Kidnapping is an Illinois crime that usually occurs when a perpetrator confines a victim against their will in secret. Although force or the threat of force can be present, it is not necessarily a requirement for this type of offense. And in extraordinary situations, a perpetrator can face charges for aggravated kidnapping instead, assuming their conduct meets any of the enhanced requirements.
How Does Illinois Define Kidnapping?
720 ILCS 5/10-1 furnishes the Illinois definition of kidnapping. A person commits kidnapping under this section if they knowingly:
- Confine a victim against their will in a secretive fashion;
- Use force or the threat of imminent force to take a victim to another location with the intent to confine the victim against their will in a secretive fashion; or
- Employ deceit or enticement to induce a victim to go to another location with the intent to confine the victim against their will in a secretive fashion.
What is the Illinois Penalty for Kidnapping?
Section 10-1 also details the Illinois punishment for kidnapping. Under this section, kidnapping is a Class 2 felony. If convicted, the penalty can include three to seven years in prison and criminal fines up to $25,000.
How Does Illinois Define Aggravated Kidnapping?
720 ILCS 5/10-2 establishes the Illinois definition of aggravated kidnapping. A standard kidnapping offense becomes aggravated kidnapping if the perpetrator also:
- Intends to obtain a ransom from the victim or any other person;
- Takes as a victim a child under the age of 13 or a person with a severe or profound intellectual disability;
- Inflicts great bodily harm or commits another felony at the same time;
- Wears a hood, robe, or mask or otherwise conceals their identity;
- Possesses a dangerous weapon while committing the offense;
- Possesses a firearm while committing the offense;
- Discharges a firearm while committing the offense; or
- Discharges a firearm while committing the offense and causes great bodily harm, permanent disability/disfigurement, or death.
What is the Illinois Penalty for Aggravated Kidnapping?
Section 10-2 also details the Illinois punishment for aggravated kidnapping. Under this section, aggravated kidnapping is a Class X felony. If convicted, the penalty can include six to 30 years in prison and criminal fines up to $25,000.
That being said, certain types of aggravated kidnapping offenses feature enhanced penalties. For example, if an aggravated kidnapping offense involves:
- Firearm Possession — Then the prison sentence increases by 15 years;
- Firearm Discharge — Then the prison sentence increases by 20 years; or
- Firearm Injury/Death — Then the prison sentence increases by 25 years to life.
Do You Need Legal Help?
No matter what the criminal offense is, 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, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by completing an online form.