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Archive for the ‘DUI convictions’ tag

Four Commonly Asked Questions About Illinois DUI Law

May 28th, 2018 at 6:00 am

DUI charges, DUI convictions, first DUI, Illinois DUI law, Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorneyBeing faced with a driving under the influence (DUI) charge in Illinois can be scary. You don’t know what to expect or what is going to happen. Ultimately, the best way to prepare is by understanding more about your charges. 

What is a DUI?

Pursuant to Illinois law, an individual who is operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or more can be charged with a DUI. A DUI is not limited to only driving with alcohol in one’s system. A person can be charged with a DUI if he or she is intoxicated by drugs, intoxicating compounds, or methamphetamine is in his or her system.

BAC refers to the ratio of alcohol to the blood in your system. A BAC of .08 makes it illegal in Illinois to operate a motor vehicle. However, this standard only applies to individual over the age of 21, the legal drinking age. A driver under the age of 21 must have a BAC of 0. Any amount over 0 and the individual may face a DUI charge.

Will I Go to Jail?

The punishment, or sentence received, after a finding of guilt, depends on how many DUI convictions a person has on his or her record. The sentencing for a DUI can be fines and court costs, probation, jail time, or a combination of the three.

Because driving under the influence is dangerous, Illinois imposes the potential for strict penalties. Even an individual who is being charged with his or her first DUI faces the potential for jail time. Of course, while there are strict penalties associated with a DUI, it is important to remember that you have the opportunity to present a defense in your case to reduce a sentence or even get a case dismissed.

Will My License Be Suspended?

An individual convicted of a DUI does risk license suspension or revocation. Drivers under the age of 21 who are driving with any amount of alcohol, or other impairing substance, will automatically lose their license. Illinois has a zero tolerance policy for minors drinking and driving.

It is not just drivers under the age of 21 who are at risk of losing their license; anyone who is charged with a DUI risks license suspension or revocation. A driver will automatically face suspension if he or she fails to submit to or complete chemical testing for the DUI. Additionally, conviction of a DUI carries the possible sentence of license suspension.

Do I Need a Lawyer?

Yes. There is no question that a lawyer can help make the process of a DUI charge easier. Dedicated Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorney Christopher M. Cosley is experienced in DUI defense and will present the best case possible under the circumstances. Our office combines years of experience with passion to defend clients. We know what defenses are applicable to your case to help you get you the best outcome possible. Reach out to us today for assistance.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-501

http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/drivers/losepriv.html

Strategies for Prevailing in Your DUI Case

October 20th, 2017 at 11:50 am

DUI case, DUI convictions, DUI offenses, Rolling Meadows criminal law attorneys, DUI defenseGetting convicted of a DUI carries significant ramifications that may adversely affect you for years. A DUI conviction is typically a Class A misdemeanor, meaning you could be ordered to serve up to one year in jail. You could also be required to pay a fine of up to $2,500 with a mandatory minimum fine of $500. In addition, your driver’s license will be suspended for at least one year. And this is all for a first-time offender.

If you have prior DUI convictions on your record, the penalties are even more severe. For example, if this is your third DUI conviction, the charge escalates to a Class 2 felony which means you could be ordered to spend between three and seven years in jail. Also, your driver’s license will be suspended for at least 10 years.

Ways to Prevail Against the Government

If you are charged with a DUI, do not presume that you are going to be found guilty. There are many ways to challenge a DUI charge. For example, your Rolling Meadows DUI defense attorney can investigate whether the police officer who pulled you over followed all proper and necessary protocols and procedures when handling your charges.

The Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects you from being subjected to an unreasonable search and seizure. Hence, a police officer cannot engage in an invasive search of your person or vehicle for no good reason.

In addition, a police officer must have probable cause to pull over your vehicle. Therefore, if you were operating your vehicle in a reasonable manner, traveling at the posted speed limit, and the officer just randomly pulled you over, the arrest and subsequent charge could be challenged due to a lack of reasonable suspicion.

