The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola

CALL FOR A FREE CONSULTATION

47 DuPage Court, Elgin, IL 60120

847-488-0889

Posted on in DUI

b2ap3_thumbnail_DUI_20191014-235658_1.jpgIt is always a scary feeling to see red and blue flashing lights in your rear-view mirror, especially if you know you’ve had a few drinks before getting behind the wheel. A lot of people think that they will be arrested for a DUI offense if they have a blood alcohol content (BAC) over the legal limit and so they refuse the necessary tests during the traffic stop.

It is within a person’s rights to refuse the breathalyzer test and the typical field sobriety test during the traffic stop, however, that would result in an automatic one-year suspension of a driver’s license and a possible arrest where the test will be administered at the police station.

However, an arrest is not usually made unless the officer knows for sure that a driver is drunk. How do they figure that out without a chemical or field sobriety test? They observe a driver’s behavior, movements, smells, and use techniques to properly determine the sobriety.

Driver Interview Process

A police officer starts observing drunken behavior before he/she even stops the vehicle. They look for signs such as swerving, uncontrolled braking or accelerating, and delayed reactions which could be evidence of driver drunkenness.

Then, they will perform a traffic stop to assess the status of the driver. The officer will sometimes not ask for the driver to get out of the car at first, but instead, they will conduct a driver interview. During this time, an officer will:

  • Look for signs of drunkenness: slurred speech, glossy eyes, alcohol smells.
  • Ask difficult questions or ask a driver for multiple documents at the same time.
  • Observe the motor skills of the driver. Whether or not they are fumbling for documents.
  • Ask questions while a driver is looking for their license to see how easily distracted the driver becomes.
  • Ask the driver to recite part of the alphabet or answer questions they would normally be able to answer.
  • Ask the driver to count down from 15 to 1.
  • Ask the driver to verify how many fingers the officer is holding up.

Depending upon the answers of the driver and the observations the officer collects, the officer will then ask the driver to exit the vehicle for a field sobriety test.

Typical Field Sobriety Test

It is within a driver’s rights to not perform a field sobriety test, but if the officer already has clear evidence of drunkenness, they can still perform an arrest without a test.

If a driver does accept the field sobriety test, there are three general exams the officer will ask the driver to perform:

  • Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus: the officer will have the driver follow their finger with only their eyes. If the driver moves their head or has a “jerky” response in their eyes, they fail the test.
  • Walk-And-Turn: the officer will ask the driver to walk in a straight line for a number of steps, turn, and walk back the same amount of steps. If the driver has to use their arms for balance, makes an improper turn, stumbles, or cannot walk in a straight line, they fail the test.
  • One-Leg Stand: the officer will ask the driver to raise one foot off the ground with their arms at their sides. Then, the driver will count up from 1,000 until told to stop. If the driver falls over, uses their arms for balance, or cannot count, they fail the test.

Officers will fully explain and demonstrate each test before they ask the driver to perform the actions. If the driver does not follow the directions completely, they will fail the field sobriety test.

Often people refuse the field sobriety test because they can be inaccurate depending on the conditions of the road or the physical ability of the driver. Those who are unable to lift a leg and be balanced even when sober can fail the one-leg stand and face possible arrest because of it.

Contact an Elgin, IL DUI Attorney

Drivers who have been wrongfully arrested on a DUI charge or those who have refused a field sobriety test can face many consequences including the loss of a driver’s license, fines, and even jail time for multiple offenders. The lawyers of the Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola can help defend a driver’s rights and build a defense to avoid any negative conviction. To schedule a free consultation with a Kane County DUI lawyer, call our office at 847-488-0889.

 

Source:

https://www.isp.state.il.us/docs/sfst_1day_refresher.pdf

 

Last modified on

Aurora, IL drug lawyer

Throughout the U.S., the number of states with either legalized medical or recreational marijuana, or both, is on the rise. With that comes an increase in incidents of driving while under the influence of cannabis and more focus from law enforcement on busting impaired drivers. If you have been charged with driving under the influence of drugs, it is critical you enlist the help of an experienced criminal defense lawyer immediately. 

