Archive for the ‘Naperville DUI’ Category
August 30th, 2013 at 2:10 pm
In Illinois, it is illegal to drive a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. When it comes to alcohol, a person will be considered under the influence if they have a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or more, or if the circumstances indicate that they are unable to operate a vehicle safely.
One may be considered under the influence even if their blood alcohol content is substantially below .08, as long as there is enough evidence to show that they were not acting normally. In a DUI stop, the field sobriety test will be a strong indicator of this even without a breathalyzer test.
The first time a person is caught driving under the influence, they are subject to a Class A misdemeanor, revocation of their license and a minimum $750 fine. The second time they are caught, they will be subject to a Class A misdemeanor, license revocation, five days imprisonment (or 240 hours of community service), as well as having to have an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle.
Illinois law also has harsher punishment for cases where the driver was driving while intoxicated while transporting a child under 18 or if there is an accident. If the there was an accident, the defendant is liable for all the expenses associated with emergency medical vehicles. Moreover, under Illinois law, each subsequent DUI (especially aggravated ones) will carry stiffer penalties.
Lastly, if a driver is found guilty of a DUI, they may also be ordered to undergo counseling to determine if they have a substance abuse problem.
The Illinois DUI statutes contain specific guidelines and impose stiff penalties on violators. However, those same guidelines can enable a person to fight or appeal their DUI charge if the process was flawed. If you are facing a DUI, do not take a chance, have an Illinois DUI attorney who knows the system fight for you.
August 26th, 2013 at 1:54 pm
Imagine this: you are sitting at a stop light with your loved one, awaiting your turn. Then, in an instant, your life is over because of another person’s lapse in judgment. This is what happened to Bryan Bulger, who was waiting his turn at a stop light. As he waited with his girlfriend sitting in the passenger seat, another driver, Jason Rymut, slammed into Bryan’s car while driving 83 miles per hour. The force of the impact caused Bryan’s car to crash into a third vehicle. The force of the impact caused massive injuries to Bryan’s head and body, killing him instantly. Bryan’s girlfriend and the driver of the third car survived, as did the drunk driver.
Prior to the crash, Rymut was using his cell phone and the black box in his vehicle revealed that he was driving at speeds reaching 86 miles per hour. During their investigation, police promptly smelled alcohol in Rymut’s breath and blood drawn at the hospital revealed that his blood alcohol content was .121, substantially more than the maximum Illinois allows.
Considering the evidence against him, Jason Rymut opted to plead guilty to charges of aggravated driving under the influence instead of taking a chance with a jury. The judge considered Bryan’s age, the emotional nature of the case, the toll that Bryan’s death had taken on his family and girlfriend, and sentenced Rymut to nine years in prison. The judge stated that Rymut’s decision to drive drunk showed a “callous disregard” for the safety of other people, ultimately taking Bryan’s life, and Rymut should spend his sentence contemplating the “horrific results of his collision.”
Drinking and driving is serious and can have devastating effects on the driver and the public. If you face DUI charges, consult an experienced Illinois DUI attorney.
July 22nd, 2013 at 10:08 pm
When people are convicted of DUI offenses, law enforcement has certain ways to keep them from driving drunk again. In 2009, Illinois instituted that breath alcohol ignition interlock devices (BAIID) should be installed in the vehicles of parties guilty of drunk driving.
The BAIID requires that the operator of the vehicle to breathe into a device that can stop the car from working if the blood alcohol level of the driver is equal to or higher than .05 percent. This has worked to varying degrees since the have been installed in cars, with DUIs declining overall since 2009.
Officials maintain that BAIIDs are often misused by the very people they are trying to protect. Some previous offenders have anyone else blow into the device, including children. Others have used tanks of compressed air in order to drive drunk. The problem is so bad that Illinois State administrator Susan McKinney estimates that of the 11,000 drivers with BAIIDs, over 3,000 are caught trying to drive over the limit every year.
Now an attempt is being made to even stop those circumventing these ignition devices. Prior to the 4th of July celebrations, Illinois has started including new technologies in ignition interlock devices. It is a camera which snaps a picture each time the device is used, that way there is no foul play or cheating the test.
