Felonies and Misdemeanors

What is a Felony or Misdemeanor Offense in Illinois?

Under Illinois criminal law, Will County or Joliet felonies are significantly more serious offenses than misdemeanors.

Typically, a conviction on a felony charge carries a jail sentence of more than 1 year. For the most serious violent felonies, the sentences are significantly more, and many offenses have mandatory minimum jail sentences.

Will County or Joliet misdemeanor criminal charges are those that have a maximum sentence of 1 year in jail or less, usually with no mandatory minimum jail time for most charges. But you are still at significant risk for a jail sentence for many misdemeanor offenses in Illinois, particularly on a second or greater offense. Felony crimes fall into 5 categories, while misdemeanors are broken into 3 classes.

Felony Penalties in Illinois and Will County, IL

The 5 classes of Illinois felonies are as follows:

Class X Felony

  • Between 6 and 30 years in State Penitentiary; and/or
  • Fine of up to $25,000

Examples: Aggravated criminal sexual assault

Class 1 Felony

  • Between 4 and 15 years in State Penitentiary; and/or
  • Fine of up to $25,000

Examples: Criminal sexual assault, possession of heroin, cocaine, LSD

Class 2 Felony

  • Between 3 and 7 years in State Penitentiary; and/or
  • Fine of up to $25,000

Examples: Arson

Class 3 Felony

  • Between 2 and 5 years in State Penitentiary; and/or
  • Fine of up to $25,000

Examples: Aggravated battery

Class 4 Felony

  • Between 1 and 3 years in State Penitentiary; and/or
  • Fine of up to $25,000

Examples: Aggravated assault, stalking

Note: Sentences for Murder convictions differ from other felony class sentences.

Illinois and will County Misdemeanors Penalties

There are 3 classes of Misdemeanor charges and penalties in Illinois:

Class A Misdemeanor

  • Up to 1 year in Jail; and/or
  • Fine of up to $2,500

Examples: Battery, DUI, possession of marijuana

Class B Misdemeanor

  • Up to 6 months in Jail; and/or
  • Fine of up to $1,500

Examples: Possession of marijuana (2.5-10 grams), harassment

Class C Misdemeanor

  • Up to 30 days in Jail; and/or
  • Fine of up to $1,500.

Examples: Assault, possession of marijuana (under 2.5 grams)

For a true understanding of what you are up against, and what penalties you may face if you plead guilty or are convicted in court of a crime in Will County, Joliet or beyone you need a case evaluation from an Illinois Will County defense attorney. The details matter, and a novice is not likely to understand the important elements of a criminal case, or how a judge is likely to rule or pronounce sentencing in court.

Please call Hamilton & Antonsen, Ltd. at 815.729.9220 or email us for more information or for a free consultation.