuing series and that the injury was caused by ANY act of the childhood sexual abuse in the continuing series. Knowledge of the abuse alone does not trigger the “discovery rule” alone either in this variation. As with the previously mentioned variation of the discovery rule, the victim must also discover that the injury sustained by the sexual abuse. In this case, the injury can result from ANY ACT of the continuing series.
  • Another nuance to the discovery rule is if the victim at the time of the age of 18 is subject to a legal disability. In this instance, the statute of limitations does not begin to run until the Victim’s legal disability is removed.
  • Additionally, the statute of limitations can also be tolled during a time period where the victim is subject to threats, intimidation, manipulation or fraud perpetrated by the abuser or any person acting on behalf of the abuser. The statute of limitations would essentially stop running during the specific time period where the victim Is subject to the aforementioned conduct.

The Statute of limitations has been extended by the legislature on several occasions over the recent years to help the victims of sexual abuse obtain relief. The legislature continues to make efforts to further extend the statute of limitations.  A new bill (HB 3629) has recently been proposed to eliminate the 20-year statute of limitations requirement in its entirety.  The objective of the new bill would give victims the opportunity to file a cause of action at ANY TIME without any time limitations for filing.  It currently is awaiting House approval before proceeding to the Senate.

Criminal Prosecution Statute of Limitations

In addition to the statute of limitations in filing a civil cause of action, there is also a statute of limitations nuance regarding filing criminal charges in prosecutions in child sex cases.

As of 2003, the current law in Illinois is that a victim of sexual assault as a minor (under the age of 18 at the time of the offense) must file criminal charges twenty years after attaining the age of 18. That means it must be filed before the “victim’s” 38th birthday.  This is the current law in Illinois.

However, a new bill (SB189) has recently passed the Senate and the House eliminating the Statute of Limitations in its entirety in prosecutions for child sex cases. SB189 provides in pertinent part:

  • Provides that when the victim is under 18 years of age at the time of the offense, a prosecution for criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual assault, predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, aggravated criminal sexual abuse, or criminal sexual abuse may be commenced at any time regardless as to whether corroborating physical evidence is available or an individual who is required to report an alleged or suspected commission of any of these offenses under the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act fails to do so. (Emphasis Added)

So essentially, a prosecution for the above-named sex offenses in relation to minors can be filed at any time. The bill is now awaiting Governor Bruce Rauner’s signature to become law.

If you or someone you know is the victim of childhood sexual abuse, there is hope for relief. The victim should contact an experienced attorney to determine whether they have a viable civil cause of action. Determining the viability of filing a cause of action of Childhood Sexual Abuse requires a very diligent and detailed analysis due to the complexity of the nature of this cause of action.  It is imperative to consult an experienced attorney who is well versed in the nuances and complexities of this cause of action.

If you are considering pursuing this particular type of cause of action, contact the Law Offices of Raymond G. Wigell, Ltd to speak to an experienced attorney to determine the viability of pursuing such a claim.

Charges: Possession of a Firearm by a Street Gang Member–Class 2 Felony (2-10 years IDOC), Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon (AUUW)-Class 4 Felony (1-3 Years IDOC); Result: ALL CHARGES DISMISSED ON DAY OF TRIAL

Client was accused of illegally possessing a loaded gun. Specifically, the client was accused of running from police who responded to a call of shots fired.  The client was further accused of entering a home without permission and was allegedly witnessed by police tossing the loaded gun into a speaker box in an attempt to hide it.  To make matters more serious, the police further accused the client of being a member of a Chicago Street Gang while illegally possessing the loaded gun.

