People v. Casas, 2016 IL App (2d) 150456 (April). Episode 166 (Duration 6:39)
Does the statute of limitations bar a charge of violation of bail bond when defendant is apprehended 18 years later?
No it doesn’t.
See also the Illinois Supreme Court ruling on this case.
Defendant was on the lamb for 18 years for a drug case. He came back and was arrested, sentenced to 20 years on the drug thing, and then charged with violation of his 1996 bail bond. 720 ILCS 5/32-10(a).
Statute of Limitations
Most felony offenses must be charged “within 3 years after the commission of the offense.” 720 ILCS 5/3-5(b).
Continuing offenses toll the three-year limitations period as follows:
When an offense is based on a series of acts performed at different times, the period of limitation prescribed by this Article starts at the time when the last such act is committed.” 720 ILCS 5/3-8.
The Case Law
People v. Grogan
People v. Grogan, 197 Ill. App. 3d 18 (1st Dist. 1990) said that violation of bail bond is not a continuing offense.
People v. Miller
People v. Miller, 157 Ill. App. 3d 43, 46 (1987) said that escape is a continuing offense.
According to the State, the limitations period was tolled when the offense was initially committed, and began to run once defendant was taken into custody.
This court said that the legislature intended that, like escape, violation of bail bond would be treated as a continuing offense.
Like escape, wherever else the bail-bond offender is, he is not where he is lawfully supposed to be; he has breached his lawful custody. People v. Grogan, 197 Ill. App. 3d 18 (1st Dist. 1990) was wrong.
Any other ruling would give defendant an unmerited windfall in that it would encourage a defendant “to remain in hiding until the three-year statute of limitations had expired” and the underlying case itself could be weakened.