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Lake County Driver's License & DUI Law Blog

Illinois man faces 14 years in prison for DUI charges

If you've been charged with a DUI, then you may face time in prison if you're convicted. Typically, your first offense will be seen as a misdemeanor, but if you've been charged before and convicted, then you could be facing more serious punishments. A July 7 report shows how serious punishments for DUIs can get, especially when they lead to crashes or fatalities.

In Woodstock, Illinois, a man has recently been found guilty of DUI charges for driving drunk. The charges reportedly described him as the driver in a crash that resulted in the death of four people in 1999 who had once again gotten behind the wheel when he was not sober.

Trucker's wrong turn lands him in hot water

With one wrong turn onto a narrow road, a trucker in Iowa may have put his career in danger. He was reportedly following directions from his GPS device, which just about every trucker relies on for their interstate trips, when it directed him to a small road. He was lost and evidently listened to the directions without second-guessing them. 

However, the path he turned onto was too narrow and small for large commercial vehicles and the truck rolled over and fell on the side of the road with the trucker inside. Thankfully, the trucker didn't get hurt, but his truck was seriously damaged and now the trucker's commercial driver's license could be in jeopardy.

Boaters may face harsher consequences in Illinois

You know that if you drive drunk, there's every possibility that you could lose your license. That fact hasn't really factored into boating licenses as seriously in the past, but now the laws are becoming harsher. According to some claims, Illinois is creating new boating laws that could affect boaters by increasing punishments for driving dangerously. This is being done partially due to the fact that so many people have died in boating accidents recently. So far, in 2014 there have been 16 boating facilities.

If you've had your license taken away, you know how important it is to have that revoked driver's license returned to you, so you can get back to boating like you enjoy. If these new laws kick in, that may become difficult. For instance, it's claimed that if your license is taken away due to charges for boating while intoxicated or other boating traffic violations and you're caught driving, your boat could be taken away by authorities.

Illinois law outlaws police quotas on traffic violations

A lot of Illinois drivers will have a reason to be happy following Gov. Pat Quinn's signing of a ban on traffic ticket quotas. The law was overwhelmingly approved by state legislators. It does not just apply to traffic violations. No enforcement division of Illinois state, local or county government will be permitted to institute quotas applying to citations of any kind.

Proponents of the new law say that it should improve the trust and confidence that Illinois citizens have in state and local police forces. One politician who supported the measure said that quotas on traffic tickets serve to undermine the confidence that citizens should have in police officers. They also say it will make the jobs of officers safer and more rewarding. Police officers' unions see the legislation as a positive step forward.

Police ask people to slow down over Fourth of July in Illinois

Recently, the Illinois State Police asked for people to slow down during the upcoming Fourth of July weekend. It's possible for a commercial driver's license to be lost if a driver is caught speeding or committing other traffic violations repeatedly. Illinois will be having a statewide crackdown. The report from July 1 states that since 2007, 77 motorists have died during the Independence Day holiday. In 2013, there were 18 people killed.

Police are asking that motorists slow down over the holiday, and they will be participating in an Independence Day Click It or Ticket and Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over joint operation. During the period between June 23 and July 6, officers will be stopping anyone who breaks one of the laws regarding driving while impaired, seat belts or other driving regulations.

Plea deal effectively protects bishop's criminal record

Driver's license suspensions can be detrimental to a person's career and family. Without a license, a person can struggle enormously when it comes to getting to work, bringing kids to day care or just running simple errands. Public transportation is not always available or convenient and the kindness of friends and family members willing to help a loved one out may only last so long. This is why it can be crucial to protect a license and avoid suspension if at all possible.

A recent situation involving slow mail, a minor traffic offense and the threat of a stained criminal record illustrates just how serious it can be to drive without a license. A bishop in another state was facing criminal charges in addition to the other penalties of a license suspension after he was pulled over by police for failing to use his turn signal while driving one evening. 

Law passed in Illinois bans ticket quotas

Readers in Illinois may be very interested to learn that a new law was passed recently that bans the use of quotas for police in this state. The use of ticket quotas has been a controversial topic and has had vocal support on each side of the issue.

On one hand, there is the argument that a quota system is an effective way of measuring an officer's performance. On the other hand, quotas have been linked to inappropriate citations, motorist anxiety and strained relationships between police officers and the public. However, the matter has been resolved now that Gov. Pat Quinn has signed legislation banning the use of quotas.

Plea bargains and how they can affect DUI charges

When a person is arrested and charged with a drunk driving offense, it can be easy to simply assume the worst: jail time, license revocation and a permanent stain on a criminal and driving record.

However, in many cases, people who are facing charges are able to negotiate and have their charges either dismissed or reduced. Those who do this successfully can avoid the harshest penalties and protect their records and their futures. This is what pop star Justin Bieber was able to do recently. He was facing charges stemming from a Jan. 23 incident when he was arrested for suspected DUI, driving without a valid license and resisting arrest.

Man with suspended license in Illinois records police chase

Every person makes a mistake or bad decision at some point when they are driving. Maybe they drive too fast or get behind the wheel after having a bit too much to drink. In most cases, however, people are remorseful and genuinely concerned about how a slip in judgment will affect their lives and driving record.

However, there are also people who fail to take seriously the consequences of traffic violations and dangerous driving. Those people in this category can face serious penalties for breaking laws and putting other lives in danger. Rather than be in this category, folks across Lake County should consider speaking with an attorney to confront the charges they face and take responsibility for their actions.

How effective are bans on cell phones behind the wheel?

Drivers all across Illinois and surrounding states should be aware that using a hand-held phone while driving can be very distracting and dangerous. In states like Illinois, which has some of the strictest distracted driving laws in the country, the behavior is enough to warrant a traffic stop and citation. 

States nearby are following our lead and adopting similarly harsh laws, but in Iowa the move to make the use of a hand-held phone while driving a primary offense has not gained much steam. According to reports, this could be due, in part, to the argument that the state's ban on just texting and driving has failed to reduce the number of car accidents caused by distraction.

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