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Rolling Meadows, IL criminal defense attorney aggravated DUI

One of the things that police patrols are constantly doing is looking for signs of impaired drivers on the roads. Impaired and drunk driving are responsible for many traffic accidents and deaths each year in the United States. According to the latest data available from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were more than 10,500 deaths from drunk driving accidents in this country in 2018 alone. Any type of DUI charge is serious, but charges are increased when a DUI incident results in the injury or death of another person. In these cases, the impact a DUI conviction could have on your life could be severe, so it is important to understand the consequences you may face in Illinois.

DUI Resulting in Injury

If you are charged with a DUI and that incident resulted in the bodily harm, injury or death of another person, it is likely that you will be charged with a felony DUI. In Illinois, all felony DUIs are referred to as aggravated DUIs. If you were charged with a DUI and you caused an accident that resulted in great bodily harm, permanent disability, or disfigurement to another person, you will be charged with a Class 4 felony. This means that you could face between one and four years in prison, up to $25,000 in fines, and a minimum two-year driver’s license revocation.

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Rolling Meadows, IL reckless homicide attorney

As most Illinoisans know, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol (DUI) laws in the state are strict. You can be convicted of a DUI in Illinois if you are driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of more than 0.08 percent or if other evidence points to you being impaired while driving. Even a first-time conviction for DUI in Illinois can result in fines between $75 and $2,500, up to one year in jail, and a one-year driver’s license suspension. Those penalties can change, however, depending on the circumstances of your case. In Illinois, any DUI offense that results in felony charges is classified as an aggravated DUI. One of the most serious aggravated DUI charges is called reckless homicide.

What Is Reckless Homicide?

In Illinois, reckless homicide occurs when a person using a motor vehicle unintentionally kills another person because of actions that were likely to cause death or bodily harm to another person. Under normal circumstances, actions that could be considered reckless include those such as speeding or causing the vehicle to become airborne. If a driver is intoxicated, and he or she caused the death of another person while driving, the fact that the motorist was under the influence in itself constitutes reckless driving.

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Arlington Heights DUI defense lawyer One of the most common criminal charges in the United States is a DUI. Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have shown that 11,000 deaths resulting from traffic accidents also involved an alcohol-impaired driver. In Illinois alone, more than 400 deaths occur each year from drunk driving. Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is dangerous, and the punishment for doing so can be severe. Most DUI situations involve misdemeanor charges, but those charges can quickly escalate to felony charges under certain circumstances.

First-Offense DUI Penalties

Under Illinois law, a first offense for a DUI is classified as a Class A misdemeanor, the highest classification for a misdemeanor. If a person is convicted of DUI and has no prior DUI charges, he or she will still face up to one year in jail, up to $2,500 in fines and up to two years of probation. Additionally, a first-time DUI offender may also be subject to mandatory minimum penalties and community service.

Aggravated DUI

In Illinois, any DUI charge that is classified as a felony charge is referred to as an aggravated DUI. With an aggravated DUI charge, any mandatory minimum prison sentence or community service cannot be suspended or reduced. If a person is sentenced to probation or conditional discharge, they also must serve at least 480 hours of community service, or they must agree to be imprisoned for ten days.

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Rolling Meadows, IL License Suspension Lawyer

In the state of Illinois, DUI charges are taken very seriously. Prosecutors and law enforcement typically punish offenders to the fullest extent of the law due to the risk drunk drivers pose to the public. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were 10,874 deaths resulting from car crashes involving drivers with a blood-alcohol level of .08 or higher in 2017. This means 29 percent of all fatal traffic accidents were caused by drivers who were under the influence of alcohol. 

Repeat offenders are punished even more harshly, which does not bode well for an Illinois man who is accused of committing his third DUI and his 12th offense of driving with a suspended driver’s license.

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Rolling Meadows aggravated DUI defense attorneyIt does not matter what situation you are in when you are charged with a DUI - they are all serious charges. However, if you are found to be driving while intoxicated when a child is present in the vehicle, your punishments will be much more strict. In Illinois, penalties for DUI increase if a child under the age of 16 years old is riding in the vehicle - but it does not stop there. In addition to DUI charges, you can also face other criminal violations, such as child endangerment. You could also be charged with more serious crimes if the child suffered an injury because of you. 

DUI With a Minor in the Vehicle

According to the Illinois Vehicle Code, a first conviction for DUI is a Class A misdemeanor, which comes with a loss of driving privileges for one year, a possible sentence of up to one year in jail, and a maximum fine of $2,500. If you had a child in your vehicle while you were driving under the influence, that sentence is a mandatory minimum of six months in jail, a mandatory minimum $1,000 fine, regardless of your ability to pay, and 25 days of community service in a program that benefits children.

If you were convicted of DUI, and there was a minor under the age of 16 in the vehicle who suffered bodily injury because of an accident you caused, the penalties increase. Even a first offense is considered a Class 4 felony aggravated DUI. This means that in addition to any other criminal or administrative punishments, a mandatory $2,500 fine is imposed, and 25 days of community service in a program that benefits children is required.

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