Locating A DUI In The State Of Illinois

Per Illinois' State Law, a DUI occurs when “driving while under the influence of alcohol, other drug or drugs, intoxicating compound or compounds or any combination thereof.” Specifically, the law states that a DUI can occur when a person drives or is in control of the vehicle while:

  • The alcohol concentration in the person’s blood, other bodily substance, or breath is .08 or more based on a breathalyzer sanctioned by state law.

  • Under the influence of alcohol.

  • Under the influence of any intoxicating compound or combination of intoxicating compounds to a degree that renders the person incapable of driving safely.

  • Under the influence of any combination of drugs that results in the person being incapable of safely driving.

  • Under the combined effect of drugs and alcohol that results in the person being incapable of safely driving.

  • There is ANY amount of drug, substance, or compound in the person’s breath, blood, other bodily substance, or urine resulting from the unlawful use or consumption of a controlled substance listed in the Illinois Controlled Substances Act, and intoxicating compound listed in the Use of Intoxicating Compounds Act, or methamphetamine as listed in the Methamphetamine Control and Community Protection Act.

  • The person has, within two hours of driving or being in actual physical control of a vehicle, a tetrahydrocannabinol concentration in the person’s whole blood or other bodily substance as defined in paragraph 6 of subsection “a” of Section 11-501.2 of this code. This paragraph does not apply to the lawful consumption of cannabis by a qualifying patient with a valid Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act, unless that person is impaired by the use of cannabis.

Penalties for DUIs in Illinois are severe, and grow more so as repeated incidents occur. They can also increase in severity under certain circumstances.

 

Standard DUI: When a person commits a DUI, or found to be driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

  • A person who is found to have violated a condition of Illinois’ drunk driving statute is guilty of a Class A Misdemeanor.

  • A person who violates a condition of Illinois’ drunk driving statute a second time is guilty of a Class A Misdemeanors. They are also sentenced a minimum of five days in prison or jail, and 240 hours of community service.

 

Special Circumstance: When a person commits a DUI while transporting a child or while having an excessively high BAC.

  • A person who violates a condition of Illinois’ drunk driving statute while transporting someone under the age of 16 faces six months of imprisonment, fines of at least $1,000, and 25 days of community service in a program aimed at benefiting children.

  • A person who violates a condition of Illinois’ drunk driving statute, and is found to have a BAC of .16 or higher is subject to an additional penalty of 100 hours of community service, and a fine of at least $500. If this person has a BAC of .15 or higher on their second offense, the penalty is raised to two days imprisonment, and a fine of at least $1,250.

 

Aggravated DUI: When a person commits a third DUI, commits a second DUI while transporting someone under the age of 16, commits a DUI while driving a school bus with passengers, commits a DUI that results in an accident that causes great bodily harm, or not great bodily harm to someone under the age of 16, commits a DUI that results in an accident that causes death, commits a DUI while speeding in a school speed zone that is in effect, commits a DUI after having committed a reckless homicide charge relating to a DUI in other states, commits a DUI during a period where their driving privileges are suspended or revoked, commits a DUI while driving without a license, commits a DUI with knowledge that the vehicle in operation does not have liability insurance, or commits a DUI while driving a vehicle for hire.

  • A person found guilty of committing an Aggravated DUI is guilty of a Class 4 Felony. A person found guilty of a third or fourth violation of Aggravated DUI is guilty of a Class 2 Felony. A fourth or subsequent violation does not allow probation or conditional discharge. A person found guilty of a fifth violation is guilty of a Class 1 Felony. A person found guilty of a sixth violation is guilty of a Class X Felony.

  • Additionally, a person found guilty of a DUI after having committed a reckless homicide charge relating to a DUI in other states is guilty of a Class 3 felony for which probation or conditional discharge may not an option. If probation of conditional discharge is offered, the offender must complete 480 hours of community service or 10 days of imprisonment.

  • Additionally, a person found guilty of a second DUI while transporting someone under the age of 16 is guilty of a Class 2 Felony, must pay a minimum $2,500 fine, and must serve 25 days of community service in a program benefiting children. If the person under 16 suffered bodily harm, but not great bodily harm, the mandatory fine is increased to $5,000.