The Charges are broken down as follows:

  • Possession of a Firearm by a Street Gang Member
    • Class 2 Felony (3-10 Years IDOC)
    • An individual convicted of this charge must serve at least 50% of their sentence before being eligible for Mandatory Supervised Release (Formerly Known as Parole)
    • This charge is also NON-PROBATIONABLE
    • A Class 2 felony is typically 3-7 years in the penitentiary. However, this offense is subject to an extended 3-10 years IDOC sentencing parameter due the nature of the charge resulting from the individual being a member of a Street Gang while illegally possessing a loaded firearm.
  • Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon (AUUW)
    • Class 4 Felony (1-3 years IDOC)
    • An individual convicted of this charge must serve at least 50% of their sentence before being eligible for Mandatory Supervised Release (Formerly Known as Parole)
    • This charge is also NON-PROBATIONABLE and individual must serve a mandatory sentence of 1 year in IDOC due to the nature of the charge.
    • The client was also charged with multiple counts of AUUW predicated on the following theories:
      • Did not possess a valid FOID (Firearm Owners Identification) card.
      • Did not possess a valid Conceal and Carry License
      • Client was under 21 years old while in possession of the firearm
      • The theories were also predicated upon the client being on a public street and not in his own home.

After entering the case, the Wigell Criminal Defense attorneys immediately began analyzing the discovery and preparing the case for trial. After a review of the discovery, conducting extensive case law research and multiple meetings with the client, WCD set the case for trial.

After multiple trial delays mostly attributed to the prosecution due to the absence of essential witnesses, mainly police officers, it was finally revealed that one of the police officers was suspended.   Without this witness, the State’s case ultimately fell apart.

After this fact was brought to the attention of the Judge, the Judge ordered the prosecution to provide further information as to the nature of the Officer’s suspension. The prosecution attempted to obtain a continuance.  WCD objected to the continuance and argued that the suspended officer was an essential prosecution witness.  WCD further eluded that the State would not be able to prove their case without this officer and noted the multiple trial delays in the case.  As a result, the Judge denied the State’s motion for a continuance.

After passing the case and conducting their inquiry, the case was recalled and the prosecution immediately DISMISSED ALL CHARGES and acquiesced they would not be able to prove their case.

The client was ecstatic with this extraordinary result. Client was grateful for WCD’s team approach, zealous and aggressive representation which exposed the weaknesses in the State’s case and ultimately resulted in dismissal of all the charges.  The client was finally able to move forward with his life and was finally free of fear the potential lengthy prison sentence he was facing.

Potential Sentence: Methamphetamine Conspiracy (Class X) 6-30 Years; Possession of Methamphetamine Precursor (Class 2 Felony 3-7 Years) WCD Result: Class X Charge dismissed; 30 Months Drug Court Probation (No Felony Conviction upon Successful Completion)

Our client was arrested and charged with Methamphetamine Conspiracy and Possession of Methamphetamine Precursor in Dewitt County. Specifically, our client was accused of participating in a Methamphetamine Conspiracy with several other co-defendants. It was alleged her role was to acquire cough medicine from the local pharmacy and provide it to the other co-defendants so they could use the cough medicine to cook Methamphetamine. The arrests stemmed from a lengthy Illinois State Police Drug Task Force Investigation and Surveillance Operation. The client also suffered from serious drug addiction issues. Realizing the complexity and seriousness of her case, the client hired Wigell Criminal Defense to represent her.

After entering the case, the case proceeded to a preliminary hearing. The lead investigator of the Illinois State Police testified at the preliminary hearing. Effective cross-examination by Attorney Jim DiQuattro of WCD at the preliminary hearing revealed multiple weaknesses and inconsistencies in the State’s case. As a result of the weaknesses and inconsistencies exposed by the preliminary hearing, the attorneys of Wigell Criminal Defense immediately began preparing the case for trial.

The State’s Attorney in the case acknowledged the multiple weaknesses in its case and approached the attorneys of WCD with a very interesting proposition. The State offered the client 30 months of Drug Court Probation if she agreed to become a cooperating State witness.