Drugged Driving in Illinois 

Here in the state of Illinois, medical marijuana is legal for approved applicants under the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act, signed in 2013. Since the induction of the program, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has approved over 42,000 applicants for legal consumption of marijuana for medicinal purposes. Driving under the influence of marijuana though can come with significant criminal punishment, whether you are a legal medical marijuana cardholder or not.

If a police officer has reasonable cause to believe you may be under the influence of marijuana, they are permitted to submit you to chemical testing. If you refuse the chemical test, you will face an automatic 12-month license suspension. Failing a chemical test results in a six-month license suspension. A chemical test that finds 5 nanograms or more of THC per milliliter of whole blood results in a failed test, or 10 nanograms of THC found in another bodily substance. 

Even if a person has a medical marijuana card, they will face the consequences of a DUI charge, in the same manner as a drunk driver. According to Illinois state law, a first-time DUI conviction constitutes a Class A misdemeanor, with up to one year in jail, a year of revoked driving privileges, and fines up to $2,500. Subsequent DUI convictions result in longer license revocation periods and significant jail time. 

Anyone without a medical marijuana card who is pulled over for DUI and has marijuana in their vehicle can also face a drug possession charge, the severity of which depends on the amount seized by police. 

Contact an Elgin, IL Drug DUI Lawyer 

If you have been charged with driving under the influence of marijuana, Attorney Brian J. Mirandola is prepared to fight on your behalf in the pursuit of the best possible legal outcome. Attorney Mirandola will aim to help you retain your driving privileges and keep a conviction off your record. To schedule a free initial consultation with a skilled Kane County criminal defense attorney, call us at 847-488-0889. 

Sources:

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/drivers/traffic_safety/DUI/home.html

https://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/blogs/stateline/2018/05/31/drugged-driving-deaths-spike-with-spread-of-legal-marijuana-opioid-abuse

https://www.iwu.edu/counseling/Illinois_Drug_Laws.htm

Last modified on

Posted on in DUI

Kane County aggravated DUI lawyer

Here in the state of Illinois, law enforcement is always on the lookout for drunk drivers. According to the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office, police made 27,046 DUI arrests in 2017 alone. According to Illinois state law, there are a number of factors that can cause a DUI to be elevated from a misdemeanor to a felony. In these cases, the DUI becomes an aggravated DUI

What Constitutes an Aggravated DUI? 

In the vast majority of cases, a DUI is charged as a misdemeanor. When aggravating factors justify the DUI to be designated as a felony, the legal ramifications can be substantial. This includes mandatory jail time to the loss of driving privileges for as long as a decade.

Third or Subsequent DUI Conviction

One of the most common aggravating factors is a third DUI conviction. Here in the state of Illinois, this constitutes a Class 2 felony. If convicted, the offender could face up to seven years in prison. In the event of a third DUI, the court may decide you are no longer capable of driving with a standard driver’s license and suspend it for up to 10 years. At that point, you can obtain a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP). If you can adhere to the rules and regulations of an RDP, for five consecutive years, you may be able to apply for full license reinstatement. 

DUI with Bodily Harm

If you are arrested for DUI charges after a collision that caused a person to become physically disabled or disfigured, you are likely to face a Class 4 felony charge. In these instances, the judge may decide to institute prison time as punishment, which may include a minimum sentence of one year. If a person is fatally injured, you could face a Class 2 felony, with a minimum three-year sentence and subsequent two-year license revocation.

Other Aggravating Factors

These include being charged with a DUI while transporting a minor, and driving under the influence of alcohol with a revoked or suspended license. Other possible aggravating factors include driving an uninsured vehicle, driving drunk in a school zone during school hours or while driving a vehicle-for-hire. 

Contact an Elgin, IL DUI Defense Lawyer 

After being arrested on DUI charges, it is important to act quickly. A conviction can ultimately result in heavy fines and potential jail time. Fortunately, a qualified defense lawyer can provide a defense strategy to secure the best possible outcome for you and your family. Attorney Brian J. Mirandola will examine your case and assist you throughout the legal process. To schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable Kane County criminal defense attorney, contact us today at 847-488-0889. 

