Archive for the ‘BAC testing’ Category

Illinois Drivers License Reinstatement for Cop Denied by Jesse White Himself

May 21st, 2014 at 1:41 pm

Illinois Drivers License Reinstatement: As reported in the below story, Jesse White, Illinois Secretary of State, has been personally blocking the reinstatement process of a police officer’s drivers license, even though his own hearing officer ruled in the officer’s favor:

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White has personally been blocking a former Illinois State Police trooper from getting his driver’s license back, according to a spokesman for the office.

Now, the attorney for former trooper Matt Mitchell plans to take the battle to court.


Photo of In-car Breathalyzer

Slone said he asked for an administrative review hearing to get the hearing officer’s decision enforced — or to at least find out who was blocking reinstatement, and why. A status conference is set for Thursday morning in Jefferson County Circuit Court in Mount Vernon.

“I’m going to push to have oral arguments on that pretty soon,” Slone said.

Dave Druker, spokesman for the Secretary of State’s Office, said there is no mystery who overruled the hearing officer — it was Secretary of State Jesse White himself.

“He does not feel at this time that the case has been made as to why Mr. Mitchell should get his license back,” Druker said of the decision by White, a Democrat. “He has the final say and, as an elected official, it’s his responsibility to make that decision.”

Druker said there was no communication between the Secretary of State’s Office and Slone before the attorney asked to have Tuesday’s appeal hearing canceled.

Kim Schlau, mother of crash victims Jessica and Kelli Uhl, planned to attend the hearing Tuesday to argue against Mitchell getting his license back, according to family spokesman David Craig.

“It was part of the plea deal when Mr. Mitchell avoided prison that he be kept off the road,” Craig said.

Mitchell was driving 126 mph, talking on his cellphone and typing into a dashboard-mounted computer when he lost control of his police cruiser in November 2007 east of O’Fallon, killing the two young women. He’s tried unsuccessfully four times previously to get his license back.

Mitchell was sentenced in 2010 to 30 months of probation in relation to the crash.

Druker said White has made no statement about whether he plans to permanently deny Mitchell his license or what criteria he would have to meet to get it back. He acknowledged it was possible that a judge could order the Secretary of State’s Office to return Mitchell’s driving privileges.

“I’m sure that has happened before,” Druker said. “But I can’t remember any specific cases in which it did.”

While he wouldn’t speculate on the outcome of the administrative review hearing, Slone said he plans to schedule another appeal hearing in a month or two.

Contact reporter Scott Wuerz at or call 239-2626.

Read more here:


Anti-Alcohol Forces Find Obstacles in South Carolina DUI Laws

April 10th, 2014 at 12:30 pm


Interlock Ignition Laws Are Being Proposed by Groupds Tied to IID Companies in Every State

The prohibitionists are attempting to push through a bill that would mandate breathalyzers in all cars of first offenders. The truth is, these groups are supported through donations from the companies that make or install the breathalyzers. The MADD groups use statistical data to claim that the laws are well more successful than they actually are – there is no cross-comparison between states who mandate and those who do not – rather they simply cite to statistics that show a reduction of DUI arrests following passage of the law as proof of its success. That trick is called “Post Hoc Ergo Proctor Hoc.” Of course, these groups never accept responsibility for past proposals that have failed to reduce arrests. Nor do they ask for those other draconian laws to be lifted from the books when proven unsuccessful.

As reported:

“Emma’s Law, the state’s first get-tough effort on drunken drivers in years, ran into a roadblock Tuesday in the S.C. Senate, when one senator blocked the bill for a day.”

“Emma’s Law was amended slightly in the House, and Lourie and his supporters want the Senate to approve the House version of the bill. Due to parliamentary rules, supporters say, if the Senate changes the House version in any way, that likely could doom the bill’s chances of becoming law. The bill would then have to clear numerous new legislative hurdles to be passed.”

The House made several amendments to the Senate version of Emma’s Law. One would raise the blood alcohol level requirement to .15 from .12 for the standard requiring any person pleading guilty to or being convicted of first offense DUI to use an ignition interlock device.

For two years, Lourie and some other lawmakers, along with victims and safety advocates, have pushed – sometimes with fierce resistance from trial lawyers – to get the bill first through the Senate and, earlier this month, the S.C. House. For more than a year, the bill was mired in an obscure House subcommittee, four of whose five members are lawyers.

South Carolina’s current DUI laws contain numerous loopholes that allow accused and convicted drunken drivers to hire lawyers and get quickly back on the roads. Defending drunk drivers in the various courts of appeal and getting them back driving is a booming $100 million-a-year legal business in South Carolina.

South Carolina has one of the highest rates of drunken driving fatalities in the nation. The proposed law is named after Emma Longstreet, a 6-year-old Lexington girl killed by a repeat drunken driving offender in 2012. Since Emma died, drunken drivers have killed more than 500 other South Carolinians.”

Read more here:

Man Charged with DUI after Slamming into Cop Car

January 23rd, 2014 at 10:41 am

Alex Tapia-Aguilar, 34, of Round Lake, was charged with drunken driving and arrested after slamming into a police car while intoxicated, according to the Chicago Tribune. Tapia-Aguilar was driving on the wrong side of the road when he hit the squad car, and injured a police officer in the process. He is now facing “two counts each of aggravated driving under the influence and DUI,” according to the Chicago Tribune. “After the crash, the officer had to climb out of his window to stop Tapia-Aguilar because of the extent of the damage to his vehicle,” the Tribune reports. The officer was taken to Vista Health System, treated for his injuries, and released. Tapia-Aguilar refused medical help at the scene.

DUI Police Crash IMAGEDamage to both cars was extensive, the Tribune reports. It isn’t clear if sobriety tests were administered immediately following the crash, but Tapia-Aguilar told police that “he thought the car might have been delivering papers,” according to the Tribune. Tapia-Aguilar was also “charged with driving without a valid driver’s license, driving without insurance, improper lane usage, failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident and criminal damage to state-supported property,” the Tribune reports.

Aggravated DUI carries a heavier punishment than DUI, according to the 2014 Illinois DUI Factbook. “Any mandatory term of imprisonment or community service is not subject to suspension or reduction,” the Factbook states. An aggravated DUI can apply to a number of different scenarios including (but not limited to):

  • A third or subsequent DUI
  • DUI committed while driving a school bus carrying one or more persons age 18 or younger
  • DUI resulting in great bodily harm
  • DUI committed without a valid license
  • DUI committed without car insurance
  • DUI committed after a previous conviction for reckless homicide while DUI
  • DUI resulting in death

Illinois is a Zero Tolerance state, which means that if you’re pulled over and your BAC measures .01 or greater you can be ticketed. To have a BAC of .01 a normal adult of any weight needs only to consume one drink in an hour.

If you or someone you know has been charged with DUI in Chicago, don’t go through it alone. Contact Ramsell & Associates today.


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