Unlawful Use of a Weapon
Illinois has some of the strictest gun laws in the country. In spite of that, violence and shootings caused by the spread of guns in Chicago is out of control. Local and national media is continuously reporting on the number of shootings in Chicago. Chicago residents wake up on Monday morning to find out how many shootings occurred over the weekend. The intense scrutiny on the gun violence in Chicago is causing local politicians and the local police to focus heavily on preventing gun violence. Legislators are imposing new laws to make it more difficult to own a gun and local police are cracking down trying to take guns off of the street. This has caused a jump in the number of prosecutions for gun related crimes. Up until a few years ago, Illinois was the only state that did not allow its citizens to legally carry a gun in public for protection. After the Illinois Supreme Court ruled that it was unconstitutional for the State of Illinois to not have any way for a citizen to lawfully carry a gun in public the Illinois State Legislature changed the law and added a mechanism by which citizens could lawfully carry a gun in public. This is known as the Conceal and Carry Law. Unless you have a Conceal and Carry permit, you cannot carry a gun in public. In order to own a gun, you must have a Firearm Owner's Identification Card (FOID).
Unlawful of a Weapon (UUW) is a very serious crime in Illinois. If you are arrested for having a gun in public, and you do not have a Conceal and Carry Permit, you will be charged with a UUW. If you did not have an FOID Card or if the gun was loaded, you will be charged with an Aggravated UUW. If you are facing a UUW or an Aggravated UUW in Illinois, you could be facing the very real possibility of a jail sentence. You will need the services of an experienced and knowledgeable Chicago criminal defense lawyer who has the experience and proven track record of handling UUW cases in Illinois to help you avoid jail and a conviction on your criminal record that can never be removed.
The Illinois gun laws are complicated. Chicago criminal defense lawyer, James Dimeas, has spent the past 25 years handling gun cases throughout Cook County, DuPage County, and Kane County. UUW lawyer, James Dimeas, has won gun cases at trial and had convictions for past gun cases vacated and overturned.How to Legally Own a Gun in Illinois?
Required to have an FOID Card - If you are an Illinois resident and you want to own a gun, you are required to have an FOID card 720 ILCS 66/1. To obtain an FOID card you must fill out an application with the Illinois State Police, pay a small fee and after a very thorough background search you will be issued the FOID card by the Illinois State Police. The FOID card allows you to own a gun in your home. You can also transport a gun provided that you make sure that the gun is unloaded, uncased and not immediately accessible. It is not legal to transport a loaded gun in Illinois under your car seat or in the glove compartment of your car.
Conceal and Carry Permit - The only way to legally carry a concealed firearm on your person or in your car in Illinois if you have a Conceal and Carry permit 430 ILCS 66/1 issued by the Illinois State Police. Even if you have a Conceal and Carry permit Illinois state law allows certain businesses, public and private, to ban weapons from their property. The property owner will post signs on the property notifying people that guns are not allowed.What is a UUW in Illinois?
If you are a resident of Illinois and you own a gun and you do not have an FOID card, you are violating the law and can be charged and convicted of an Unlawful Use of a Weapon (UUW) crime. Most of the time, if you had an FOID card and you were not properly transporting a gun and the gun was unloaded, you will be charged with a misdemeanor UUW.What is an Aggravated UUW in Illinois?
Aggravated UUW is a much more serious criminal offense in Illinois. You can be guilty of an Aggravated UUW in Illinois if you do not have an FOID card and a Conceal and Carry Permit and you are arrested for carrying a loaded gun on your person or in your car. Many out-of-state residents who are spending time in Illinois do not understand that while it may be legal in their home state to carry a gun they must comply with the strict Illinois gun laws or else they will be facing a UUW or Aggravated UUW charge in Illinois. Even Illinois residents that have a valid FOID card end up getting arrested and charged with a new UW simply because they did not realize that their FOID card had expired. Not knowing that your FOID card had expired is not a defense to a UUW or Aggravated UUW in Illinois.What is the Penalty for a UUW or Aggravated UUW in Illinois?
A misdemeanor UUW in Illinois is a class A misdemeanor which carries a maximum punishment of up to one year in jail and a fine up to $2,500. You can get Court Supervision or Conditional Discharge for a UUW in Illinois. An Aggravated UUW in Illinois is a class 4 felony which carries a potential jail sentence of one to three years. Most prosecutors are unwilling and unable to enter into meaningful negotiations for any agreements that call for anything less than jail time when it comes to a UUW or and Aggravated UUW charge. This is true in Cook County, DuPage County and Kane County. The intense public and media focus on gun crimes in Illinois has caused many prosecutors to take a very hard line approach when it comes to UUW and Aggravated UUW cases in Illinois. As a result, a criminal charge of UUW or Aggravated UUW in Illinois must be taken seriously and fought very hard because the potential consequences can be very severe.Effective and Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer for UUW and Aggravated UUW Charges in Illinois
Chicago criminal defense lawyer, James Dimeas, has dedicated the past 25 years to fighting UUW and Aggravated UUW cases in Cook County, DuPage County, and Kane County. James Dimeas, an experienced UUW and Aggravated UUW lawyer, understands that many times, in their zeal to find a gun, the police will conduct stops of vehicles and of pedestrians for no reason. They will search people and their vehicles without a warrant and without probable cause. James Dimeas will file Motions to Suppress the stops and searches and will have the evidence seized thrown out. Sometimes the police will question suspects without reading them their rights. UUW lawyer, James Dimeas, will file a motion to have the statements made thrown out.
Chicago UUW criminal defense lawyer, James Dimeas, will fight to protect your constitutional right to own a firearm and to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. Chicago UUW criminal defense lawyer, James Dimeas, has been at the forefront of the fight for gun rights in the criminal courts of Cook County, DuPage County and Kane County for the past 25 years. James Dimeas has been challenging the strict gun laws of Illinois and has been winning gun cases for the past 25 years. James Dimeas has the unique experience and knowledge of the UUW and Aggravated UUW laws in Illinois to provide you the experience and effective legal representation you will need if you are facing UUW and Aggravated UUW charges in Cook County, DuPage County, and Kane County.
UUW Lawyer, James Dimeas, has been recognized as a Top 100 Criminal Defense Trail Lawyer by The National Trial Lawyers. He has been recognized as a Best DUI Lawyer. Expertise has recognized James Dimeas as a Best Criminal Defense Lawyer in Chicago.
If you are facing UUW or Aggravated UUW charges in Cook County, DuPage County, or Kane County, you can contact Chicago UUW criminal defense lawyer, James Dimeas, for a free and confidential consultation. You can always speak to Mr. Dimeas by calling him anytime to discuss your case. He can help you win your case. James Dimeas can be reached anytime at 847-807-7405.