Archive for April, 2013
April 30th, 2013 at 2:29 pm
According to this story in the Chicago Sun Times, on June 13 of last year, 32-year-old Michael Moreno was chasing another car he claimed cut him off when he abruptly turned left into oncoming traffic. As he did so, a 63-year-old man named Gerald Puglise slammed his motorcycle into the car—later dying from the collision.
Defense attorneys for Moreno claimed that he was chasing the vehicle to get the license plate number when the crash occurred. Additionally, they had tests showing Puglise had both alcohol and a prescription painkiller in his system—but the prosecuting attorneys argued Puglise’s actions on the road weren’t factors in the crash.
The Chicago Sun-Times reports here that Moreno was charged with a felony DUI because he had both marijuana and cocaine in his system. Along with the DUI, Moreno was found guilty of possession of cannabis, obstruction of justice, and leaving the scene of a fatal crash. He currently faces a 29-year prison sentence.
Friends and relatives of Puglise were very happy with the outcome. Altogether, about 15 friends and family were gathered in the Wheaton courtroom to hear the verdict. Puglise’s son Matt told reporters afterwards that his father was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and that everyone still misses him.
Puglise was a Vietnam veteran and retired electrician. On the day of the accident, he had been out visiting with a friend. When he struck Moreno’s car, he was returning to his house in Lombard, Illinois.
Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol can have serious repercussions that may affect more than just you. If you’ve been charged with a DUI, our esteemed law firm in DuPage County can help you build a solid defense. Contact us today to learn more and speak with a knowledgeable attorney.
Image courtesy freedigitalphotos.net
April 26th, 2013 at 2:05 pm
According to the Secretary of State DUI Handbook, there is a process that is followed when you are arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in the state of Illinois.
Hiring an experienced and aggressive Illinois DUI attorney can make all the difference in your drunk driving case. The first court date may be several months out from the actual event. During which time your memory of the arrest event and that of any witnesses and/or the arresting officer will have become faded. Therefore, talking to an attorney immediately can be instrumental to your case. This includes researching the investigations and recording of the details, like weather conditions and traffic conditions, and is extremely important to your case.
Up to this point, you will have no idea of the exact charges being brought up against you. You will first learn about this on your arraignment date in court. Even if you have hired an attorney by this point (which you should have done), it is still mandatory for you to appear in court in person on the first court date. During this first hearing, you will find out what you are being charged with and discuss the best options for your specific case with your attorney.
Although your DUI attorney will be representing you in court, you are the only one who can make the decision on any plea deals offered to you by the prosecution. Your lawyer can relay courtroom information, collect state’s evidence, such as video, statements and police records, etc, but they cannot act for you.
There is no law stating you must take any plea, and you have the right to refuse, especially if you know you are not guilty. This means letting your DUI attorney know you want a trial and dealing with many more court dates in order to clear your name. There are several circumstances that may affect the offer that the state gives you and the possible punishment that you may be facing.
This is not the type of case that you want to tackle alone without the proper representation. Contact our DuPage County DUI attorneys today!
April 22nd, 2013 at 12:43 pm
Receiving even one DUI can seriously affect your life—court fees, revision of driving privileges, a permanent mark on your driving record, and more. However, despite the gravity of the situation, many offenders end up with multiple DUIs on their record. This article explains in more detail what usually happens when someone receives their second DUI.
Illinois has a “look back” period of five years for DUI charges. This means that if you have a prior DUI conviction and you are arrested for driving drunk within five years of that date, your charge will be considered your second DUI. It is still considered a misdemeanor (unless great bodily harm has resulted from your actions) yet you will have your license suspended for one year. You are able to apply for a restricted driver’s license, but if you refuse the chemical test, your license suspension will be extended to three years. Criminal penalties include 240 hours of community service and up to $2,500 in fines. You can also be imprisoned for up to one year—with mandatory imprisonment of five days.
If you are arrested for DUI charges and have had a previous DUI conviction within the past 20 years, it will be considered a “first” DUI offense, but you will still have harsher punishments than if it really was your first DUI. Driving privileges will be suspended for five years, and both will be on your record. Additionally, you are not allowed to enter into plea negotiations with the prosecuting attorneys.
While the consequences for a second DUI are severe, having a talented lawyer representing your case can make a significant impact in your overall sentencing. Our law firm has been rated one of the top 5 DUI defense firms in Illinois—so contact us today for your free initial consultation.