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IL DUI lawyerGetting pulled over by a police officer while you are driving can be a stressful ordeal. However, even if you believe the police officer made a mistake by making a traffic stop, it is important to remain calm and not lose your temper. If you do not keep your composure, the situation could end up escalating and instead of a potential traffic violation, you could be facing criminal charges.

Things to Avoid Saying to an Officer During a Traffic Stop

During the traffic stop, the officer will ask you for your license and registration in order to confirm your identity and conduct a background check to make sure there are no outstanding warrants or other issues. Some stops may resolve quickly, while in other situations, it may feel as if the officer is extending the stop unreasonably. No matter what the situation is, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Rude comments - Once the officer has conducted the background check, he or she may also ask you questions, such as where you are driving to or from. You are under no obligation to answer those questions, however, how you choose to answer can make a difference. Although it is not against the law to make a rude comment to a police officer, doing so could cause the officer to become more inclined to find some reason to place you under arrest. Police cannot arrest you simply for making an insulting comment, but they can claim your behavior was uncooperative or created probable cause to search your vehicle.
  • Confessions - Under no circumstances should you confess to a crime when a police officer pulls you over. For example, if a cop stops your vehicle because he or she is suspicious that you were driving under the influence of alcohol, you should not admit to anything. Even if you are guilty of the crime the officer is accusing you of, you should not give any kind of statement to the police until you have spoken with a criminal defense attorney.
  • Breathalyzer tests - If a police officer pulls you over because he or she believes you were driving drunk, you will be asked to take a breathalyzer test to measure your blood alcohol concentration (BAC). There are a few factors to keep in mind before deciding to submit to that test. Illinois has an implied consent law. When you were issued a driver’s license, your acceptance meant you were consenting to submit to a breathalyzer test if requested to do so by law enforcement. While there is no law that says you must take the test, refusing to do so means an automatic summary suspension of your license, even if you are ultimately found not guilty of DUI in criminal court. A first offense is a loss of license for one year. Second and subsequent refusals are for five years. There is no right or wrong answer on whether a driver should submit to a breathalyzer test and ultimately depends on the circumstances of the traffic stop, whether the driver has been drinking, and whether the driver has any prior DUI convictions.

Contact an Arlington Heights, IL Criminal Lawyer

If you were recently pulled over and arrested by a police officer, you should speak to a Rolling Meadows, IL criminal attorney. Scott F. Anderson, Attorney at Law will assess your case and inform you of your legal options. Call 847-253-3400 today to schedule a free consultation.

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IL defense lawyerIn Illinois, a person’s driver’s license may be revoked for several different offenses. Conviction of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI), drag racing, aggravated fleeing and eluding police, and any felony offense involving a motor vehicle may lead to revocation of your driver’s license. If your driver’s license is revoked, you cannot drive any vehicle legally. However, you may be able to regain your driving privileges by attending a driver’s license reinstatement hearing.

Formal vs. Information Hearings

Informal driver’s license reinstatement hearings are held at various locations throughout Illinois. During an informal hearing, you will be interviewed about the reasons for the revocation, your driving record and criminal history, any drug and alcohol treatment you have attended, and the type of lifestyle changes you have made to avoid unsafe driving in the future.

Formal hearings only take place at one of the four Secretary of State locations in Illinois. A formal hearing is like a trial. The hearing officer and an attorney for the Secretary of State will place you under oath and ask you a series of questions. You will be asked to demonstrate that you have taken the steps required to avoid subsequent offenses and become a safe driver. This often includes showing evidence that you have successfully completed drug or alcohol treatment. In both formal and informal hearings, the hearing officer considers the arguments and evidence presented and makes a recommendation to the Secretary of State.

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IL DUI lawyerBeing charged with a DUI in Illinois comes with various consequences. A DUI is a criminal charge that can carry serious jail time, a driver’s license revocation or suspension, and extensive fines. After a DUI arrest, one of the first things that must happen before anything else can happen is a drug and alcohol evaluation. This evaluation is intended to determine whether or not a person has a drug and/or alcohol dependency issue and must be completed before sentencing can occur or before you can be granted driving relief during your period of suspension or revocation. If you have been arrested or charged with DUI, you should speak to an Illinois DUI defense attorney.

