Understanding Class X Felonies in Illinois

Understanding Class X Felonies in Illinois

Criminal Defense Attorney

Understanding Class X Felonies in Illinois

In Illinois, a Class X felony is the most serious crime a resident can commit short of first-degree murder. If found guilty, the defendant cannot be sentenced to probation and can face six (6) to thirty (30) years in jail. In other words, the felony always carries a prison sentence, but the defendant can get probation if the prosecution decides to amend the charges by reducing the original charge to a charge that offers probation.

First-time offenders who don’t have a criminal record may also face a prison sentence if their crimes fall under the Class X category. Under Illinois law, these felonies include:

  • Aggravated kidnapping, criminal sexual assault, battery of a minor, battery with a firearm and vehicle hijacking, arson
  • Home invasion
  • Armed robbery
  • Possession of a controlled substance (such as drugs or prescription drugs) with intent to deliver
  • Predatory sexual assault of a minor

The penalties for a Class X felony are unforgiving. If convicted, the defendant can face at least six (6) years and a maximum of 30 years in prison. In either case, they will also have to pay $25,000 in fines.

Since the prison sentence is non-negotiable, trying to negotiate with the prosecutor during such cases can be a challenge as prosecutors are hired by the State Attorney’s Office.

However, this does not mean it is impossible to do so. With the best defense lawyers, probation is possible. As mentioned before, they can convince the prosecution to reduce the original charge. While this will not eliminate jail time, it can make the defendant eligible for probation in several cases.

These options are possible only if a defendant has a skilled defense attorney on their side who has years of experience fighting against such judgments. Without one, defendants have little chance of making probation if they are found guilty of a Class X felony.

If you are searching for such lawyers, get in touch with the law firm of Michael D. Ettinger & Associates today. Our Palos Heights criminal defense attorneys work with clients throughout Palos Heights, Illinois, and northeastern Illinois by giving them proactive legal counsel that can prevent future disputes. Due to their excellent track record, they also get clients from Cook County and beyond, especially those who want to overcome criminal and civil cases.