Nicolas Gomez Gets His Federal Sentence Reduced!

Chicago Federal Criminal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro filed a Motion in Chicago on behalf of Nicolas Gomez to Reduce his Federal Sentence.  On April 23, 2015, Federal District Court Judge Gary Feinerman reduced Nicolas Gomez’s sentence from 84 months to 67 months.  Congratulations Nicolas! By:  Chicago Federal Criminal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro

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The 7th Circuit Is Not Happy With a Prison Sentence For Marijuana Use

U.S. v. Jesse Smith. No. 14-2223. In 2009 the defendant was sentenced to 24 months in prison, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release, for being a felon in possession of a gun. In October 2013 and in April 2014 his probation officer advised the district court that the defendant had again violated terms of his supervised release both by continuing to use marijuana and by violating rules of the halfway house where he lived for a time …
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Drug Penalties in Illinois

ACCURATE AS OF FEBRUARY 20, 2015 Possession of Methamphetamine’s Weight                              Statute                                                           Class                   Time 0-5 grams                          720 ILCS 646/60(b)(1)                                 Class 3                2-5 years 5-15 grams                        720 ILCS 646/60(b)(2)                                 Class 2                3-7 years 15-100 grams                     720 ILCS 646/60(b)(3)                                 Class 1                4-15 years 100-400 grams                   720 ILCS 646/60(b)(4)                                 Class X                6-30 years 400-900 grams                   720 ILCS 646/60(b)(5)                                 Class X                8-40 years 900+                                 720 ILCS 646/60(b)(6)                                 Class X                10-50 years Possession of Methamphetamines with Intent to Deliver 0-5 grams                        720 ILCS 646/55(a)(2)(A)                            Class 2  …
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Motion to Reconsider Sentence Does NOT Stop Appeal Filing Deadlines

United States v. Townsend. No. 13-2677. Background. Louis Townsend pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm as a felon and was sentenced to 71 months in prison. He challenges his sentence on several grounds, but the government questions whether the appeal is timely. Townsend’s deadline for filing a notice of appeal was July 22, 2013. On July 17 he filed a motion titled “Defendant Louis Townsend’s Motion to Reconsider His Sentence.”

Posted in 7th Circuit Criminal Law Alert, News, Press Releases

Honest Services Fraud: Use of Word “Reward” In Jury Instruction Leads to Reversal

USA v. Thomas Hawkins and John W. Racasi,  No. 14-1892 & 14-1908.Thomas Hawkins and John Racasi were employed as analysts on the staff of Larry Rogers, a member of the Cook County Board of Review, when they accepted money from Ali Haleem, a corrupt Chicago police officer acting as an undercover agent. The Board of Review hears complaints by property owners who believe that the assessed valuation (which affects real-estate taxes) is excessive. Haleem paid Hawkins and Racasi to arrange …
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Posted in 7th Circuit Criminal Law Alert, Press Releases

Supervised Release Is Not Mandatory: New Rules Regarding Non Mandatory Conditions

United States v. Thompson, et al., No. 14-1316   In considering four consolidated cases, the Court of Appeals held that district court’s must consider the § 3553(a) factors when imposing all non-mandatory conditions of supervised release, including standard conditions of supervised release. Supervised release, in contrast to parole, consists of restrictions, imposed by the judge at sentencing, called conditions or terms of supervised release, that are to take effect when the defendant is released from prison and continue for a specified …
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Chicago Federal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro Success at Dirksen

Success at Dirksen Building. Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro fought tooth and nail against the government’s Petition for Preliminary Order of Forfeiture. The petition sought proceeds and specific property including substitute assets. The Judge listened to Mr. Petro’s arguments and dismissed the government’s petition. Savings to client $550K! By Chicago Federal Criminal Defense Attorney Michael J. Petro

Posted in 7th Circuit Criminal Law Alert, Press Releases

Police Use of Lethal Force: Boilerplate Rules

Plumhoff v Rickard.     134 S,Ct. 2012 Near midnight on July 18, 2004, Lieutenant Joseph Forthman of the West Memphis, Arkansas, Police Department pulled over a white Honda Accord because the car had only one operating headlight. Donald Rickard was the driver of the Accord, and Kelly Allen was in the passenger seat. Forthman noticed an indentation, “`roughly the size of a head or a basketball’” in the windshield of the car. He asked Rickard if he had been drinking, and …
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Posted in 7th Circuit Criminal Law Alert

USSG 2D1.1: Court’s Failure to Explicitly State Drug Quantity Leads to Reversal

United States v. Garrett.    No. 13-1182.  Background. Dwayne Garrett was found guilty of possessing with intent to distribute 50 or more grams of crack cocaine and sentenced to 190 months in prison. He appeals both his conviction and sentence. Garrett was indicted, along with more than two dozen co-defendants, and charged with possession with intent to distribute 50 or more grams of crack cocaine and using a cell phone in furtherance of that crime. For the conviction of possession with …
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Pro Se Representation: Boilerplate Rules

United States v. Daniel T. Lee.   No. 13-1976 The defendant was convicted by a jury of having committed, along with another man, four drug-related robberies of pharmacies in Milwaukee, and also of having used a firearm in connection with the robberies and having possessed a controlled substance with intent to distribute it. He was sentenced to 780 months in prison. He represented himself at trial and on appeal as well. His principal ground of appeal is that he was denied …
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Posted in 7th Circuit Criminal Law Alert