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WHAT IS COURT SUPERVISION?

Court Supervision is a sentencing disposition which may follow a guilty plea or a finding of guilt after trial. Court Supervision, if received and successfully completed, means that you will not have a record of conviction on the charge. The concept of Court Supervision is like a continuance, pending the defendant's good conduct, with dismissal of the charges upon acceptable compliance. If the conditions are complied with, the conviction does not become a part of your record.

WHAT CHARGES PERMIT THE IMPOSITION OF COURT SUPERVISION?

Court Supervision is potentially available in all traffic cases, petty offense cases and most misdemeanors. Court Supervision is not available in felony matters.

CRITERIA FOR GRANTING COURT SUPERVISION

In deciding whether to grant Court Supervision, judges look to the following factors:

* Circumstance of the offense -- the more serious the offense, the less likely Court Supervision will be granted. Were others put in danger? Injuries to property or persons?

* Character and condition of the defendant -- a substantial prior record of convictions generally works against the granting of leniency. Prior use of Court Supervision by the defendant negates the likelihood of a second or a third bite at the Court Supervision apple.

* Defendant unlikely to commit further offenses -- a substantial prior record is suggestive of a disposition to commit further offenses. A casual, rude, or cavalier attitude toward the judicial process and the offense itself may be used to deny Court Supervision.

* The defendant and the public would be best served if the defendant were not to receive a criminal record.

* The best interests of justice are served -- this is an inherently vague standard. If a grant of Court Supervision unduly deprecates the seriousness of the offense, Court Supervision is much less likely, e.g., drunk driving is very serious, thus Court Supervision is rare in drunk driving cases. A mere increase in insurance rates or even loss of insurance generally is not a very persuasive argument for receiving Court Supervision.

It is clear there is no absolute right to Court Supervision. The Court exercises its discretion by examining the foregoing factors. Never assume that you can receive Court Supervision by merely asking for it.

INCIDENTS AND CONDITIONS OF COURT SUPERVISION

Illinois law permits a wide range of conditions which the court may impose as part of an order granting Court Supervision. The law states:

a) When a defendant is placed on supervision, the court shall enter an order for supervision, specifying the period of such supervision, and shall defer further proceedings in the case until the conclusion of the period.

b) The period of supervision shall be reasonable under all of the circumstances of the case, but may not be longer than 2 years.

c) The court may in addition to other reasonable conditions relating to the nature of the offense or the rehabilitation of the defendant as determined for each defendant in the proper discretion of the court require that the person:

1. Make a report to and appear in person before or participate with the court or such courts, person, or social service agency as directed by the court in the order of supervision;

2. pay a fine and costs;

3. work or pursue a course of study or vocational training;

4, undergo medical, psychological, or psychiatric treatment; or treatment for drug addiction or alcoholism;

5. attend or reside in a facility established for the instruction or residence or defendants on probation;

6. support his dependants;

7. refrain from possessing a fire-arm or other dangerous weapon;

8. and in addition, if a minor:
i) reside with his parents or in a foster home;
ii) attend school;
iii) attend a non-residential program for youth;
iv) contribute to his own support at home or in a foster home; and

9. make restitution or reparation in an amount not to exceed actual loss or damage to property and pecuniary loss. The court shall determine the amount and conditions of payment;

10. perform some reasonable public or community service;

11. comply with the terms and conditions of an order of pro- tection iddued by the court pursuant to the Illinois Domestic Violence Act of 1986, as now or hereafter amended. If the court has ordered the defendant to make a report snd appear in person under paragraph (1) of this subsection, a copy of the order of protection shall be transmitted to the person or agency so designated by the court;

12. reimburse any "local anti-crime program" as defined in Section 7 of "An Act creating the Illinois Anti-Crime Advisory Council," approved September 24, 1983, as amended, for any reasonable expense incurred by the program on the offender's case, not to exceed the maximum amount of the fine authorized for the offense for which the defendant was sentenced;

13. contribute a resonable sum of money, not to exceed the maximum amount of the fine authorized for the offense for which the defendant was sentenced, to a "local anti-crime program," as defined in Section 7 of "An Act creating the Illinois Anti-Crime Advisory Council," approved September 24, 1983, as amended.

d) The court shall defer entering any judgment on the charges until the conclusion of the supervision.

e) At the conclusion of the period of supervision, if the court determines that the defendant has successfully complied with all the conditions of supervision, the court shall discharge the defendant and enter a judgment dismissing the charges.

f) Discharge and dismissal upon a successful conclusion of a disposition of supervision shall be deemed without adjudication of guilt and shall not be termed a conviction for purposes of disqualification or disabilities imposed by law upon conviction of a crime. Two years after the discharge and dismissal under this Section, unless such conviction was for violation of Section 11-501 of the Illinois Vehicle Code or a similar provision of a local ordinance in which case it shall be 5 years after discharge and dismissal, a person may have his record of arrest expunged as may be provided by law. However, any defendant placed on supervision before January 1, 1980, may move for expungement of his arrest record, as provided by law, at any time after discharge and dismissal under this Section.

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