Understanding Illinois’ Felony Murder Rule
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Understanding Illinois’ Felony Murder Rule

Imagine this scenario: you attempt to commit a felony with a group of people. In the commission of this felony, someone in your group is shot and killed by another person. Because of your involvement in the initial felony, you are charged with their murder.
 
Huh? How is that possible? Should you be charged with killing someone when you didn’t do the actual killing?
 
This question is at the heart of Illinois’ controversial felony murder rule. Under this law, a suspect can face murder charges if another person dies while committing certain felonies.
 
But what does this really mean? How has the law been used? Glad you asked.…

Cook County Prosecutors Making Sure Gun Charges Go to Trial
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Cook County Prosecutors Making Sure Gun Charges Go to Trial

More and more, Chicago’s prosecutors are developing a hardline stance against gun crime. They’ve altered their policy for criminal justice to ensure more convictions for those facing weapon charges in Cook County.
 
Their new tactic is simple. In order to secure more convictions for felony gun possession, prosecutors are avoiding preliminary hearings in front of a judge. Instead, they’re opting to have a grand jury approve the charges.
 
During the early stages of a case, either a grand jury or judge can decide if enough probable cause exists to proceed with the trial. Officials from the in state’s attorney’s office explained the reason for their policy shift: while individual judges can prove unpredictable, grand juries almost always side with the prosecution and indict the accused.…