What Does 720 ILCS Mean?
Getting charged with a crime in Illinois is a serious matter. There are numerous crimes you can face charges for, and it can be confusing to understand not only the crime itself but also your rights.
If you are charged with a crime in Illinois, it falls under 720 ILCS. The 720 part is for Chapter 720, which covers all criminal offenses in the state. ILCS stands for the Illinois Compiled Statutes. So if you have a 720 ILCS charge, you’ll want to obtain a criminal defense lawyer who is familiar with the statutes and the best possible defenses to get those charges reduced or dismissed.
Under Chapter 720, the statutes go through the six different types of criminal offenses that could have you facing charges.
Part A covers inchoate offenses – attempts to commit crimes without actual harm being done.
Part B covers offenses directed against another person such as homicide, kidnapping, trafficking, sex crimes, assault and battery, and harm to children.
- 720 ILCS 5/12-3: Battery – causing bodily harm to another person or insulting, provoking, or unwanted physical contact
- 720 ILCS 5/11-1.20: Criminal Sexual Assault – if a person uses force to commit sexual penetration or if the victim is unable to give consent or is a minor
- 720 ILCS 5/11-9: Public Indecency – if a person exposes him- or herself in public
- 720 ILCS 5/12-3.4: Violation of an Order of Protection – if a person knowingly commits an act prohibited by the court
Part C covers offenses directed against property such as theft, fraud, robbery, burglary, arson, vandalism, and trespassing.
- 720 ILCS 5/19-1: Burglary – when a person knowingly enters a place without permission with the intent to commit theft or a felony
- 720 ILCS 5/21-1: Criminal Damage To Property – when a person knowingly damages someone else’s property
- 720 ILCS 5/17-3: Forgery – when someone makes, alters, possesses, issues, or delivers a false document with the intent to defraud
- 720 ILCS 5/16-25: Retail Theft / Shoplifting – when a person takes, alters, or hides merchandise with the intent of depriving the merchant
- 720 ILCS 5/16-1, 720 ILCS 5/16-2, 720 ILCS 5/16-3: Theft – when a person obtains someone else’s property without their authorization or permission
Part D covers offenses affecting public health, safety, and decency such as deadly weapons, disorderly conduct, harassment, gambling, bribery, and terrorism.
- 720 ILCS 5/26-1: Disorderly Conduct – when a person commits an act that disturbs others and breaches the peace
- 720 ILCS 5/24-1: Unlawful Use of Weapons / UUW – when a person possesses, sells, or manufactures an illegal deadly weapon or intends to use that weapon against another person
Part E covers offenses affecting governmental functions such as treason and interfering with public officers, penal institutions, or judicial procedures.
Part F covers certain aggravated offenses such as armed violence and street gang activity.
There is also 720 ILCS 570, which is the Illinois Controlled Substances Act. It prohibits the illegal possession, use, trafficking, and cultivation of controlled substances or drugs.
Whether you are facing a misdemeanor or a felony, a 720 ILCS charge could be punishable by expensive fines, administrative penalties, or even a prison sentence. Along with the legal punishments, you could also face serious consequences regarding your career, education, relationships, and reputation.
Contact a skilled 720 ILCS defense lawyer with in-depth knowledge of your 720 ILCS charge and you will be able to begin constructing an aggressive defense today.
About the Author:
Andrew M. Weisberg is a former felony prosecutor who now serves as a defense attorney in the greater Chicago area. He has extensive experience in handling all types of criminal cases, from sex offenses and domestic violence to retail theft-related crimes, Murder, and drug crimes.