Sources:

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

Last modified on

Posted on in DUI

Aurora, IL DUI lawyer

Here in the state of Illinois, law enforcement is constantly on the lookout for drunk drivers. According to the Illinois Secretary of State’s office, more than 27,000 people were arrested on DUI charges in 2017 alone. A DUI conviction can come with serious legal ramifications and should not be taken lightly. 

Once you have been pulled over by a police officer, it is important to understand how your actions can impact your case. In the event of an arrest, contact an experienced DUI lawyer as soon as possible. 

Illinois DUI Stops

If you are driving, and you see a law enforcement officer turn their lights on behind you, it is important to follow basic safety procedures. Do not stop in the middle of the road, simply slow your vehicle and find a safe place to pull over. Do not pull over on a bridge, next to a guardrail, or on a sharp curve. Once you have come to a complete stop in a safe location, it is important to remain calm. 

As the officer approaches your vehicle, keep both hands on the steering wheel and remain seated. If the officer requests your license and registration, comply as requested. If the officer has reason to suspect you are driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, they will likely request a field sobriety test. 

In the state of Illinois, implied consent laws state you will agree to blood-alcohol content (BAC) testing. Despite the implied consent, it is not a crime to refuse chemical testing. That said, if you decline, you will face an automatic 12-month license suspension. 

If you submit to testing and the officer deems you are driving under the influence, you will be taken to the police station and charged with a DUI. 

License Suspension and Revocation

Once you have been charged, it is important to seek skilled legal guidance. A first-time DUI conviction constitutes a Class A misdemeanor, which can result in up to one year in jail and fines of $2,500. A first-time DUI offender also receives a 12-month driver’s license suspension. Subsequent DUI convictions come with harsher punishments. A second DUI conviction results in a five-year suspension. If you are convicted of a third DUI, you may face a license revocation period of 10 years, while a fourth conviction constitutes a lifetime revocation of driving privileges. 

Contact an Elgin, IL DUI Lawyer

With years of experience serving the state of Illinois, Attorney Brian J. Mirandola is prepared to aggressively represent you to keep a DUI conviction off your record and preserve your ability to drive as needed. Do not wait any longer. It is critical to work with a skilled legal team immediately. To schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable Kane County criminal defense attorney, call us today at 847-488-0889. 

Sources

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

Last modified on

Posted on in DUI

Aurora, IL, Defense Attorney

Here in the state of Illinois, drunk driving accidents make up 30 percent of all statewide motor vehicle crash fatalities. Because of the large number of drunk driving deaths, law enforcement officials have cracked down on DUIs in Illinois, making over 27,000 DUI arrests in 2017 alone. If you have been pulled over by a police officer, and have been drinking, it is easy to feel as if you have no options other than to submit to blood alcohol concentration (BAC) testing, but it is important to note that it is not a crime to refuse a DUI test

BAC Test Refusal

As a driver in the state of Illinois, you imply consent to be DUI tested when you receive your driver’s license. That means refusing a BAC test is not a criminal offense, but rather an administrative offense. 

While there are a number of options for law enforcement to test your BAC after pulling you over, including urine or blood drawings, the most common testing method is through the use of a breathalyzer. This is a device used to test the BAC of a person under suspicion of DUI, with the use of a breath sample. 

It is important to note that refusing a breathalyzer can come with harsh legal consequences. A first-time offender will likely face an immediate license suspension of one year. A subsequent refusal can result in a three-year suspension. Still, by refusing to take a breathalyzer, you limit the prosecution to only the officer’s personal account of the incident. 

If you do take the test and are over the legal limit of .08, while it can be difficult to avoid a DUI conviction, it is not impossible. A skilled attorney can investigate the facts of your case and formulate the best possible course of action.

Contact an Elgin, IL DUI Defense Lawyer 

With more than a decade of legal experience in the state of Illinois, including as an assistant state’s attorney, Brian J. Mirandola is well equipped to fight for your rights. If you have been arrested on DUI charges, it is critical to understand the potential ramifications of a conviction. Our legal team will fight to keep a conviction off your record and can help preserve your driving privileges. To schedule a free consultation with an experienced Kane County criminal defense attorney, call us today at 847-488-0889. 

Sources:

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

Last modified on
Avvo Illinois State Bar Association Kane COunty Bar Association
Back to Top