Archive for the ‘Chicago DUI’ tag
December 6th, 2013 at 10:42 am
The holidays can be a busy time for local law enforcement when it comes to dealing with drunk driving and DUI-related crashes. During the Thanksgiving holiday, for example, Elgin police officers were out in force, participating in what was billed as a “No Refusal Weekend,” according to the Chicago Tribune. The initiative enforced a policy that required all persons arrested for impaired driving to submit to chemical testing “to determine if charges for Driving Under the Influence are appropriate,” according to the Chicago Tribune. The crackdown was part of a statewide initiative known as “Click It Or Ticket” and “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaigns.
It wasn’t only in Elgin that Chicago-area police officers were on alert for DUIs in the area. According to a press release issued by the Lake County Sheriff’s Office the week before Thanksgiving, “Illinois State Police and nearly 250 local law enforcement agencies” participated in a crack down on seat belt law violators and conducted roving DUI patrols in prime hours around the holidays. These roving patrols are thought to catch DUI drivers much more frequently and reliably than holiday sobriety checkpoints. According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, “while traffic snarls are touted by many traffic safety advocates as necessary to catch drunk drivers, their effectiveness leaves much to be desired.”
The Review-Journal cites statistics from all over the country to purport that roving checkpoints, such as those used over Thanksgiving weekend in Chicago, are a better option to catch drunk drivers. In Ohio, for instance, “police conducted 135 sobriety checkpoints between January 1 and September of this year, but more than a third of those checkpoints yielded zero drunk driving arrests.” These checkpoints ended up accounting for less than 1 percent of “all those stopped for impaired driving,” the Review-Journal states.
One reason for this could be because people are able to alert one another to the possibility of a police checkpoint. This isn’t the case with roving checkpoints, such as those employed in the Chicago area over Thanksgiving. With the anticipated (but not yet evaluated) success of these roving checkpoints, it is expected that the Chicago Police Department will continue in this vein throughout the holiday season.
If you or someone you know is facing DUI charges that resulted from a roving checkpoint or any other situation, don’t go through it alone. Contact an experienced DUI attorney today.
December 3rd, 2013 at 10:37 am
A 25-year-old man was charged with “aggravated battery to a peace officers, aggravated fleeing, driving under the influence, aggravated unlawful use of a weapon, aggravated battery, drug possession, and a slew of traffic violations,” according to CBS Chicago. According to CBS, the incident occurred in mid-November, when the man attempted to flee police officers near the University of Illinois at Chicago “and dragged an officer more than 20 feet with his SUV, according to police reports.” A Cook County judge held the man, Matthew Louis Jr., in lieu of $100,000 bail. Louis was not able to appear in court because he was instead at Stroger Hospital with a fractured hip, according to CBS.
The incident occurred when police responded to a call of shots fired. They came upon Louis’s SUV and noticed a “firearm behind the passenger seat, according to a police report, and removed the passenger from the car.” When police ordered Louis to step out of the car, he instead accelerated, and unintentionally dragged a police officer who had been at the scene more than 20 feet. Louis only stopped the vehicle when he hit a large concrete divider and the SUV was no longer operable. According to CBS, Louis told police that, “he had been drinking a lot while at a party” and “knows he shouldn’t drive drunk.”
While it seems an extreme case, Louis isn’t alone in that he attempted to flee police officers and instead ended up dragging one while trying to outrun DUI charges. Earlier this year in Phoenix, for example, a police officer “was injured… after being dragged two blocks by a man suspected of driving drunk,” according to ABC 15 News. In this incident, the officer suffered a head injury, and another officer was struck while attempting to stop the drunk driver. It was not yet announced what injuries the Chicago officer that Louis allegedly dragged sustained in the recent incident.
If you or someone you know is pulled over for drunk driving, it’s best to allow testing and comply with law enforcement. In this scenario, it’s much more likely that the charges will be resolved with less consequence than in a situation such as the one Louis is now facing. If you or someone you know has been charged with drunk driving, the most important first step is to contact an experienced DUI attorney. Contact Ramsell & Associates for a consultation today.
August 8th, 2013 at 12:18 pm
Late July finally brought the day of reckoning for Daniel Clark, the 32-year-old who in February of last year killed Frank Caruso in a DUI crash that rocked Chicago’s Eisenhower Expressway. Clark pleaded guilty in court this month to charges of drunk driving, according to ABC Local News. “Prosecutors say Clark admitted to having five glasses of wine before getting behind the wheel. They say his blood alcohol level was .249, more than three times the legal limit,” reports ABC. In a sad twist of fate, when he was killed Caruso was in a squad car, having narrowly avoided a different accident just minutes before the fatal crash. Caruso had just gotten off the phone with his girlfriend, assuring her that he was okay after his car slid on the icy highway, when Clark barreled into the back of the squad car where Caruso was sitting and waiting for a tow.
Blurred with his five glasses of wine, Clark did not manage to see the lights flashing ahead of him. Clark plowed into the back of the car at a high speed, killing Caruso and injuring the trooper. “Clark,” according to ABC, “was charged with two counts of aggravated driving under the influence.” The trooper was also badly hurt in the crash, but no update was available as to his condition at the time of Clark’s guilty plea.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and as reported by the Century Council, “32,885 people died in traffic crashes in 2010 in the United States (latest figures available), including an estimated 10,228 people who died in drunk driving crashes.” That figure amounts to a whopping 31 percent of all traffic fatalities. Despite this seemingly high number, drunk driving fatalities are actually down significantly from the early 1980s—“drunk driving fatalities have decreased 52 percent from 21,113 in 1982,” according to the Century Council.
If you or someone you know has been accused or charged with drunk driving, don’t wait to contact an attorney. Contact an experienced Chicago-area DUI lawyer today.