Another way to prevail in court is to challenge the veracity of the evidence the government claims to have against you. This may include impeaching the police officer’s credibility, contesting whether you were even the driver in the vehicle, or emphasizing the fact that you took a field sobriety test and passed.

Are these strategies guaranteed to work? No lawyer can guarantee the outcome of a case. Nevertheless, these strategies highlight the fact that you have ways to take on the government’s charges and prevail in court.

Speak to a Rolling Meadows DUI Defense Attorney Right Away

One of the best ways to enhance your chances of succeeding in court is by contacting a DUI defense lawyer right away. The dedicated Rolling Meadows criminal law attorneys at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley are ready and able to help. We have extensive experience representing people charged with DUI offenses. Contact our office today to schedule a confidential case review.

Source:

http://www.isp.state.il.us/traffic/drnkdriving.cfm

Aggravated DUIs in Illinois

July 24th, 2017 at 7:05 am

aggravated DUIs, DUI convictions, DUI defendants, DUI violation, Rolling Meadows aggravated DUI lawyersAll driving under the influence (DUI) convictions are serious offenses. But, in the eyes of the law, an offender who is caught driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol under certain extreme circumstances is seen as being as being more morally culpable than others, and can therefore be charged with the elevated offense of aggravated driving under the influence (also referred to as felony DUI).

Each state defines aggravated driving under the influence a bit differently. However, here in Illinois, felony driving under the influence is codified under code section 625 ILCS 5/11-501 and, in a nutshell, states that an individual commits an aggravated DUI when he or she is in actual physical control of a vehicle in Illinois while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, intoxicating compounds, or a combination thereof, and any of the following aggravating factors were present:

  • This is the offender’s third or more DUI offense;
  • The offender was driving a school bus with at least one passenger aboard;
  • The offender was involved in an accident resulting in great bodily harm, permanent disability, or disfigurement to another (when driving under the influence was the proximate cause of the injury);
  • The offender was previously convicted of reckless homicide while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or intoxicating compounds;
  • The offender was driving in a 20 mph school zone and was involved in an accident resulting in bodily harm (when driving under the influence was the proximate cause of the injury);
  • The offender was involved in a motor vehicle, all-terrain vehicle, snowmobile, or watercraft accident resulting in the death of another (when driving under the influence was the proximate cause of the injury);
  • The offender was driving with a revoked or suspended license;
  • The offender did not possess a driver’s license or permit;
  • The offender knew, or should have known, that the vehicle they were operating was not covered by a liability insurance policy;
  • The offender was in an accident while transporting a child under the age of 16 who sustained bodily harm (when driving under the influence was the proximate cause of the injury);
  • The offender has at least one prior DUI violation and was transporting a child under the age of 16; or
  • The offender was transporting at least one passenger in a vehicle for hire.

Common Defenses

In order to be convicted of aggravated driving under the influence in Illinois the prosecution must be able to prove that you (1) violated IL’s driving under the influence statute and (2) did so while one or more of the aggravating factors outlined above were present. Therefore, depending on the facts of your particular case of your case, you may be able to assert one or more of the following commonly asserted defenses:

  • The arresting officer lacked reasonable suspicion to stop me;
  • The field sobriety test(s) administered in my case were in some way defective or improperly administered;
  • The arresting officer violated my Miranda Rights;
  • My blood alcohol concentration was rising at the time of my arrest and was actually below the legal limit while I was driving; or
  • None of the aggravating factors listed under code section 625 ILCS 5/11-501 were present at the time of my alleged DUI.

Need Legal Advice? Contact a Local DUI Lawyer

Although DUI defendants are not legally required to retain legal representation, hiring a competent driving under the influence attorney to defend your legal rights is highly recommended, especially if you are facing an aggravated DUI. Here at the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley, our experienced Rolling Meadows aggravated DUI lawyers, led by former lead prosecutor in the DUI division of the IL state courts Chris Cosley, assist clients charged with driving under the influence throughout Chicago and the surrounding suburbs.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/062500050K11-501.htm

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