The client acknowledging her drug addiction issue and willingness to accept other conditions, accepted the proposition. Prior to entering the plea, the client with WCD met with the lead investigator of The Illinois State Police for a proffer. A proffer is when the individual participates in an interview with the prosecutor and/or officers of the investigating Law Enforcement Agency. The purpose of this interview is for the individual to provide information to the Prosecution and or/police to assist in their investigation and in this case to help build a case against the co-defendants. At this meeting, the client provided the Investigator with all the information she knew about the Meth Conspiracy and the nature of her role.

The client was placed on 30 months Drug Court Probation and the Class X charge was dismissed. Additionally, the client’s conviction will be vacated upon her successful completion of the Drug Court probation program and certain conditions.

Client was overjoyed with the outcome and was also very dedicated to getting the help she needed to treat her long term drug addiction. The client was grateful for all of the hard work of the attorneys of Wigell Criminal Defense which lead to this extraordinary result. The client will now be able to get the help that she needs to ultimately overcome her drug addiction thus giving her a second chance at life.

Charges: Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse-Class 2 Felony (3-7 Years IDOC); Potential Result: 3-7 years prison; Lifetime Sex Offender Registration Requirement; WCD RESULT: PROBATION ON A REDUCED CHARGE OF MISDEMEANOR BATTERY; NO PRISON TIME; NO FELONY CONVICTION; NO MANDATORY LIFETIME SEX OFFENDER REGISTRATION REQUIREMENT

Our client, a successful businessman, was charged with Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse. Specifically, a 12 year old friend of his daughter accused our client of touching her in an inappropriate sexual manner one night during a sleepover.

The charge of Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse is broken down as follows:

  • Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse
    • Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse is a class 2 felony punishable from 3-7 Years in the penitentiary (Illinois Department of Corrections)
    • An individual convicted of Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse must serve at least 50% of their sentence before being eligible for Mandatory Supervised Release (Formerly Known as Parole).
    • A conviction of this charge requires MANDATORY LIFETIME SEX OFFENDER REGISTRATION.

Fearful of the implications this charge could have on his future, career and family; the client hired Wigell Criminal Defense to represent him. After a detailed and methodical review of the discovery and multiple meetings with the client, it was determined that the State’s case had multiple weaknesses and the case should be taken to trial.

As the case progressed, the Assistant State’s Attorney assigned to the case filed a 115-10 Motion. This type of motion is typically filed to allow certain statements admitted into evidence at a trial which would be normally considered hearsay.  Hearsay can be defined as a statement made by someone not testifying in court that to be used as evidence to show that a defendant committed a crime (the truth of the matter asserted).  Hearsay is typically prohibited from being introduced as evidence at trial outside of various exceptions enumerated in the law.  In this case, Illinois law has a Statutory exception under 725 ILCS 5/115-10 that allows for out of court statements in cases involving a physical or sexual act perpetrated against a child who is under the age of 13.  This allows “outcry” witnesses to testify in court to an out of court statement the child made to them.

In our client’s case, the complaining witness made an “outcry statement” to two witnesses regarding the alleged sexual touching she accused our client of committing against her. The attorneys of Wigell Criminal Defense acknowledged the filing of this motion and indicated their opposition to the motion and the intention of taking the case to jury trial.

While preparing for the 115-10 Motion Hearing and trial, Wigell Criminal Defense continued to negotiate. After significant negotiations, the assistant state’s attorney agreed to reduce the felony charge of Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse to a misdemeanor charge of battery.  Thus, all sex charges were eliminated. THIS RESULT ELIMINATED A FELONY CONVICTION AND LIFETIME SEX OFFENDER REGISTRATION.

The client accepted the offer without hesitation. The client was grateful for the all the hard work and dedication the attorneys and staff of Wigell Criminal Defense put into his case.  This result protected his career and ultimately saved his future.  Additionally, the client will be eligible to have the misdemeanor battery conviction sealed after the requisite waiting period has passed.

Ratings and Reviews

The National Trial Lawyers
10.0Raymond George Wigell
Raymond George WigellReviewsout of 38 reviews