Edwardsville Criminal Defense Law Blog

Breath tests for drunk driving may be inaccurate

When people in Illinois are suspected of driving under the influence by law enforcement, they could be given a breath test. However, that breath test might not be accurate. According to an investigation by The New York Times, over 30,000 breath tests were dismissed in New Jersey and Massachusetts after a number of problems with them were discovered.

Those problems included devices that were not calibrated correctly and that gave readings 40% higher than they should have been. Some were not maintained correctly while others were simply too old. One had a hole drilled in it after officers felt that it was giving results that were on the low end. Some gave readings that could be disrupted if a person was using a breath mint, and others had programming errors. As part of the investigation, journalists went over thousands of documents and spoke to more than 100 people in law enforcement, law and science among other fields.

Assault and battery charges can come with steep penalties

Most Illinois residents interact with other people on a daily basis. While most of those interactions may be brief and uneventful, some may not go as planned. In fact, you may have found yourself in an unexpected altercation with another person that you were unsure how to handle. Unfortunately, things got physical.

You may not consider yourself a violent person, and the idea of one day facing assault and battery charges may have seemed unfathomable to you. However, that is the exact situation you now face.

Multiple tips lead Alton police to suspected drug house

The Alton Police Department obtained a search warrant for a home at 1130 Riley Ave. after receiving multiple tips from community members about illegal drug activity. With assistance from the Illinois Law Enforcement Alarm System, local officers from the narcotics investigation team entered the property. They arrested a 27-year-old man.

He now faces charges for unlawful delivery of a controlled substance, including two extra charges for allegedly delivering drugs within 500 feet of a church. A judge set his bond at $250,000. Investigators said that they might file more charges against him as they examine evidence seized from the Alton Avenue home.

Ten charged with trafficking cocaine from Texas to Illinois

Illinois authorities recently charged 10 people with drug crimes over their alleged involvement in a drug trafficking ring that shipped cocaine from Texas to Chicago. The charges were announced by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Illinois.

According to media reports, investigators from the Chicago High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program and the Organized Drug Trafficking Task Force executed a search warrant at a stash house in Kenwood. The search allegedly uncovered 14 kilograms of cocaine, 15 guns, approximately $30,000 in diamond jewelry and $215,000 in cash and gold.

Illinois police seize 4 pounds of pot in raid and arrest 5 men

The Orland Park Police Department raided a home on the 13400 block of West Circle Drive. They used flash grenades when entering the home to execute a search warrant as part of a drug investigation. According to the police report, officers seized approximately 4 pounds of cannabis, drug paraphernalia and a small quantity of suspected Xanax. They arrested the homeowner, his son and three roommates. Authorities initially charged them with cannabis possession and intent to deliver.

At the bond hearing for the five men, the judge released three of the suspects due to insufficient reasons to detain them although a 20-year-old man among those released was described as the primary drug dealer. He had been kicked out of the home a month previously but allegedly still continued to sell drugs from the house. For the two others, the judge required that they pay bonds prior to release. One of the renters, a 24-year-old man, allegedly had three glass pipes, $209 in cash, two digital scales and a grinder along with 1.7 grams of cannabis in his room. The judge set his bond at $10,000.

Attempted motorcycle traffic stop leads to flight and two arrests

When law enforcement in Illinois initiates a traffic stop, drivers are expected to comply. If a driver flees, there can be a litany of charges related to that act. In some cases, one incident will result in the arrest of another for separate charges. As a recent example of this, two men are facing allegations with one accused of fleeing police on a motorcycle and another possessing drugs.

A police chase of a motorcycle ended with two men being arrested. It started at shortly before 9 a.m. when a police chief tried to pull over the Honda motorcycle, and the driver fled. Law enforcement chased the motorcycle, and its speed surpassed 80 mph. Since the motorcycle was moving so fast, the chase ended. The police chief was informed that the motorcyclist had pulled in behind a restaurant where the 59-year-old driver of the motorcycle was found.

Man sentenced to nine years in prison for selling cocaine

On Aug. 19, Illinois authorities announced that a Woodstock man recently pleaded guilty to drug possession charges. A judge sentenced him to nine years in the Illinois Department of Corrections as part of a plea agreement.

According to a press release, in early 2018, deputies from the McHenry County Sheriff's Department pulled over the 36-year-old defendant for a traffic violation. During the stop, they searched his vehicle and reportedly found 91.4 grams of cocaine, drug scales, cellphones and $4,500 in cash. As a result of the discovery, police came that the man admitted that he was involved in the illegal purchase and sale of cocaine.

Drug-testing kit may have identified bird droppings as cocaine

Many police departments in Illinois and around the country equip their officers with portable drug-testing kits that are used to determine whether or not substances discovered in the field are illegal drugs. The kits are compact, inexpensive and easy to use, but they have been known to identify benign substances like baking soda and sugar as powerful Schedule I and Schedule II narcotics. Recent media reports suggest that this is what happened recently in South Carolina in a case involving Georgia Southern University starting quarterback Shai Werts.

Werts was pulled over by Saluda County Sheriff's Office deputies on the night of July 31 for speeding, but he was charged with possession of a Schedule II drug after a white substance on the paintwork of his car was identified as cocaine by two portable drug-testing kits. Werts is heard telling the disbelieving deputies on footage recorded by police dashboard cameras that the substance in question was bird droppings, and subsequent testing conducted using more sophisticated methods appears to back him up.

Lying on credit card applications is fraud

You may remember your first credit card. Perhaps you applied for one on a whim when you were in college, and you were thrilled to receive a shiny new card in the mail with a credit limit that begged you to spend. You may have wondered why a credit card company so readily approved you on the meager money you were earning at your campus job.

If you are facing charges of credit card fraud, you may be thinking back to those days of free spending. The information you provided to the credit card company may not have seemed important at the time, but now it may affect your future and the well-being of your family.

6 people arrested for drug possession in Wood River

In late July, Illinois authorities arrested six people during a series of drug busts over a two-day period. The incidents took place in and around Wood River.

According to a press release issued by the Wood River Police Department, officers executed a search warrant at a home on the 300 block of Illinois Street at around 6:50 a.m. on July 24. During the operation, a 43-year-old woman and a 34-year-old man were taken into custody. The woman was charged with unlawful delivery of methamphetamine and held on $50,000 bail. The man was charged with unlawful possession of methamphetamine and held on $25,000 bail.

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