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Illinois Criminal Code of 1961

Article 33: Official Misconduct

Public officers have a special responsibility to carry out their job correctly as to insure the safety of society. If they fail to do so, there are many situations in which a public officer or public employee can be charged with official misconduct, all of which are described in this portion of Article 33 of the Illinois Criminal Code.

Several of these criminal behaviors include the following: intentionally or recklessly failing to perform any duty, knowingly performing any act forbidden by law, or knowingly accepting any reward for an act unauthorized by law. A convicted defendant forfeits his employment and receives a Class 3 felony on his record.

Similarly, the crime of solicitation misconduct occurs when an employee of the executive branch of State or local government accepts contributions from a business or corporation over which he or she has regulatory authority. This provision attempts to limit the undue influence exerted by the private sector on government. Depending on the nature of the offense, a violation is either a Class A or Class C misdemeanor.

In addition, this section prohibits any police or correctional officer from engaging in gang-related activity. However, a defendant may not be convicted if these acts were performed in an undercover investigation. Otherwise, a violation is a Class 3 felony.

The two final offenses described in this section are interference in the preservation of evidence and public contractor misconduct. The former occurs when anyone acting on behalf of a law enforcement agency fails to follow the legal procedure for preserving evidence and qualifies as a Class 4 felony. In regards to the latter, if a public contractor or a person seeking a public contract uses false records and statements or performs an illegal act, he or she may be found guilty of a felony.

Need an Illinois criminal defense attorney? If you've been charged with official misconduct in Illinois, call our Chicago criminal defense attorneys today at (312) 466-9466 to discuss your case.

The text below comes from Article 33 of the Illinois Criminal Code of 1961. This law may have changed -- please read the important legal disclaimer at the bottom of this page.

Illinois Criminal Code of 1961 - Article 33

Sec. 33-3. Official Misconduct.) A public officer or employee or special government agent commits misconduct when, in his official capacity or capacity as a special government agent, he commits any of the following acts:
    (720 ILCS 5/33-3)

(a) Intentionally or recklessly fails to perform any mandatory duty as required by law; or

(b) Knowingly performs an act which he knows he is forbidden by law to perform; or

(c) With intent to obtain a personal advantage for himself or another, he performs an act in excess of his lawful authority; or

(d) Solicits or knowingly accepts for the performance of any act a fee or reward which he knows is not authorized by law.

A public officer or employee or special government agent convicted of violating any provision of this Section forfeits his office or employment or position as a special government agent. In addition, he commits a Class 3 felony. For purposes of this Section, "special government agent" has the meaning ascribed to it in subsection (l) of Section 4A-101 of the Illinois Governmental Ethics Act. (Source: P.A. 94-338, eff. 1-1-06.)

Sec. 33-3.1. Solicitation misconduct (State government).
    (720 ILCS 5/33-3.1)

(a) An employee of an executive branch constitutional officer commits solicitation misconduct (State government) when, at any time, he or she knowingly solicits or receives contributions, as that term is defined in Section 9-1.4 of the Election Code, from a person engaged in a business or activity over which the person has regulatory authority.

(b) For the purpose of this Section, "employee of an executive branch constitutional officer" means a full-time or part-time salaried employee, full-time or part-time salaried appointee, or any contractual employee of any office, board, commission, agency, department, authority, administrative unit, or corporate outgrowth under the jurisdiction of an executive branch constitutional officer; and "regulatory authority" means having the responsibility to investigate, inspect, license, or enforce regulatory measures necessary to the requirements of any State or federal statute or regulation relating to the business or activity.

(c) An employee of an executive branch constitutional officer, including one who does not have regulatory authority, commits a violation of this Section if that employee knowingly acts in concert with an employee of an executive branch constitutional officer who does have regulatory authority to solicit or receive contributions in violation of this Section.

(d) Solicitation misconduct (State government) is a Class A misdemeanor. An employee of an executive branch constitutional officer convicted of committing solicitation misconduct (State government) forfeits his or her employment.

(e) An employee of an executive branch constitutional officer who is discharged, demoted, suspended, threatened, harassed, or in any other manner discriminated against in the terms and conditions of employment because of lawful acts done by the employee or on behalf of the employee or others in furtherance of the enforcement of this Section shall be entitled to all relief necessary to make the employee whole.

(f) Any person who knowingly makes a false report of solicitation misconduct (State government) to the State Police, the Attorney General, a State's Attorney, or any law enforcement official is guilty of a Class C misdemeanor. (Source: P.A. 92-853, eff. 8-28-02.)

Sec. 33-3.2. Solicitation misconduct (local government).
    (720 ILCS 5/33-3.2)

(a) An employee of a chief executive officer of a local government commits solicitation misconduct (local government) when, at any time, he or she knowingly solicits or receives contributions, as that term is defined in Section 9-1.4 of the Election Code, from a person engaged in a business or activity over which the person has regulatory authority.

(b) For the purpose of this Section, "chief executive officer of a local government" means an executive officer of a county, township or municipal government or any administrative subdivision under jurisdiction of the county, township, or municipal government including but not limited to: chairman or president of a county board or commission, mayor or village president, township supervisor, county executive, municipal manager, assessor, auditor, clerk, coroner, recorder, sheriff or State's Attorney; "employee of a chief executive officer of a local government" means a full-time or part-time salaried employee, full-time or part-time salaried appointee, or any contractual employee of any office, board, commission, agency, department, authority, administrative unit, or corporate outgrowth under the jurisdiction of a chief executive officer of a local government; and "regulatory authority" means having the responsibility to investigate, inspect, license, or enforce regulatory measures necessary to the requirements of any State, local, or federal statute or regulation relating to the business or activity.

