A Skokie DUI attorney can help you if you have been arrested for drunk driving in Skokie, Illinois. Many people arrested for driving under the influence in Skokie do not immediately understand the serious nature of their situation when they are stopped after a few drinks or the use of drugs. Driving under the Influence (DUI) is not a simple traffic offense, even for first time offenders. A DUI conviction can result in jail time, loss of driving privileges, a criminal record, and other adverse consequences. If you have been arrested for DUI or related alcohol or drugged driving offenses, the most important steps to protect your future involve refusing to talk to the police and invoking your right to legal counsel. The choice to seek immediate legal advice and representation can mean the difference between going to jail and going home.
While a DUI can derail the natural trajectory of one’s life under virtually any circumstances, the potential damage to an individual’s career, family, and financial future increase dramatically for offenders in Skokie. A Skokie DUI attorney can help you understand your rights. Skokie law enforcement authorities take pride in possessing one of the lowest crime rates in the nation. These low crime rates are a symbol of pride for the Skokie Police Department and local prosecutors, and your conviction helps keep those numbers high.
The Illinois State Police recorded 9,302 arrests for DUI during the most recent year for which data is available, which represents a 28.8 percent increase over the prior year. Skokie residents were all too well represented among those taken into custody, as well as the 3,000 people arrested for DUI by the Chicago Police Department and the 475 arrested for DUI by the Cook County Police Department. Unfortunately, the fervor of law enforcement authorities intent on cracking down on drunk driving means that people who have done nothing wrong can face arrest and prosecution. Skokie is just one Illinois community that keeps its DUI arrest rate high through the use of DUI checkpoints. Skokie has a pattern of announcing DUI checkpoints on most major holidays like the Christmas and New Year’s season, Memorial Day, July 4th, and other major holidays. Over 200 people are arrested for DUI in Skokie annually, which places Skokie among the top five cities in Illinois for DUI arrests year after year.
Although many people who live, work, or travel to Skokie are arrested for DUI, an arrest can result in no charges being filed, a dismissal of charges, diversion, or an acquittal after trial. Our Skokie DUI Attorneys have successfully represented hundreds of people facing intoxication-related driving charges. Our Skokie Drunk Driving Defense Lawyers investigate the entire timeline of our client’s encounter with the police from the moment an officer begins following a motorist to the time the officer attempts to obtain a formal chemical test of blood or breath back at the police station. After a careful review and analysis of the facts and circumstances, our experienced Skokie DUI attorneys might utilize a range of defense, such as:
If you are pulled over by a police officer after ingesting drugs or alcohol, the actions you take can significantly impact the potential outcome of your Skokie DUI case. During this stressful period, a motorist should remain calm and understand their power to “just say no.” Although you are required to provide your license, registration, and proof of insurance during a police stop, Illinois law does not require that you answer questions about your activities, alcohol consumption, or related matters. The prospect of refusing to cooperate with an armed police officer with the power of arrest can be a daunting prospect, but you have the right to refuse to answer questions and to decline to participation in Field Sobriety Tests (FSTs) or roadside breath tests. Generally, the questioned asked and these preliminary screening methods are designed to create probable cause for a DUI arrest, so you should exercise your power to say no unless you are absolutely certain you are not intoxicated and have not ingested any drug.
While you will not prevent a DUI arrest by refusing to submit to FSTs or a preliminary breath test (PTB), the officer will have less evidence to support probable cause for a DUI arrest, and the prosecutor will have less evidence at trial. Further, you cannot be punished for exercising your rights to refuse these preliminary alcohol screening tests or decline to answer questions about your drinking activity. However, the officer and prosecutor might still move forward based on observations of your driving activity prior to the stop or indicia of intoxication during the stop, such as bloodshot eyes, slurred speech, lack of coordination, unsteady gait, and/or the odor of alcohol on your breath. However, this type of evidence typically is less persuasive than failed FSTs or admissions that you were intoxicated.
If a Skokie Police Officer or other law enforcement authority has probable cause for a DUI arrest, the officer will take a driver into custody and request the motorist submit to formal testing of breath, blood or urine at the police station. Under Illinois law, an individual will face a mandatory administrative driver’s license suspension for refusing a BAC chemical test or failing such a test. If a driver refuses a formal chemical test (as opposed to a roadside preliminary test) following a lawful arrest, the motorist’s driver’s license suspension will be twice as long as a failed test. A first refusal results in an administrative driver’s license suspension of one year for a first offense as opposed to six months for a failed DUI test with a BAC of .08 percent or above. A 2nd chemical test refusal will result in a 3 year driver’s license suspension whereas a second BAC testing failure will only result in a one year suspension.
IMPORTANT: If you have been arrested for DUI, your driver’s license will be automatically suspended on the 46th day following the arrest unless the suspension is successfully appealed by submitting a written request to the Secretary of State. At the time of arrest, the officer will confiscate a motorist’s driver’s license and provide a Notice of Summary Suspension. A motorist arrested for DUI in Skokie or the surrounding areas should speak to an attorney promptly to protect his or her driving privileges because the suspension will remain in effect if a timely Petition to Rescind Statutory Summary Suspension is not filed. Our Skokie DUI Defense Lawyers have helped many people retain their driving privileges with successful appeals.
A DUI Conviction can result in loss of your driving privileges, jail time, substantial fines/costs, mandatory substance treatment classes, community service, probation, and a criminal record. Our Skokie DUI Attorneys at Goldman & Associates offer a free consultation, so you should call us today at (773) 484-3131 or (847) 215-2600 to schedule your free consultation. We can even come to you, so contact us to balance the scales of justice when facing an alcohol or drug-related driving offense in Skokie or the immediate vicinity.