Illinois DUI defense attorney Donald Ramsell is a major opponent of this new technology. Not only does he feel that this is an invasion of privacy but that the measure to add cameras to these devices is not supported by any evidence that proves their necessity.
If you have been pulled over under suspicion of DUI, don’t fight by yourself. The law office of Donald Ramsell has defended over 10,000 drivers just like you. Contact their experienced DUI defense attorneys in Wheaton who can advise you through this difficult time.
June 19th, 2013 at 8:23 pm
According to a recent article, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White has expressed support of the idea of reducing the state drunk-driving limit from .08 to .05 blood alcohol content.
The National Transportation Safety Board has reported that this change could reduce the risk of car accidents by half. Although they recommend that the entire nation adopt this new DUI limit, it will be up to each state’s lawmakers to make that decision.
Illinois State Rep. Dennis Reboletti has stated that our lawmakers will need to work with the secretary of state’s office as well as police in order to determine if this change should be made.
Reboletti has raised the point that the limit was once at .10 and was decreased to .08. He has also said that a task force would be needed to “look over” the suggestion during the summer to see if it’s truly reasonable.
Reboletti also proposed his own drunk-driving legislation recently, in which punishments for drivers-for-hire who are caught driving drunk will be much more severe.
Reboletti said, “I think it’s pretty fair to say if you are out drinking with friends and you hire a bus or a cab, you don’t want the driver to be more drunk than you are.”
This new proposal is reportedly in response to a limo driver being charged with a DUI while taking Oswego High School students to their prom.
In that situation, the driver would only be charged with a misdemeanor DUI. Under Illinois law, a driver-for-hire can only be charged with an aggravated DUI on a first offense if they are transporting passengers under the age of 18.
If you have any questions at all about this new proposal, especially if it does become reality, contact an experienced Illinois DUI lawyer to assist you.
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June 14th, 2013 at 11:27 am
Benjamin J. Black, 28, of Sycamore, was arrested in May in connection with the February crash that killed 11-year-old Matthew Ranken, according to the Chicago Tribune. Black “had heroin in his system when he caused a chain-reaction” incident, in which he “failed to stop for a line of cars that were halted because of another crash.” Several other motorists were also taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Black’s arrest is just one of many in the Chicago area involving heroin use. According to ABC Local Chicago, “heroin addiction is a growing problem across Illinois” and law enforcement, doctors, family members of community leaders are “trying to confront the problem.”
And it’s not just in the inner city that heroin use is a growing problem, according to ABC Local. One retired Chicago police officer, John Roberts, had moved his family from the city to the suburbs upon retirement, and it was there that his “son started using heroin and eventually died from an overdose,” reports ABC Local. Roberts told ABC that he “was shocked that he did not know how dangerous it was. And I was shocked that many other kids his age were involved with drugs and heroin.”
According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics and reported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), “more than 16 percent of weekend, nighttime drivers tested positive for illegal, prescription, or over-the-counter medications. More than 11 percent tested positive for illicit drugs.” A different study, according to the NIDA, found that in Maryland, 34 percent of car accident victims tested positive for drugs only, while only 16 percent tested positive for alcohol only. The institute notes that because this represents only one geographic location, findings cannot be generalized, but the numbers are concurrent with a spike in illicit drug use in the Chicago area.
Black has been charged with aggravated DUI and faces incarceration if convicted. If you or someone you know has been charged with a crime such as this, don’t go through it alone. Contact a dedicated Chicago-area DUI attorney today.
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June 8th, 2013 at 2:02 pm
According to an article in the Sun Times, a new rule regarding ignition interlock devices will go into effect in Illinois on July 1st. Currently, drivers who wish to continue driving after a DUI arrest can opt to have an ignition interlock device installed into their vehicle. The driver must blow into the device, and if there is any alcohol on the driver’s breath, the vehicle will not start. The new rule also requires a camera to be installed into the vehicle, to ensure that the person who takes the breathalyzer is the same person who drives the car.
