Skelton & Wong, P.C. Bloomington, Illinois Criminal Defense Attorneys
We work to win. Make us a part of your team.
Skelton & Wong, P.C. is a premier criminal defense whose lawyers excel in out-of-court negotiations and trial proceedings. Our attorneys bring more than 50 years of combined experience to bear on even the most complex cases. Our firm's lawyers have successfully fought and won well over 600 cases at all stages and levels of litigation in state, federal, municipal, district and appellate courts. Our aggressive approach has earned us a reputation in the Illinois legal community as tenacious legal advocates who know the law and get results. We are capable trial lawyers who are relentless in the pursuit of just results. Our energetic and talented team of lawyers and support staff welcomes the opportunity to stand in your corner as part of your legal team. Give us a call at 309.820.9599 or contact us online to retain our services or to schedule a consultation with our firm.
Why Skelton & Wong, P.C.?
Attorneys with more than 50 years of litigation and trial experience
We pursue victory with logic. As criminal defense attorneys, it is our job to point out to opposing counsel why they cannot win a particular argument. Weaknesses in the opposition's case strengthen your ability to negotiate for a better outcome both in and out of court. Pretrial negotiations and plea bargains hinge on the discovery process, which equips you with the facts and the insight you need to negotiate for a better result without embarking onto the uncertainty of trial. Our attorneys are nothing if not thorough in the pretrial discovery phase.
We're fighters but we fight fair. Integrity is at the core of our legal practice. We have a reputation for our comprehensive knowledge of the law and fearlessness in broaching new issues in criminal defense court. Our clients know that we will do everything we can within ethical and legal bounds to challenge the opposition's case and to win at trial.
Trial is a scary prospect but we make it worth your while. At trial, a judge or jury gets to decide the course of your future, based on a subjective evaluation of the evidence presented. Presenting compelling arguments requires substantive legal knowledge and exceptional trial presentation skill. At Skelton & Wong, P.C., our attorneys stake their reputations on trial ability and welcome the opportunity to put our litigation skill to use in your defense.
We understand the science behind the justice. DNA tests, field sobriety tests, breathalyzers, blood alcohol analysis and other examinations are some of the most common types of scientific proof brought into court to validate the prosecution's case against a criminal defendant. In some cases, lawyers must fight expert with expert hiring independent technicians to verify or disprove the prosecution's findings. Skelton & Wong can help you decide whether and how to challenge the opposition's scientific evidence.
Personal attention is the touchstone of our practice. Your legal issue is as important to us as it is to you. Our attorneys work nights and weekends to ensure that each client gets the benefit of thought and preparation in the days and weeks preceding trial. Beyond drafting motions and memoranda, we meet with clients to go over evidence and to contemplate strategy. Our goal is to get you the best possible result in the upcoming trial.
We are accessible via email, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our attorneys know that you can get arrested at inconvenient times early in the morning, or in in the middle of the night. We are committed to being available to you whenever you need us, whether that's late at night or in the middle of a weekend, and remain accessible via email.
301 South Center Street
Bloomington IL 61701
Criminal Defense Attorneys in Bloomington, IL
Attorneys who stand apart from the crowd
Skelton & Wong, P.C. is a law firm dedicated to providing criminal suspects in the state of Illinois with vigorous defense against allegations of criminal conduct. We have successfully fought and won cases involving felony and misdemeanor charges, ranging from white-collar crimes like defamation or fraud to violent crimes involving murder, sexual assault, date rape, statutory rape, drug possession, domestic battery, DUI/traffic charges, juvenile offenses, abuse, neglect, drug possession, possession with the intent to distribute and much more.
Trial experience is what sets our firm apart from other criminal defense firms. Our attorneys have won substantial victories at all stages and levels of litigation, from state to federal courts in the district and appellate levels. In addition, Steven Skelton has achieved major success with high-profile cases involving murder and violent crime. Stephanie M. Wong is a former prosecutor who was responsible for supervision of felony trial attorneys at the McLean County State's Attorney's Office and who was specifically assigned to oversee homicide and sex offense prosecutions. Together, our litigation backgrounds give us unique insights into the criminal defense process insights which we put to use in your defense when you retain our services.
