Home invasion is a multifaceted offense under the Illinois Criminal Code. Mirroring aspects of burglary crimes, home invasion typically involves use of force or the threat of force as well as entering another person’s residence. Given the severity and potential for harm associated with this offense, home invasion is one of the most serious felony crimes in Illinois.
How Does Illinois Define Home Invasion?
The Illinois definition of home invasion appears under 720 ILCS 5/19-6. There are two elements to this offense under Illinois law.
The first element of home invasion requires the perpetrator to knowingly:
- Enter the residence of another person, knowing or having a reason to know that people are present;
- Enter another person’s residence and remain there until knowing or having a reason to know that people are present; or
- Gain access to another person’s residence through false representation, knowing or having a reason to know that people are present.
The second element of home invasion requires the perpetrator to also:
- Possess a dangerous weapon, other than a firearm, and use force or the threat of force against any person present at the residence;
- Cause any intentional injury to any person present at the residence;
- Possess a firearm and use force or the threat of force against any person present at the residence;
- Discharge a firearm and use force or the threat of force against any person present at the residence;
- Discharge a firearm and cause great bodily harm, permanent disability/disfigurement, or death to any person present at the residence; or
- Commit criminal sexual assault or criminal sexual abuse against any person present at the residence.
What are the Illinois Penalties for Home Invasion?
The Illinois penalties for home invasion also appear under Section 19-6. At a minimum, this offense usually leads to Class X felony charges. If convicted, the punishment can include criminal fines up to $100,000 and a prison sentence between six and 30 years.
In certain cases, however, the prison sentence for home invasion can increase substantially. If a home invasion offense involved:
- Possession of a Firearm — The prison sentence increases by 15 years;
- Discharge of a Firearm — The prison sentence increases by 20 years; or
- Injury/Death from a Firearm — The prison sentence increases by 25 years to life.
It is important to note that Illinois does not offer probation or conditional discharge for Class X felonies. Upon conviction, Class X felony offenders must serve their sentence.
Do You Need Legal Help?
No matter what the criminal offense, all charges are serious. A sound strategy and an aggressive defense are essential for a positive outcome. To protect your rights in such situations, it is highly advisable to retain legal counsel from an experienced criminal defense attorney.
The Prior Law Firm in Bloomington, Illinois, has proven experience in matters of criminal defense. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact us today for a free consultation. You can reach The Prior Law Firm by phone at (309) 827-4300, email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by completing an online form.