Laws and Penalties for Theft Crimes in Illinois

Theft is one of the most common crimes in Illinois and across the United States. From grocery stores to museums to apartments and homes, anything of value is a potential target for thieves. Despite elaborate security systems and other devices, property owners always have to worry about theft. That is why Illinois law employs a broad definition of theft crimes as well as a severe punishment scheme.

Definition of Theft in Illinois

The Illinois definition of theft appears in 720 ILCS 5/16-1. There are several different types of this offense, which revolve around possession and unauthorized control. A person commits theft in Illinois if they intentionally:

    Obtain another person’s property without authorization; Exert unauthorized control over another person’s property; Use deception to gain unauthorized control over another person’s property; Employ threats to gain unauthorized control over another person’s property; or Take possession of stolen property, despite knowing or having
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Analyzing Burglary Crimes in Illinois

Burglary is a scary prospect for any home or property owner. Not even the best locks or security systems can keep out determined thieves. That is why Illinois has strict laws against burglary. When a burglar breaks into another person’s property, he or she runs the risk of severe criminal penalties.

Burglary Laws and Penalties

Under 720 ILCS 5/19-1, it is unlawful to knowingly enter another person’s property with the intent to commit theft or another felony. Illinois law specifically includes the following types of properties:

    Aircrafts; Buildings; House trailers; Motor vehicles; Railroad cars; and Water crafts.

The concept of intent is central to burglary in Illinois. It does not matter if the perpetrator actually steals anything. So long as the perpetrator intends to steal something or commit a different felony, burglary laws can apply.

The Illinois penalties for burglary change depending on the circumstances. For example, burglary [...]

Survey of Three Vehicular Crimes in Illinois

Today’s post will take a deep dive into three different vehicular crimes in Illinois. The first section will explore criminal trespass to vehicles, then vehicular hijacking, and finally, Aggravated vehicular hijacking.

Criminal Trespass to Vehicles

Illinois law under 720 ILCS 5/21-2 defines the offense of criminal trespass to vehicles. A person commits criminal trespass to vehicles if he or she knowingly and without legal authority enters or operates another person’s vehicle.

Criminal trespass to vehicles is generally a Class A misdemeanor in Illinois. The usual penalties for this offense include up to 364 days of confinement, $2,500 in fines, and up to 24 months of probation.

Moving past criminal trespass to vehicles, the next section will address vehicular hijacking.

Vehicular Hijacking

Illinois law under 720 ILCS 5/18-3 defines the offense of vehicular hijacking. A person commits vehicular hijacking if they knowingly use force — or the threat of force [...]

Examining Robbery Crimes in Illinois

This blog post will provide an overview of the different types of robbery crimes in Illinois. The following sections will provide definitions and penalties for standard robbery, aggravated robbery, and armed robbery.

Definition of Robbery in Illinois

As underlined in 720 ILCS 5/18-1, robbery is a theft crime. If the perpetrator steals another person’s property using force or threats of force, then it becomes a robbery, though it is important to note that robbery does not apply to the theft of cars or other vehicles. There are separate laws and penalties for car theft.

Penalties for Robbery in Illinois

Under 720 ILCS 5/18-1, robbery is generally a Class 2 felony in Illinois. A Class 2 felony is punishable by up to 84 months in jail, 48 months of probation, and $25,000 in fines.

Under certain circumstances, such as robbery committed at a school or church, robbery can [...]