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Rolling Meadows, IL criminal defense attorney DUI checkpoint

Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol (DUI) is a serious criminal offense that not only puts yourself in danger but risks the lives of others as well. This is why law enforcement puts so much effort into reducing the number of drivers who commit DUI. One of the techniques police officers have found that is effective in catching DUI offenders is by using sobriety checkpoints. Although the constitutionality of sobriety checkpoints has been debated, they have repeatedly been deemed legal and not in violation of the Fourth Amendment by the U.S. Supreme Court. If you are facing DUI charges as a result of being stopped at a sobriety checkpoint, it is crucial that you understand your rights.

How DUI Checkpoints Work

Law enforcement personnel are permitted to conduct sobriety checkpoints at any time or place of their choosing, but there are a few rules that they must follow in order for a checkpoint to be legal. If police plan to establish a checkpoint, they are required to inform the public of the time and place of the checkpoint. They are not allowed to conduct a checkpoint at a location where it would cause a traffic jam or put drivers in danger. They must also use signs or lights to signal to motorists that they are entering a DUI checkpoint. In addition, all police officers and vehicles must be clearly marked.

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Rolling Meadows, IL criminal defense attorney marijuana DUI

As of January 1, 2020, Illinois became the 11th state to legalize the recreational use of marijuana in the United States. Even though residents and visitors who are 21 or older can legally purchase and consume cannabis, there are certain restrictions on the amount that can be bought and where it can be ingested. The increased presence of marijuana in the state has had some people wondering whether or not they can be charged with driving under the influence (DUI) if they are caught driving a vehicle while under the influence of cannabis. The short answer is yes.

Marijuana DUI Laws in Illinois

Under Illinois law, you can be charged with DUI if you operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, intoxicating compounds, methamphetamines, or “other drugs, including cannabis prescribed for medical purposes.” You are likely aware of the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) limit of .08, but there is also such a limit for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in your blood when you are driving a vehicle. In Illinois, a person is considered intoxicated if they are measured as having 5 nanograms or more of THC per milliliter of blood or 10 nanograms or more per milliliter of another bodily substance.

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Arlington Heights, IL DUI defense attorney

When you are pulled over because a police officer suspects that you are driving under the influence (DUI), you will probably be asked to take a breathalyzer test to determine your blood alcohol content (BAC). In Illinois, you are legally considered to be driving under the influence of alcohol if your BAC is 0.08 percent or above. What you may not know, however, is that you can still actually be arrested and charged with DUI even if your BAC is below the legal limit. The best way to avoid a DUI arrest and conviction is to understand your rights as a citizen of Illinois and avoid putting yourself into risky situations. If you have been arrested for DUI, a skilled criminal defense lawyer can be an invaluable asset.

Alcohol Use Under the Legal Limit

The legal limit anywhere in the United States to be considered intoxicated is 0.08 percent, but that does not mean that you cannot be charged with DUI if your BAC is below that. Illinois law states that a person may not drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle if his or her BAC is 0.08 or more OR if he or she is under the influence of alcohol. This open-ended law allows police officers to use their judgment and determine whether a person is incapable of safely operating a vehicle, regardless of his or her actual BAC.

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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, IL DUI defense attorney

Across the country, arrests for driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol are being taken more and more seriously because of the dangers that drinking and driving poses to everyone on the road. In Illinois, DUI laws are relatively strict, and an arrest can result in serious consequences, even if you are ultimately not convicted. It can be an intimidating experience if you are arrested for driving under the influence. Many people do not know what to expect after they are arrested and resort to gathering and trusting the information they find on the Internet. While some of this advice may be correct, you should talk with a skilled Illinois DUI defense lawyer to make sure you have all the facts.

Expect a License Suspension

There are two sides to almost every DUI arrest, even if it is your first offense: the criminal side and the administrative side. This means you face both criminal charges and administrative penalties for driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. An arrest will not automatically result in criminal penalties for DUI. For that, you will have to go through the legal process. You will, however, face administrative penalties for being arrested in most situations.

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