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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

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dui checkpointIllinois is one of nine states receiving federal funding to participate in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's "No Refusal" initiative. The initiative centers around police setting up so-called No Refusal checkpoints, which are named as such because the police there have access to a streamlined procedure for acquiring search warrants. This allows them to perform blood alcohol concentration (BAC) tests over a driver's objection. However, some states have refused to implement these DUI checkpoints, citing concerns that they may be violating their citizen's Fourth Amendment rights, which protect them from unreasonable searches and seizures. What No Refusal Checkpoints Are

When a person refuses to consent to a BAC test, the police have the option of seeking a warrant from a judge to get the person's blood tested to determine the individual’s alcohol level. No refusal checkpoints are named that way because of a specialized procedure that the police have available to them to order blood tests for drivers who refuse to take a Breathalyzer test. The judges, who are ordinarily on call, are made aware that they will be participating in a No Refusal weekend so that they can prepare to provide police with speedy access to warrants.

Additionally, during the operation of these checkpoints, many police stations will have a nurse on staff so that the blood test can be performed at the station rather than requiring the police to bring the person to a hospital. However, this new initiative is not without its controversy. In fact, 21 other states have the ability to access this program because they allow their police to get warrants via a phone call, but many are refusing to participate, citing concerns about the program's constitutionality because of how easily it provides police access to warrants.

Fourth Amendment Concerns

The constitutional concern that many people express arises out of the Fourth Amendment. This portion of the Constitution protects citizens from "unreasonable searches and seizures." In practice, this means that police usually need to acquire a warrant before they search a person or their belongings, and the use of a BAC tests counts as a search.

Some people are concerned that this No Refusal initiative undermines the protections of the Fourth Amendment because the court's issuing of search warrants should be a careful decision that weighs the need to prevent crime against the individual's right to privacy. This issue is also complicated by the fact that Illinois is an implied consent jurisdiction, which means that there are certain penalties that go along with refusing a BAC test, such as a license suspension.

If you have recently been charged with a DUI or some other criminal offense, contact an experienced Elgin criminal attorney. The The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola can help protect your rights and your interests in court.
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Posted on in Criminal Defense

DUI penaltyThe state of Illinois considers drunk driving to be a serious crime, and with good reason. According to statistics compiled by the Illinois Secretary of State, hundreds of people every year lose their lives in accidents related to drunk driving. With that in mind, the state imposes severe penalties like jail time, fines, and license suspensions for anyone caught driving under the influence. Even people who do not test positive for alcohol and instead simply refuse to take the breathalyzer test can still face serious penalties for doing so.

Penalties for Drunk Driving

In Illinois, drunk driving penalties start to occur once a person's blood alcohol content passes 0.08 percent, provided that they are over the age of 21. Underage drinkers trigger separate zero-tolerance penalties if they blow anything above a 0.00. Assuming the driver is of age, the severity of the DUI punishments depends on how many DUIs the person has had in the past. For a first offense, the person can find themselves in jail for up to a year, along with a possible fine of up to $2,500. Additionally, first-time DUI convictions result in a license suspension for at least one year. Furthermore, if the person's BAC is more than twice the legal limit, they face a mandatory minimum fine of $500, along with 100 hours of community service.

A second DUI sees very similar penalties with a few alterations. First, the person's driver's license is revoked for at least five years rather than just one. Also, the person would face a mandatory minimum sentence of either five days in jail, or 240 hours of community service. These penalties become even more severe after the third DUI conviction, with a person's license being revoked for at least a full decade. The third DUI also triggers a much harsher mandatory minimum prison sentence, with violators sentenced to between three and seven years in prison. Beyond these standard penalties, everyone convicted of even a single DUI must have an ignition interlock device placed in their car. These devices function like breathalyzers and prevent people from turning on the car if they cannot pass the sobriety test.

Penalties for Refusing the Test

Even refusing to take the sobriety test can trigger serious legal penalties. This is because Illinois has an "implied consent" law, which means that people agree to submit to alcohol testing as a condition of getting their driver's license. A failure to take this test when asked can result in a suspension of a person's license for at least one year, with multiple refusals increasing the time.

If you or a loved one is currently facing DUI charges, contact experienced Kane County criminal lawyer Brian J. Mirandola. A dedicated criminal defense attorney can help you avoid serious criminal penalties that can follow you for life.
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