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Joshua Sachs

Joshua Sachs’s Answers

4,813 total


  • Is it possible or worth it to try to get an appeal I'd you have been locked up 23 years on a murder and have 6 years left?

    Police brutality case. That my fiancee was charged for a murder no money for a paid attorney. And public defender didn't present all evidence. Stated his job was to get the sentence dropped from life to 60 years.

    Joshua’s Answer

    The deadline for initiating an appeal was thirty days from the date of sentencing. The outside deadline for filing a post-conviction petition was three years from date of conviction. Other state collateral remedies have even shorter deadlines or are probably not applicable. The federal habeas corpus deadline is a complicated calculation, but after 23 years it has probably also expired long ago. So on procedural grounds alone your friend is probably out of luck. There are, however, occasionally very old cases on which deadlines have for some unusual reason not expired, or for which some exception to the deadlines can be established. That is very rare, however. I suggest that your friend consult an attorney familiar with Illinois collateral review and federal habeas corpus for a thorough evaluation of his possible remedies. But don't be surprised to have to make a substantial financial investment only to get a disappointing answer in the end.

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  • If I paid walmart civil demand with a check will I be able to cancel the check knowing that they were not suppose to been paid.

    What are my options in fighting this battle with walmart civil demand I paid them off with a check, can I now go back and dispute those charges knowing they were not suppose to been paid

    Joshua’s Answer

    Walmart's civil demand is probably valid under Illinois law, so you assertion that the charges "were not suppose to be paid" is flat out wrong and you would lose your case. If you had not paid it to begin with it is unlikely that Walmart would have sued you because, as a practical matter, it would not have been worth. If you initiate this bogus lawsuit, however, it will be another matter. My suggestion would be, let it lie. You have nothing to gain and perhaps something to lose. The best advice I could give you is to consult an attorney for a serious evaluation of your options. Getting off-the-top-of-the-head responses from an online Q&A forum is not a consultation with an attorney and is not a serious evaluation of your options. Don't rely on what we tell you here unless you don't care about the outcome.

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  • Isn't this sort of a double jeopardy situation?? What can I do?? Could I sue the state of WV??

    I was charged with grand larceny (a felony in WV) back in May/June 2015. I turned myself in as soon as I became aware of the arrest warrant, and I was released on personal recognizance (PR) with a $5,000 bond. I applied for a public defender (PD) ...

    Joshua’s Answer

    Your question is confusing. You start out by telling us, if I understand correctly, that on the advice of your PD you agreed to waive preliminary hearing on a felony charge in the hope, or perhaps with the agreement, that the felony would be dismissed and the charge reduced to a misdemeanor. Then you seem to be complaining because the felony was indeed dismissed and you were charged with a misdemeanor, which was your hope and intention to begin with. Then you seem to say that you pled guilty to the original charge. Not sure what your dissatisfaction is. There is certainly no double jeopardy issue here at all. You were never in jeopardy on the felony because the case was dismissed before jeopardy attached. Remember that in ordinary language, being in jeopardy and being in trouble mean pretty much the same thing. In the law they do not mean the same thing at all. One can be in very serious criminal trouble and still not be in legal jeopardy, which is what seems to have happened to you.

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  • Is smoking weed illegal under Illinois Law or United States federal law?

    Or both?

    Joshua’s Answer

    Federal, Illinois, and often local ordinance as well. As Ms. Goldstein says, there are exceptions, but they are few. Even in those states where marijuana use is permitted under state law, it remains criminal under federal law and can be prosecuted.

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  • How should he approach this when going to court to appeal the child support and go for full custody?

    If the parents of a 12yr haven't been together since he was 1 and.nothing has ever been established with the courts. Just done week on weeknoff and it worked. Now all of a sudden the mother decides to go to court for child custody and not let the ...

    Joshua’s Answer

    This does not sound like an appeal question at all. I agree with my colleagues. Papa needs to hire a lawyer familiar with child custody matters to help him present his side of this dispute to the judge who hears custody cases. If he wants to succeed he must not try to handle this alone.

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  • What is a notice of issuance of mandate?

    My husband was convicted on a charge on 12/19/13. His case history states that a Notice of Issuance of Mandate and Mandate filed on 10/31/14. Just wondering what this is?

    Joshua’s Answer

    Was this a mandate issued by an appellate court after your husband appealed his conviction or sentence? That is what it sounds like.

