Dupage County Lawyers
 

Kidnapping

Kidnapping and aggravated kidnapping are serious felonies that are harshly punished under Illinois law. If the kidnapped person is transported across state lines, federal charges kick in as well. 

Since kidnapping can involve additional criminal acts such as burglary, rape, and murder, the courts will strive to impose the most extensive punishment, including life imprisonment. Anyone accused of these crimes needs the best legal assistance possible.

The experienced and seasoned Illinois kidnapping attorneys at Wolfe & Stec, Ltd., understand the seriousness of your situation and offer aggressive representation for clients facing kidnapping charges.  We know the courts and the criminal justice system, and how to plea bargain, negotiate guidelines and recognize when to take your case to trial.  We offer a free consultation to examine the facts of your individual situation and determine the best path to protect your rights and your freedom.  Time is of the essence in building your defense, so contact us today at 630-305-0222 to start getting help.

What is Kidnapping in Illinois?

Illinois law (720 ILCS 5/10-1) defines kidnapping as when:

A person knowingly and secretly confines a victim against his or her will by using force or threat of immediate force and moves that person from one place to another, OR uses deceit, fraud, or enticement to persuade another to go from one place to another with intent to secretly confine that other person against his or her will.

There are several types of kidnapping, including: parental kidnapping, kidnapping of strangers or known acquaintances, kidnapping for sexual or human trafficking purposes, and kidnapping for extortion or ransom

Kidnapping for parental purposes is a common occurrence when a divorced spouse who does not have custody takes a child and hides the child from the custodial parent.  Even if the child consented to being taken, it is still considered kidnapping. The law states that if a child under the age of 13 or someone with severe intellectual disability is moved, they can’t legally consent without their parent or legal guardian’s permission. As a result, taking and confining the person will always be considered being against the victim’s will and therefore is a Class 2 felony.

Aggravated Kidnapping

Under Illinois law §720 ILCS 5/10-2, aggravated kidnapping is committing ordinary kidnapping with the addition of other factors, such as use of a firearm. It is an even more serious offense, since there are additional criminal actions involved.

It is considered to be aggravated kidnapping when a person:

  • kidnaps with the intent to obtain ransom from the person kidnapped or any other person
  • kidnaps a victim who is a child under 13 or severely intellectually disabled
  • inflicts great bodily harm, other than by the discharge of a firearm, or commits another felony upon his or her victim
  • wears a hood, robe, or mask or conceals his or her identity
  • kidnaps while armed with a dangerous weapon, other than a firearm, as defined in Section 33A-1 of the Code
  • kidnaps while armed with a firearm
  • during the commission of the offense of kidnapping, person discharges a firearm
  • during the commission of the offense of kidnapping, person discharges a firearm that causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, permanent disfigurement, or death to another person.

Ransom” includes money, benefit, or other valuable thing or concession.

Punishment

A conviction for kidnapping in Illinois will result in a long prison sentence and loss of freedom, especially if there are other charges involved.  The courts tend to pass out severe punishments for kidnapping that are often equal to, if not greater than, murder and armed robbery.

Kidnapping is a Class 2 felony, with punishment in state prison from 3 to 7 years.

Aggravated kidnapping is a Class X offense and is punishable by 6 to 30 years in prison plus an additional 15 to 25 years depending on the section violated and the gravity of the crime. A second aggravated kidnapping conviction carries:

  • A life imprisonment sentence
  • Up to 25,000 in fines, and
  • Restitution to the victim.

Probation is not possible, and 85% of the sentence imposed must be served.

The statute of limitation for kidnapping is three years.

Defending Kidnapping Charges

If you have been accused of kidnapping, the severity of these charges means conviction will be devastating to the lives of you and your family. You need a knowledgeable and experienced Illinois kidnapping defense attorney to fight for your rights and freedom.

As with any crime, if you are accused of kidnapping you are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in court.  The prosecutor’s job is to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the crime, and it is your defense attorney’s job to cast that doubt based on the individual facts in your case.  You have a right to a jury trial, but you may waive this right and have a trial before a judge, and your attorney will help you determine what is best for you.

If there is a trial, all admissible facts must be fairly considered by the judge or jury to make the determination of guilt or innocence. Remember, you and your attorney do not have to prove that you are innocent; you need to create the existence of reasonable doubt.

Put Your Trust In Us — Contact Wolfe & Stec, Ltd. for a Free Consultation.

When you are accused of kidnapping in Illinois, you need to hire the best criminal defense attorney that you can find.  The criminal defense lawyers at Wolfe & Stec, Ltd. are skilled trial lawyers who believe each case is unique, with its own set of circumstances. We examine the facts, the individuals involved, and the evidence available, and work hand in hand with our clients throughout the criminal process to develop an effective defense strategy. Our goal is always to minimize the negative impact of the situation and to focus on protecting your freedoms, liberties and rights.

We are aggressive litigators and will work with you to answer all your questions and make sure you fully understand the facts surrounding your case.  We represent clients in DuPage County, Naperville, Aurora, Wheaton, Downers Grove and Bolingbrook, and the greater Chicagoland area.

Delaying can only make your situation worse, so call 630-305-0222 today to schedule your free initial consultation.

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