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How to File a Motion to Suppress Evidence: Illinoi

Challenging Evidence Obtained in Illinois

Are you facing criminal charges in Illinois based on evidence obtained illegally by the police or another law enforcement agency? In such a situation, you may be able to exclude such evidence from the court proceedings, consequently weakening the prosecution’s case against you. This is possible through a legal procedure called a motion to suppress evidence.

A motion to suppress evidence is a formal request to exclude the use of particular evidence during a trial. This request is based on the assertion that such evidence was obtained in violation of your constitutional rights, including:

  • Right against unreasonable searches and seizures under the Fourth Amendment.

  • Right against self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment.

  • Right to counsel under the Sixth Amendment.

Suppose you file a motion to suppress evidence illegally seized, and the judge grants it. In such a case, the prosecution will no longer be able to use the suppressed evidence to prove your guilt, significantly impacting the outcome of your case. It may result in a dismissal, a reduction of charges, or a favorable plea deal.

A solid legal argument and supporting evidence are essential to win a suppression of motion case. This is where you may consider enlisting the help of an experienced Illinois criminal defense lawyer. Attorneys from the Hirsch Law Group can help you!

Common Grounds for Filing a Motion to Suppress Evidence

As per Illinois law enshrined in 725 ILCS 5/114-12, a motion to suppress illegally seized evidence can be filed on the following grounds:

Unlawful Search and Seizure Without a Warrant: If the search and seizure were conducted without a proper warrant and violated the defendant’s constitutional rights, it could be deemed illegal. Any evidence seized by a police officer in such a manner is inadmissible in court.

Illegal Search and Seizure With a Warrant: Even when a warrant is involved, it can still be considered illegal for several reasons. This includes situations where the warrant is insufficient on its face (meaning it lacks essential details), the seized evidence doesn’t match what the warrant authorized, there was no probable cause to issue the warrant in the first place, or the warrant was executed unlawfully.

Some examples of unreasonable search and inadmissible evidence include evidence that was:

  • Illegally seized during a warrantless search incident.

  • Obtained after an unlawful arrest or detention without probable cause.

  • Obtained through unlawful electronic eavesdropping, such as wiretapping, recording, or surveillance.

  • Obtained through coercion, intimidation, deception, or violation of Miranda rights.

  • Obtained through an invalid search/arrest warrant.

Chain of Custody Issues

A peace officer must follow proper procedures when handling evidence right from its collection until presented in court. If there are any irregularities, the court may suppress it. The irregularities include mishandling, mislabeling, or contamination with evidence from unrelated cases.

Other Grounds

Other grounds for filing a motion to suppress evidence include:

  • Non-Compliance With Field Sobriety Test Standards: For instance, when a peace officer obtains evidence from improperly conducted field sobriety tests that violate the standards set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

  • Contaminated DUI or Drug Test Evidence: If evidence related to DUI or drug tests has been compromised during:

    • Testing

    • Handling

    • Labeling

    • Transport

    • Storage

  • Faulty Breathalyzer Tests: If breathalyzer tests are inaccurate. This could be due to improper maintenance or malfunction of the testing device.

  • Invalid or Vague Arrest Warrants: If an arrest warrant obtained is invalid. Or if they lack the necessary specificity.

How to File a Motion to Suppress Evidence in Illinois

You can prevent the prosecution from using certain evidence against you at trial. Here are the steps to file a motion to suppress evidence effectively.

  • Building a Persuasive Case: Build a persuasive case that supports your motion. This involves:

    • Gathering Factual Information: A lawyer from the Hirsch Law Group can help you collect all the relevant facts pertaining to the evidence in question. This includes how, when, where, and by whom it was obtained.

    • Applying Applicable Laws: We can demonstrate that the evidence was obtained unlawfully or improperly by applying specific legal principles, including case laws and state or federal rules.

  • Drafting: The next step is to draft a persuasive motion with sound legal analysis and reasoning. This document serves as the foundation for your case and will explain why the evidence should be suppressed.

  • Filing the Motion: File a legal motion with the court that explains why the evidence should be suppressed. We can prepare and submit this motion on your behalf.

  • Prosecution Response: The fourth step involves receiving and responding to the prosecution’s counterarguments. The prosecution may challenge your motion by presenting their legal reasoning and evidence.

  • Motion Hearing: Attend a motion hearing if the court schedules one. During this hearing, each party will present their arguments. The judge may ask questions or request additional information from either side.

  • Judicial Ruling: The final step is to receive the judge’s ruling based on the arguments presented. The judge will decide whether the evidence should be suppressed or allowed in the trial. The judge’s ruling may affect the outcome of your case.

Reach Out to the Hirsch Law Group Today!

A motion to suppress evidence can help you defend yourself against criminal charges. However, filing and arguing a motion to suppress evidence in Illinois is complex. Consider seeking the help of a skilled criminal defense lawyer from the Hirsch Law Group! We have the knowledge and experience to handle this complex procedure.

We can help you with a motion to suppress evidence in Illinois by:

  • Reviewing your case and evaluating the evidence discovered by the law enforcement officer to identify if it was obtained unlawfully.

  • Researching and applying the relevant laws and precedents.

  • Drafting and filing a persuasive motion to suppress evidence in the court.

  • Responding to the prosecution’s counterarguments.

  • Negotiating with the prosecution for a plea bargain.

Do you have questions about the motion to suppress evidence? At the Hirsch Law Group, we represent clients facing criminal charges and know how to identify and challenge any violations of your rights. Our lawyers can offer you effective defense against criminal cases, including gun charges in Illinois. Call us today to schedule a free consultation!