Archive for the ‘DUI law’ tag

Mother Charged in DUI That Injured Nine Children

August 14th, 2013 at 2:31 pm

Tonica Cornwell, 30, was driving south on I-57 when she lost control of her vehicle, veered off the road, and rolled up on a grassy embankment near 99th Street. The accident resulted in the injuring of nine children, and Cornwell, who was driving a Chevy Suburban at the time of the incident, was charged with DUI immediately. The Suburban was carrying 11 people at the time of the crash, according to NBC Chicago Local News, and Cornwell is the mother of several of the children who were injured. When the Suburban rolled up on the embankment, it came to rest on the roof. “Witnesses told police the vehicle was ‘traveling at a high rate of speed’ when it rolled into the embankment,” according to NBC Chicago. NBC reports that, “in total two adults and nine children, ages 3 to 14, were transported to area hospitals with non life-threatening injuries.”  Mother Charged in DUI That Injured Nine Children IMAGE

The children involved in this accident are lucky, as is Cornwell, that the injuries sustained weren’t worse. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, “of the 1,210 traffic deaths among children ages 0 to 14 years in 2010, 211 (17 percent) involved an alcohol-impaired driver.” More than half of all child fatalities due to DUI occurred when the child was in the car with the drunk driver, not in a car that was piloted by a different driver. In Illinois, according to the Illinois State Police Department, any DUI crash which results in “great bodily harm or permanent disfigurement” carries the weight of a Class 4 felony, and an Aggravated DUI charge. Punishment for this type of charge includes a “minimum of one-year loss of full driving privileges; mandatory ten days imprisonment or 480 hours community service; possible imprisonment for up to 12 years; a maximum fine of $25,000.”

Cornwell is facing other charges as well, considering that seven of the passengers in the Suburban were not wearing seatbelts, according to Chicago CBS Local. In addition to DUI, Cornwell has been charged with “nine counts of child endangerment… [and] also issued traffic ticket for child restraint violations.”

If you or someone you know has been charged in an accident such as this, don’t go through it alone. Contact an experienced Chicago DUI attorney today.

Cameras Added to Ignition Interlock Devices in IL

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.

NicoleSupporters 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!


Image courtesy of xedos4/Freedigitalphotos

DUIs and DWIs in Illinois

May 7th, 2013 at 4:21 pm

If you have been drinking any alcohol at all, it is safest to not take a chance in driving afterwards. Many people think that they feel fine, then end up getting pulled over and getting in more trouble than it’s worth. Your blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) only has to be at 0.08% for you to be considered legally drunk, at which point it is illegal for you to drive. It is possible, however, for someone to be cited for a BAC as low as 0.05% also, depending on the behavior and the officer’s judgment.

LucyRegardless of legal trouble, it is also important to remember that driving with alcohol in your system increases your risk of being in a car accident. “With a BAC of just 0.06, you double your chances of being involved in a fatal accident,” according to the Illinois DMV.

If you are cited for a BAC of 0.08% or more, your penalty is stated within the Statutory Summary Suspension. Your license will be immediately suspended for 180 days. You will, however, be given a receipt that allows you to continue driving for enough time to fight your arrest and suspension. Forty-six days after your arrest, the suspension kicks into effect, disallowing you to drive. If you are cited for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, as a first offense, your license will be suspended for a year. If you are under 21, it will be suspended for 2 years. With the help of a DUI attorney, you can petition for a restricted license, which may allow you to get to and from work.

If you are pulled over and asked to take a test to determine your BAC, your Statutory Suspension penalties become more extreme. If you refuse a test, the license suspension will be one year for a first offense and three years for a second offense. If you accept the test, the suspension is only 6 months for first offense, and 12 months for a second offense.

Along with a suspended license, you will also receive a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID) installed in your car after your first DUI offense in order to continue driving at all. The installation fee is about $100, and there is also a monthly fee for rental and monitoring of $110.

If you have been caught driving after having one too many drinks, contact an Illinois DUI attorney. Ramsell & Associates can help you fight your DUI charges in Illinois today.

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