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To all persons known as Defendants who are confined or wait pending trial:

Every person accused of an offense shall have the right to a trial by jury unless (i) understandingly waived by defendant in open court or (ii) the offense is an ordinance violation punishable by fine only and the defendant either fails to file a demand for a trial by jury at the time of entering his or her plea of not guilty or fails to pay to the clerk of the circuit court at the time of entering his or her plea of not guilty any jury fee required to be paid to the clerk.

Before any person is tried for the commission on an offense he shall be called into open court, informed of the charge against him, and called upon to plead thereto. If the defendant so requests the formal charge shall be read to him before he is required to plead. An entry of the arraignment shall be made of record.

(a) Every person charged with an offense shall be allowed counsel before pleading to the charge. If the defendant desires counsel and has been unable to obtain same before arraignment the court shall recess court or continue the cause for a reasonable time to permit defendant to obtain counsel and consult with him before pleading to the charge. If the accused is a dissolved corporation, and is not represented by counsel, the court may, in the interest of justice, appoint as counsel a licensed attorney of this State.

(b) In all cases, except where the penalty is a fine only, if the court determines that the defendant is indigent and desires counsel, the Public Defender shall be appointed as counsel. If there is no Public Defender in the county or if the defendant requests counsel other than the Public Defender and the court finds that the rights of the defendant will be prejudiced by the appointment of the Public Defender, the court shall appoint as counsel a licensed attorney at law of this State, except that in a county having a population of 1,000,000 or more the Public Defender shall be appointed as counsel in all misdemeanor cases where the defendant is indigent and desires counsel unless the case involves multiple defendants, in which case the court may appoint counsel other than the Public Defender for the additional defendants. The court shall require an affidavit signed by any defendant who requests court-appointed counsel. Such affidavit shall be in the form established by the Supreme Court containing sufficient information to ascertain the assets and liabilities of that defendant. The Court may direct the Clerk of the Circuit Court to assist the defendant in the completion of the affidavit. Any person who knowingly files such affidavit containing false information concerning his assets and liabilities shall be liable to the county where the case, in which such false affidavit is filed, is pending for the reasonable value of the services rendered by the Public Defender or other court-appointed counsel in the case to the extent that such services were unjustly or falsely procured.

(a) When called upon to plead at arraignment the defendant shall be furnished with a copy of the charge and shall plead guilty, guilty but mentally ill, or not guilty.

(b) If the defendant stands mute a plea of not guilty shall be entered for him and the trial shall proceed on such plea.

(c) If the defendant pleads guilty such plea shall not be accepted until the court shall have fully explained to the defendant the consequences of such plea and the maximum penalty provided by law for the offense which may be imposed by the court. After such explanation if the defendant understandingly persists in his plea it shall be accepted by the court and recorded.

(d) If the defendant pleads guilty but mentally ill, the court shall not accept such a plea until the defendant has undergone examination by a clinical psychologist or psychiatrist and the judge has examined the psychiatric or psychological report or reports, held a hearing on the issue of the defendant’s mental condition and is satisfied that there is a factual basis that the defendant was mentally ill at the time of the offense to which the plea is entered.

(e) If a defendant pleads not guilty, the court shall advise him at that time or at any later court date on which he is present that if he escapes from custody or is released on bond and fails to appear in court when required by the court that his failure to appear would constitute a waiver of his right to confront the witnesses against him and trial could proceed in his absence.

All prosecutions except on a plea of guilty or guilty but mentally ill shall be tried by the court and a jury unless the defendant waives such jury trial in writing or, in a criminal prosecution where the offense charged is first degree murder, a Class X felony, criminal sexual assault or a felony violation of the Cannabis Control Act or the Illinois Controlled Substance Act both the State and the Defendant waive such jury trial in writing.

Defendant’s Rights Poster

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