Supporters of the device include Susan McKeigue, the state director of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, who said, “There are so many people who try to defeat the devices. Anything that helps keep them honest, we’re in favor of.”
However, not everyone thinks that adding the camera is a good idea. Not only does the extra equipment raise the price of installing and borrowing the device, limiting the number of people who can afford it, it is also seen as an invasion of privacy.
Donald Ramsell, a DUI attorney based in Wheaton, Illinois, said, “It’s just another creep into the invasion of privacy of drivers. You literally have Big Brother sitting in the car with you.” Ramsell explained that because of the position of the camera, the front seat passenger or other passengers in the vehicle may be in the images too. “It’s a subtle crossing of the line, but it’s a momentous one”, said Ramsell.
If you’ve been arrested and accused of driving under the influence, installing an ignition interlock device is one way to retain your driving privileges when your license is suspended. However, Ramsell and others have argued against camera requirement because most interlock devices require periodic breath tests while driving.
Ramsell said, “Is your friend going to sit in the car and keep blowing into the tube so you can drive drunk?”
Donald Ramsell is a highly qualified DUI attorney in Illinois. He will help you fight for your rights if you’ve been accused of driving under the influence. Click here to contact him today!
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June 4th, 2013 at 1:06 pm
Here in the state of Illinois, there are very strict laws regarding driving under the influence. In many cases, you can face license suspensions or revocations, fines, and even jail time. But what happens if you have been pulled over by an officer and charged with your very first DUI?
If you have been pulled over with a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher, you may face some of the following consequences: jail, fines, license suspension, or community service.
For your first DUI, it is possible for you to be looking at up to one year of jail time. However, this sentence can be increased by up to six months if a child under 16 was in the vehicle with you. In regards to fines, you may face up to $2,500. Also keep in mind that you will probably end up paying for legal expenses, which can further increase this amount. A $500 minimum fine can be added to your original fine if your BAC is above 0.16%. Another $1,000 minimum can be added if a child under 16 was in the vehicle.
If charged with a DUI, you could possibly have your license suspended for a minimum of one year, well as a possible vehicle registration suspension. Community service is another likely consequence you will face, with 100 hours minimum if your BAC is over 0.16%, or 25 days if a child under 16 was in the vehicle.
While not as serious as a second or third DUI, your first DUI is still a very serious matter. If you have been charged with a DUI, be sure to contact a dedicated Illinois DUI attorney to represent your case and answer any questions you may have.
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May 23rd, 2013 at 2:39 pm
B.R.A.D. (Be Responsible about Drinking), an organization named after Bradley McCue who died of alcohol poisoning after celebrating his 21st birthday, provides a breakdown of the effects of specific blood alcohol levels (B.A.C.) on their website.
- BAC of 0.02 – 0.03% (about two drinks): No loss of coordination, slight euphoria and loss of shyness. There could be a slight loss of sense of judgment.
- BAC of 0.04 – 0.06% (about three drinks): Feeling of well-being, relaxation and lower inhibitions. There may be some minor impairment of reasoning and memory, lowering of caution. Inhibitions decrease and spontaneity becomes more common.
- BAC of 0.07 – 0.09% (about four to five drinks): Slight impairment of balance, speech, vision, reaction time, and hearing. There are difficulties assessing dangers and rewards because of the brain’s lessening ability to pay attention to bad criticism. Person believes they are functioning better than they actually are.
- BAC of 0.10 – 0.125% (about six drinks): Begins to have problems maintaining balance. Aggressiveness also increases at this point. There is a significant impairment of motor coordination and loss of good judgment. Speech may be slurred; balance, vision, reaction time and hearing are impaired.
- BAC of 0.13 – 0.15% (about seven drinks): Gross motor impairment and lack of physical control. There is blurred vision and major loss of balance. Euphoria is reduced and dysphoria (anxiety, restlessness) begins. Judgment and perception are also severely impaired. Nausea and vomiting are often experienced at this point as the body attempts to expel the toxins from the alcohol.