  • If at the time of a third violation of Aggravated DUI, the offender is found to have a BAC of .16 or higher, they are additionally punishable with at least 90 days in prison and fines of at least $2,500. If this is a fourth, fifth, or sixth violation, the fine is increased to $5,000.

  • If at the time of the third, fourth, fifth, or sixth violation of Aggravated DUI, the offender is found to be transporting someone under the age of 16, they are additionally punishable with a minimum fine of $25,000 and 25 days of community service in a program that benefits children.

  • A person found guilty of a fourth Aggravated DUI, if sentenced to imprisonment, shall serve a minimum of one year, but not more than 12 years. If this offense resulted in a death, the imprisonment is increased to a minimum of three years, and a maximum of 14 years. If this offense resulted in multiple deaths the imprisonment is increased to a minimum of six years and a maximum of 28 years.

  • A person found guilty of a fifth Aggravated DUI is guilty of

 

ALCOHOL-INVOLVED DEATHS
Persons Killed in Crashes Involving a Drunk Driver

Number of Deaths, 2003−2012

In Illinois, 3,866 people were killed in crashes involving a drunk driver in 2003-2012

3,866

people were killed in crashes involving a drunk driver in Illinois

Rate of Deaths by Age (per 100,000 population), 2012

NationalIllinois 1.3 0.7 0-20 6.7 6.0 21-34 3.1 2.1 35+ 3.3 2.5 All ages

Rate of Deaths by Age (per 100,000 population), 2012

5.2 4.0 MALE 1.5 1.0 FEMALE report driving after drinking too much NATIONAL 1.9% ILLINOIS 2.2% report driving after drinking too much

 

President Ronald Reagan signs legislation to change the national drinking age from 18 to 21
President Ronald Reagan signs legislation to change the national drinking age from 18 to 21.
  • Officer stops vehicle for probable cause, reasonable suspicion, unusual operation, or at a roadside safety checkpoint.

  • Officer observes driver and requests driver’s license, vehicle registrations, and proof of insurance.

  • Officer may not suspect driver is under the influence. If so, the driver is released without citation.

  • Officer may suspect driver is under the influence. If so, the driver is asked to submit to a sobriety test.

  • If results of sobriety test offer probably cause, the driver is placed under arrest for DUI and transported to a police station. At that time, the driver will be asked to submit to a chemical test of breath, blood, urine, or other bodily substance.

  • If tested driver has a BAC of between .05 and .079, a THC of less than 5 nanograms per milliliter of whole blood, or less than 10 nanograms per milliliter of other bodily substance, then no statutory summary suspension will apply. The associated DUI charge, however, will remain until court action.

  • If the tested driver has a BAC of .08 or higher, a THC of greater than 5 nanograms per milliliter of whole blood or 10 nanograms or greater per milliliter of other bodily fluid, or any trace of a drug other than cannabis is detected via a chemical test, the driver will be issued a statutory summary suspension.

  • If the driver refuses the test, the statutory summary suspension is automatically applied. Driver’s may obtain additional testing at their own expense, with the results being admissible in court.

  • If the driver’s license is valid, a receipt is issued allowing driving for 45 days.

  • The driver is required to post bond and may be detained until bond is provided. Their vehicle may be towed, impounded, or seized.

 

Candace Lightner shares the story of the creation of MADD, arguably the most influential anti-drunk driving organization.

From 1981 to 1986, under pressure from such advocacy groups as the Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Illinois’s legislature passed over 50 pieces of legislation to make DUI laws much harsher than they had been for over 70 years.

Besides raising the minimum drinking age to 21, the two biggest changes that were enacted were that now DUI offenders would be prosecuted with the intent to convict, and that blood alcohol content (BADC) tests would determine if a driver was intoxicated, rather than the loose definition that had existed up to the point. Even determining a driver’s BADC was difficult initially. The first portal device to see field use was called the “drunkometer” and consisted of a rubber balloon filled with reactive chemicals that would change when coming into contact a drunk driver’s breath. This would finally be replaced by the more standard Breathalyzer in 1954.