Evaluation Results and Additional Requirements

The evaluation will include a history of the person’s relationship with drugs/alcohol, their driving record, and a corroboration of the information from a family member or spouse. All of this information will be used to determine whether or not the person’s drug and/or alcohol abuse is a current and/or future risk to the safety of others. The information will also be used to classify the person’s relationship with drugs and/or alcohol and determine what further requirements must be met.

  • Minimal risk: Those who are found to only be a minimal risk to society are required to complete at least 10 hours of DUI risk education.
  • Moderate risk: If a person is found to be at moderate risk, they must also complete DUI risk education, but in addition, they must complete at least 12 hours of an early intervention program and successfully complete a substance abuse program at the recommendation of a licensed evaluator.
  • Significant risk: If a person is found to be at significant risk, they will be required to complete DUI risk education, in addition to at least 20 hours of substance abuse treatment and adherence to the treatment plan.
  • High risk: Anyone who is found to be high risk will have to attend at least 75 hours of substance abuse treatment and continued participation in the program after discharge. They may also have to provide proof of abstinence from drugs and/or alcohol.

Contact an Arlington Heights, IL DUI Defense Attorney

Getting charged with DUI can be a scary experience. If you have been accused of DUI, you should speak with a skilled Rolling Meadows, IL DUI defense attorney. Scott F. Anderson, Attorney at Law is here to help you through any criminal case you may be facing, including DUI charges. To schedule a free consultation, call our office today at 847-253-3400.

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IL defense lawyerDespite the rights given to us in the Constitution, not all individuals are treated equally when it comes to the criminal justice system. The criminal justice system was created with the intention that everyone would be treated as equals to give everyone a fair chance at life and liberty. Unfortunately, that is not always the reality. In many cases, smaller minority groups and even juveniles involved in the criminal justice system are unfairly treated. Fortunately, steps are being taken each day to help combat some of the injustices that currently exist. In recent weeks, the state of Illinois has become the first state to prohibit police officers from using deception or lying when interrogating a juvenile suspect.

Changes in the Law

When police are investigating a crime, one of the many tools that they use to do it is interrogations. In recent weeks, interrogations have been in the media, specifically, the ability of questioning officers to mislead juvenile suspects. Now, law enforcement officials in the state of Illinois are prohibited from using deceptive tactics when interrogating young suspects. Police often use deceptive practices, such as lying, conveying fabricated information, and falsely promising leniency for confessing against juveniles. However, under the new law, any evidence obtained through these means will not be admissible in court.

Deception and False Confessions

The criminal justice system has long recognized a need for differentiation between adult and juvenile offenders. The first juvenile court in the country was created in Cook County in 1899. Since then, nearly every jurisdiction in the country has some form of a juvenile justice system. According to the Innocence Project, juveniles are especially vulnerable to false confessions and are actually between two and three times more likely to give a false confession than an adult. In around 30 percent of cases involving wrongful convictions overturned by DNA evidence, deceptive interrogation practices were a contributing factor.

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IL DUI defense lawyerWhen you are accused of driving under the influence (DUI), there are various ways the charge could affect your life. One of the most significant ways a DUI charge can affect you is by limiting your ability to legally drive. When you are arrested for suspicion of DUI, your driver’s license can be suspended simply for failing a chemical test to determine your blood alcohol content (BAC). If you refuse to submit to a chemical test, penalties can become more severe and the license suspension can become even longer. In addition, any person who is convicted of DUI faces even more time on their license suspension, with the possibility of it being revoked. Not being able to drive or get you or your family from place to place can put a lot of strain on your daily life. Fortunately, there are things you can do to get your driving privileges back after a DUI arrest and/or conviction.

Driving Permits During Suspension

As previously mentioned, if you are arrested for failing or refusing to take a chemical test to determine BAC, you face an administrative driver’s license suspension. For failing a chemical test, the suspension is only six months, however, if you refuse to take the test, the suspension lasts for up to one year. In addition, you can also request a driving permit under some circumstances during the suspension period.

Two driving permits are available for those who have lost their license because of DUI-related reasons: a monitoring device driving permit (MDDP) or a restricted driving permit (RDP). The type of permit you can receive depends on the circumstances surrounding your case. Typically, a first-time DUI offender can apply to receive an MDDP, while other offenders will have to apply for an RDP. Either way, both permits require the installation of a breath-alcohol ignition interlock device (BAIID) on any vehicle you drive while you have the permit.

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