- BAC of .20% (about ten drinks): Person feels dazed, confused or otherwise disoriented and may need help to stand or walk. At this point, blacking out may occur. Memory is significantly altered, if not completely debilitated. The gag reflex is impaired and person can choke if they begin to vomit.
- BAC of 0.25% (about 12 drinks): All mental, physical and sensory functions are severely impaired. There is a significant increased risk of asphyxiation from choking on vomit and of seriously injuries from falls or accident.
- BAC of 0.35% (about 18 drinks): This level of impairment is comparable to the amount one would experience under surgical anesthesia. Coma is possible.
- BAC of 0.40% (about 20 or more drinks): Gag reflexes are blocked, so this is the stage in which people choke on their own vomit. The onset of coma and death due to respiratory arrest can occur.
If you have been arrested for drinking and driving, contact an experienced Chicago DUI defense attorney to represent you. A guilty conviction could mean loss of license, fines and possibly a prison sentence.
May 16th, 2013 at 12:16 pm
Driving under the influence can have many ramifications, from losing your drivers license to death. Officers will suspect that a person is driving under the influence based on the speed and steadiness of the driving. Proving drunkenness, however, is not as simple. In order to prove drunk driving in court, police officers often use data from a breathalyzer machine to test how much alcohol the driver has in their system at the time the test is administered.
Alcohol is absorbed into the mouth, throat, stomach and intestines, and makes its way from there into bloodstream. As blood travels to the lungs, the alcohol moves through the alveoli, the membranes of the lung’s air sacs. The alcohol evaporates from the blood into the air, and is exhaled as a person breathes. The breathalyzer can measure the amount of alcohol in a person’s breath, and it is directly related to the amount of alcohol in the bloodstream. Rather than dealing with needles and blood, a police officer only has to use the breathalyzer machine. In most states, including Illinois, the blood alcohol content (BAC) must be below .08% in order to be considered below the legal limit.
If you are pulled over, you are not required to take any kind of field sobriety test, including a breathalyzer. If you are arrested, you may be asked to give a blood sample at the police station- but by doing so, you are giving them evidence to use against you in court, which is not advised. It is in your best interest to avoid sobriety tests in Illinois until you have spoken with an attorney. It is possible for a breathalyzer to be incorrectly administered, or improperly prepared prior to administration.
If you have been charged with a DUI, contact a lawyer who is familiar with DUI cases and can help you. An Illinois DUI attorney can make a difference in your case.
April 12th, 2013 at 5:55 pm
While many people are familiar with the basics of being convicted of DUI in the state of Illinois, they may not be aware of the other types of DUI-related offenses with which you may be charged, or the potential penalties that they can bring. The Illinois Secretary of State DUI Fact Book details many of these criminal offenses, as follows:
- Possession of Drugs in a Vehicle – This offense occurs if a driver illegally possesses a controlled substance such as cannabis. The potential penalty for a first-time offender is the suspension of his or her driver’s license for one year; subsequent convictions can result in the total revocation of one’s driving privileges.
- Knowingly Permitting a Driver Under the Influence to Operate a Vehicle – This offense is a Class A misdemeanor under Illinois law, and can result in incarceration of up to one year and fines of up to $2,500.
- Driving on a Suspended or Revoked License – A first conviction of this criminal offense is a Class A misdemeanor, but subsequent convictions (up to nine convictions) are a Class 4 felony offense. Depending on the number of previous convictions, offenders can face varying periods of imprisonment, community service requirements, fines, suspension or revocation of one’s driver’s license, and seizure or forfeiture of one’s vehicle.
- Illegal Transportation /Open Container – This offense occurs under Illinois law if you illegally transport, carry, possess or have any alcoholic beverages in the passenger compartment of a motor vehicle, except in the original container with the seal unbroken. Conviction of this offense can result in a fine, points being added to one’s driver’s license, and suspension or revocation of one’s driving privileges.
As you can see from the above information, DUI-related criminal offenses can be just as or even more serious than DUI offenses themselves in terms of potential penalties. Therefore, if you are accused of any of these crimes, or any other type of DUI-related offense, you should immediately contact a skilled and knowledgeable DuPage County DUI attorney for help in fighting these charges.