A record of success with reducing charges and eliminating counts
Make no mistake. When you have been arrested and charged with a crime, your reputation, your livelihood and your freedom are on the line. You need a lawyer to advise you of your rights and defend your best interests in the upcoming criminal prosecution.
Experience as defense attorneys has given us in-depth understanding of how the prosecution constructs its case. If the proposed punishment does not fit the crime and a felony conviction is at stake, we can argue for a reduction in charges or leniency on the part of the prosecutor or the sentencing judge.
In many cases, we are able to negotiate with prosecutors to reduce the severity of the charges or eliminate counts of the indictment even before the trial begins. At the pretrial hearing and throughout the trial process, our attorneys are able to file motions to protect your substantive and procedural rights as a criminal defendant. During trial, we present the evidence and argue your case before a judge and/or a jury. If convicted, we can try to persuade a judge to enter a conviction for a lower degree of the offense or to commute a sentence by imposing probation. In addition, if you are acquitted of the charges against you, we can get the record of your arrest expunged (erased) so that the arrest will not affect your credit or your employment prospects.
You should know that your character, your conduct and your criminal history can make all the difference in whether the judge will consider reducing your sentence or being lenient with the judgment. We cannot stress enough how important it is to comport yourself with dignity. It is vital to demonstrate respect to the court officers and the judge. We also recommend that you borrow a suit for court appearances if you do not own one, because appearance matters to both the judge and the jury.
Penalties for criminal offenses in Illinois
Felony offenses in Illinois include any offense for which the penalty of imprisonment in a penitentiary for one year or more is provided. Examples of felony offenses include first-degree murder, (armed) robbery, (residential) burglary, criminal sexual assault, forgery and subsequent offense theft, and driving under the influence. Felonies and misdemeanors are divided into classes based upon the seriousness of the offense. The following is a general description of the penalties within the normal sentencing range. There are certain factors that may increase the range beyond those listed and fines for certain offenses such as those involving controlled substances or cannabis, DUI, or sex-related crimes may be substantially greater. Sentencing structures may look something like this:
-Minimum of 20 years up to natural life
-Other felony offenses
-Class X felony: 6-30 years, up to $250,000 fine
-Class 1 felony: 4-15 years
-Class 2 felony: 3-7 years
-Class 3 felony: 2-5 years
-Class 4 felony: 1-3 years
Misdemeanor offenses are those offenses for which the penalty is less than one year. Examples of misdemeanor offenses include theft, criminal trespass, resisting a peace officer and battery. Misdemeanors are also classified based on their seriousness. For example:
-Types of misdemeanors
-Class A misdemeanor: up to 364 days; up to $2,500 fine
-Class B misdemeanor: up to 6 months; $1,500 fine
-Class C misdemeanor: up to 30 days; $1,500 fine
Stephanie Wong is a former prosecutor in McLean County. She began her legal career in the associate division prosecuting delinquency and abuse/neglect cases charged under the Juvenile Court Act and criminal misdemeanor cases. She was later assigned to the felony division and subsequently appointed chief of that division. She has successfully prosecuted offenders charged with serious felonies including first-degree murder, criminal sexual assault and armed robbery. She has satisfied and exceeded the requirements to be certified as lead counsel on the Capital Litigation Trial Bar.
Ms. Wong has received the LexisNexis Martindale Hubbell prestigious AV rating. An AV certification mark is a tribute to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him/her at the highest level of professional excellence.
Stephanie's background as a prosecutor affords her clients the advantage of representation by an attorney with extensive trial experience and with specialized knowledge of how prosecutors think and prepare for their cases.
She applied the skills she acquired as a prosecutor in the area of domestic litigation in Chicago and Kansas City, Missouri handling custody, and visitation and modification issues.
Her achievements include the following awards and accolades:
-Served as felony chief in McLean County State's Attorney's Office
-Certified as lead counsel in Capital Litigation Trial Bar
-Licensed to practice law in IL and MO
-Successfully tried numerous serious offenses to bench and jury trial, including but not limited to first-degree murder, sexual assault, arson and kidnapping
-Prosecuted offenses under Juvenile Court Act, including juvenile delinquency and abuse/neglect
-Instructor of trial advocacy through Illinois Appellate Prosecutor's Office
-Former member of sex assault task force McLean County
-Lecturer and speaker on sex-related offenses
-In private practice in Chicago and Kansas City, MO, handling litigation in custody and visitation issues