In Illinois, Is A DUI Charge Automatically Upgraded If The Person Blew Double The Limit?
Yes, it would. If someone blew a 0.16, which is double the legal limit here, they could still get the court supervision but there would be a mandatory fine of a minimum $1250. There would be a mandatory 100 hours of community service that would be ordered on top of it. The person would end up with the stiffer fine and community or public service. Other than that it would not matter if it was 0.16 or 0.17 or 0.25, although the higher the result, the less likely the person would be to get the court supervision and the more likely they would be to get jail time because they would view the person as a driving time bomb who would probably kill somebody soon.
What Charges Would Someone Face If They Were Charged With A DUI And Caused Either Bodily Injury Or Even Death?
This would be called aggravated DUI with personal injury and/or death and depending on how severely injured the victim was, it could be either a class 2 or class 4 felony. A class 4 felony would carry 1 to 3 years in prison as a possible sentence. It would also be probational so they could get probation which would involve probation terms, including work release, periodic imprisonment and local county time up to 6 months. If the accident caused death, it would be a special class 2 felony which would normally carry 3 to 7 years, but, in this case, it would basically be double. It would be like a reckless homicide, which is in the same class 2 and it would possibly be 3 to 14 years. Depending on how many prior DUI’s the person might have, it might be a non-probational aggravated DUI anyway. Someone with 3 prior DUIs, and then the class 2 felony would be an aggravated DUI class 2 but it would be non probational, meaning if the person got convicted or it did not get reduced, then they would go to prison for 3 to 7 years.
By the time someone got a third conviction or violation, the chances would be pretty good that the person had been driving drunk a lot of his life and was lucky he did not kill someone before. It would be understandable if the person was careless enough to get one DUI because everybody makes mistakes. It would be questionable to get two, and at the third DUI, the person would have made their own bed. They would be becoming a risk to people, and I would not feel bad for the person because there would be the possibility they may run over my neighbors or my kids, which is why I would not have any compassion for the person. I do this for a living, but I would not want someone running down my neighbor’s or my kids because they just keep getting in the car and driving drunk. No one would feel pity for them, which is why it is a non-probational offense and nobody cares.
In Illinois, if someone had over 6 DUIs, it would turn into a class X felony which would be a mandatory 6 to 30 years. One of my clients who had that had a really close case. I got the plea down to class 3, where he was going to take 2 years, but he refused to take it. I explained to him that he would get 6 to 30 and it would be likely he would not end up with just 6 years. This was his 7th DUI. He said he could not afford to not be around for his kids. I explained to him that he would be back in 9 months and if he did it the other way he would get found guilty. He caught 9 years because he would not listen to me. He went with some other attorney, but nobody feels bad for him because it was his 7th one, so we can only imagine how many times he had been driving home drunk.
If They Look At It As Just A Traffic Violation Would It Still Go To The Criminal Side?
The person would usually be given the benefit of the doubt if it was a firsttime offense because everybody can make a mistake unless there was a personal injury or something that was an aggravating factor. If the person was caught driving home from something and they had one too many drinks, then they would be given the pass. They would have to attend DUI school, which would cost probably anywhere between $6000 and $10,000. Hopefully, the person would have learned their lesson, and at least they would be able to keep driving, keep working and doing everything else. The penalties would get a lot stiffer very quickly if the person kept offending.
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