(c) An employee of a chief executive officer of a local government, including one who does not have regulatory authority, commits a violation of this Section if that employee knowingly acts in concert with an employee of a chief executive officer of a local government who does have regulatory authority to solicit or receive contributions in violation of this Section.

(d) Solicitation misconduct (local government) is a Class A misdemeanor. An employee of a chief executive officer of a local government convicted of committing solicitation misconduct (local government) forfeits his or her employment.

(e) An employee of a chief executive officer of a local government who is discharged, demoted, suspended, threatened, harassed, or in any other manner discriminated against in the terms and conditions of employment because of lawful acts done by the employee or on behalf of the employee or others in furtherance of the enforcement of this Section shall be entitled to all relief necessary to make the employee whole.

(f) Any person who knowingly makes a false report of solicitation misconduct (local government) to the State Police, the Attorney General, a State's Attorney, or any law enforcement official is guilty of a Class C misdemeanor. (Source: P.A. 92-853, eff. 8-28-02.)

Sec. 33-4. Peace officer or correctional officer; gang-related activity prohibited.
    (720 ILCS 5/33-4)

(a) It is unlawful for a peace officer or correctional officer to knowingly commit any act in furtherance of gang-related activities, except when acting in furtherance of an undercover law enforcement investigation.

(b) In this Section, "gang-related" has the meaning ascribed to it in Section 10 of the Illinois Streetgang Terrorism Omnibus Prevention Act.

(c) Sentence. A violation of this Section is a Class 3 felony. (Source: P.A. 90-131, eff. 1-1-98.)

Sec. 33-5. Preservation of evidence.
    (720 ILCS 5/33-5)

(a) It is unlawful for a law enforcement agency or an agent acting on behalf of the law enforcement agency to intentionally fail to comply with the provisions of subsection (a) of Section 116-4 of the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963.

(b) Sentence. A person who violates this Section is guilty of a Class 4 felony.

(c) For purposes of this Section, "law enforcement agency" has the meaning ascribed to it in subsection (e) of Section 116-4 of the Code of Criminal Procedure of 1963. (Source: P.A. 91-871, eff. 1-1-01; 92-459, eff. 8-22-01.)

Sec. 33-7. Public contractor misconduct.
    (720 ILCS 5/33-7)

(a) A public contractor; a person seeking a public contract on behalf of himself, herself, or another; an employee of a public contractor; or a person seeking a public contract on behalf of himself, herself, or another commits public contractor misconduct when, in the performance of, or in connection with, a contract with the State, a unit of local government, or a school district or in obtaining or seeking to obtain such a contract he or she commits any of the following acts: (1) intentionally or knowingly makes, uses, or causes to be made or used a false record or statement to conceal, avoid, or decrease an obligation to pay or transmit money or property;

(2) knowingly performs an act that he or she knows he or she is forbidden by law to perform;

(3) with intent to obtain a personal advantage for himself, herself, or another, he or she performs an act in excess of his or her contractual responsibility;

(4) solicits or knowingly accepts for the performance of any act a fee or reward that he or she knows is not authorized by law; or

(5) knowingly or intentionally seeks or receives compensation or reimbursement for goods and services he or she purported to deliver or render, but failed to do so pursuant to the terms of the contract, to the unit of State or local government or school district.

(b) Sentence. Any person who violates this Section commits a Class 3 felony. Any person convicted of this offense or a similar offense in any state of the United States which contains the same elements of this offense shall be barred for 10 years from the date of conviction from contracting with, employment by, or holding public office with the State or any unit of local government or school district. No corporation shall be barred as a result of a conviction under this Section of any employee or agent of such corporation if the employee so convicted is no longer employed by the corporation and (1) it has been finally adjudicated not guilty or (2) it demonstrates to the government entity with which it seeks to contract, and that entity finds, that the commission of the offense was neither authorized, requested, commanded, nor performed by a director, officer or high managerial agent on behalf of the corporation as provided in paragraph (2) of subsection (a) of Section 5-4 of this Code.

(c) The Attorney General or the State's Attorney in the county where the principal office of the unit of local government or school district is located may bring a civil action on behalf of any unit of State or local government to recover a civil penalty from any person who knowingly engages in conduct which violates subsection (a) of this Section in treble the amount of the monetary cost to the unit of State or local government or school district involved in the violation. The Attorney General or State's Attorney shall be entitled to recover reasonable attorney's fees as part of the costs assessed to the defendant. This subsection (c) shall in no way limit the ability of any unit of State or local government or school district to recover moneys or damages regarding public contracts under any other law or ordinance. A civil action shall be barred unless the action is commenced within 6 years after the later of (1) the date on which the conduct establishing the cause of action occurred or (2) the date on which the unit of State or local government or school district knew or should have known that the conduct establishing the cause of action occurred.

(d) This amendatory Act of the 96th General Assembly shall not be construed to create a private right of action. (Source: P.A. 96-575, eff. 8-18-09.)

(720 ILCS 5/Tit. III Pt. F heading) PART F. CERTAIN AGGRAVATED OFFENSES

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DISCLAIMER: These excerpts from the law are provided for reference purposes only. Visitors to our Chicago criminal defense lawyer website should be aware that Illinois criminal laws have been amended many times and that Illinois crime laws posted on this site may not be current. In addition, Illinois criminal case law defines precedents for legal determinations that are not defined in the original laws.

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