    In Illinois an appellate court decides an appeal in a written ruling that usually takes one of two forms, either a formal "opinion", which is published for the use of lawyer and judge in other cases, or a "rule 23 order", which is similar to an opinion except that it is not published and therefore cannot be cited in other cases. The difference between an opinion and a rule 23 order is important only to appellate lawyers and appellate court judges. It makes no difference to the people involved in the appeal.

    But the opinion or the rule 23 order is only an explanation of the court's reasoning and a statement of its decision. It is not actually an order putting that decision into effect. Such an order is called a "mandate" and it is issued by the clerk of the appellate court, usually several weeks after the opinion or rule 23 order is entered, and after the time during which the parties can ask the court to reconsider its decision has expired. The mandate is the actual official order putting the court's decision into effect. When the mandate is issued a Notice of Mandate is sent to the parties, telling them that the mandate has gone out and that the decision of the court is final and official.

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  • How does the Walmart shoplifting fine work ?

    I'm 18 and was caught shoplifting a case for my phone at Wal-Mart. The case was only 19.99 after tax it was around 22 dollars I really don't know why I did it and feel dumb. I was stopped right before I left by Walmart security,they took me to a ...

    Joshua’s Answer

    I agree with my colleagues. Just to put your problem in perspective:

    Retail merchants loose a lot of money to shoplifting both directly in stolen goods and indirectly in the substantial additional costs they incur for security. The legislature in virtually every state has passed laws that allow merchants to recoup some of this cost by suing any shoplifter they are able to catch for an amount set by law which is much larger than the value of the goods that the particular shoplifter stole or tried to steal. The idea is that it is only fair that anybody who steals from a store should have to kick in to the kitty to cover at least part of the merchant's shoplifting overhead. People can argue over whether this is fair or wise, but in most states it is the law.

    So Walmart is sending you a letter demanding that you pay something under such a civil liability law. It is mischaracterizing such a payment to call it a fine, which implies that it is a punishment ordered by a court. It is not. Under the law, you do not owe the money, and have no legal obligation to pay it, unless the store sues you in court and wins a judgment against you. For practical reasons, it seldom makes sense for the store to do that, so such suite to enforce the statutory liability are almost never filed.

    Nevertheless, the stores lawyer can send out demand letters and hope that people will just pay them, and no doubt many people do. But if you do not pay the demand it is most unlikely that the store will follow up with a lawsuit. If it does, you can hire a lawyer to defend or settle the civil case.

    There is no connection between civil and criminal liability for shoplifting. You can be prosecuted for retail theft regardless whether or not you pay the demand and regardless whether or not you are sued. And a civil demand can be made, and a civil lawsuit filed, regardless whether or not you are prosecuted.

    My colleagues have given you good advice. If you are worried about this situation, make an appointment to consult an attorney in your county who handles criminal defense matters. That way you will get an individual evaluation and advice, and you will have somebody in your corner ready to step in for you if anything develops.

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  • What explanation should i give in order to not extend my summary suspension?

    I have an MNDP and received a letter asking me to explain a violation of .0730. This is my first violation and i did not blow again until about 3 hours later at which point i was able to start my car. This was early in the morning and i had been d...

    Joshua’s Answer

    To the good advice of my colleagues I will add that just today I happen to have been reading a court transcript in which the judge imposing sentence on a DUI specifically admonished the defendant, "I'll just tell you up front, I don't buy the excuse that there was alcohol in my mouth wash or in my cough syrup." I think you can assume that most judge think just that way. Try that "excuse" and the judge will know not only that you are drinking but that you are lying to the court about it. Do not ever lie to a judge.

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  • If I change my plea in one case, does that also rescind my plea to the other case? The other case had an attempt burglary felony

    I recently made a plea deal in relation to a charge in one case and a charge in another. I pled out to both charges. In one case, it was a resisting arrest charge. In the other case, it was brought down to a misdemeanor, which was trespassing to s...

    Joshua’s Answer

    That would depend on the grounds on which you seek to withdraw your plea, on the relief that you request in your motion for leave to withdraw, and on the judge's order ruling on your motion. You definitely need a lawyer to advise you and to handle this matter. A motion for leave to withdraw a plea of guilty is a very dangerous kind of motion to file. If your motion is denied there is no harm done, but if you succeed you are setting the case back to square one, any charges dismissed as part of the plea agreement are reinstated, you are once again looking at any sentence all the way up to the maximum, and it very unlikely that you will be able to make another deal, let alone a better one.

    So review the situation carefully with your attorney and be very, very certain that you want to do this before you go ahead.

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