Springfield Law Enforcement Busts Massive Marijuana Operation

Springfield law enforcement officers busted a massive marijuana operation, according to an article by The State Journal-Register. The perpetrators were using an abandoned warehouse in Springfield for marijuana trafficking.

Springfield law enforcement conducted surveillance on the abandoned warehouse since the summer, when they received a tip about illegal activities. After raiding the warehouse, law enforcement discovered approximately 950 marijuana plants and high-tech equipment for growing marijuana.

In busting up this marijuana trafficking ring, Springfield police charged two men with various criminal offenses. Both men face charges for manufacture and delivery and possession of marijuana as well as conspiracy. One man also faces criminal weapons charges. Both men are presently in Sangamon County Jail with bail set at $200,000 each.

Considering the impact of this current events story, a refresher course on Illinois laws and penalties for marijuana trafficking seems to be in order.

What is the Illinois Approach [...]

The Never-Ending Prison Sentence for Sex Offenders in Illinois

Illinois law makes it extremely difficult for certain sex offenders to leave prison, even after serving their entire sentences, according to an article by Peoria Public Radio. Stringent parole requirements have forced several offenders to stay in prison beyond their sentences with very little hope for release.

A Rockford, Illinois man is among those caught in this never-ending cycle. The Rockford man served his six-year sentence for aggravated criminal sexual assault. Parole requirements only allow for the man’s release if he secures appropriate housing. In this man’s case, he must find housing that is disconnected from the Internet and a certain distance from any schools, parks, or other locations where children gather.

Unable to afford housing on his own, the Rockford man asked his family for help. His family members were either too close to children or unable to remove Internet connectivity. As a result, the Rockford man [...]

Illinois Doctors Petition to Solve Opioid Crisis with Medical Marijuana

Several Illinois doctors have banded together to form Physicians Against Injurious Narcotics (PAIN) to advocate for the replacement of opioids with marijuana, according to an article by the Chicago Tribune.

The PAIN doctors have seen the devastating effects of prescribing opioids for pain. They also cited data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, indicating that 40 people die each day from opioid medications. This is the type of danger that has Illinois and federal health officials warning of a public emergency.

Specifically, the PAIN doctors have thrown their collective weight behind new legislation in Illinois. The premise is simple; give patients a choice. For any patient qualified to receive opioid medication, the PAIN doctors feel that medical marijuana should be provided as an option as well.

At this point in time, Illinois law allows certain patients to use medical marijuana. But the program is strict, [...]

Examining Crime Data from Uniform Crime Reporting Program

Today we will examine statistics from the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) system concerning various crimes. Managed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the UCR provides a centralized depository for crime statistics across the United States.

Starting in 1930, the FBI took responsibility for collecting and publishing UCR crime data. Today, the UCR system collects data from more than 18,000 sources, including cities, academic institutions, states, tribes, and federal agencies.

At this point in time, the FBI has published UCR crime data for 2015 and 2016. The FBI divides UCR data divides crimes into two major buckets. Violent crime includes murder and manslaughter, two definitions of rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. Property crime includes burglary, larceny, and motor vehicle theft.

In examining UCR data for Illinois from 2015 and 2016, we will look at both the totals and the rate per 100,000 people. [...]