How Does Illinois Define and Penalize DUI?

Driving under the influence (DUI) is one of the most serious offenses under the Illinois Vehicle Code. This offense applies criminal charges to any person who operates or controls a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or other substances. Furthermore, Illinois imposes strict penalties for this type of violation. 

How Does Illinois Define DUI?

The Illinois definition of DUI appears under 625 ILCS 5/11-501. This section prohibits any person from driving or being in physical control of any vehicle:

    With a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or more; While under the influence of alcohol; While under the influence of any intoxicating compound or a combination of intoxicating compounds; While under the influence of any other drug or a combination of drugs; While under the combined influence of alcohol, other drugs, or intoxicating compounds; With any amount of a drug, substance, or compound resulting from the use or

Illinois Man Faces Aggravated DUI Charges in McLean County

After allegedly crashing a truck on Interstate 55, an Illinois man faces aggravated DUI charges in McLean County, according to an article by The Pantagraph.

Reports indicate that police officers responded to the scene of an accident on July 9. Allegedly, the Illinois man crashed on the interstate. The police officers who responded detected the smell of alcohol and signs of intoxication. But the Illinois man refused to provide blood, breath, or urine samples for chemical testing. 

As a result of this incident, the Illinois man faces one count of aggravated DUI and several counts of obstruction of justice. If the DUI charge holds up in court, it represents the third such charge in Illinois. Though apparently, this man also faced DUI charges in Maine from 2012 to 2017. 

At this juncture, the Illinois man remains in police custody on a $10,000 bond with an arraignment scheduled for August [...]

When Does DUI Become Reckless Homicide in Illinois?

The state of Illinois prohibits any person from driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of substances. Ultimately, any driver on Illinois roads must ensure that they can operate their vehicle safely and in compliance with applicable law. Any violation of Illinois DUI laws can result in a jail or prison sentence and criminal fines. 

But if a DUI offense also involves a fatality — even an unintentional one — the offender will usually face reckless homicide charges instead. Given the severity of this type of conduct, reckless homicide is a felony crime with heightened penalties for any violation.

How Does Illinois Define Reckless Homicide?

720 ILCS 5/9-3 provides the Illinois definition of reckless homicide. There are two different versions of reckless homicide under this section. 

The first version of reckless homicide applies whenever a person:

    Commits DUI; and Causes the death of another person as

How Does Illinois Increase DUI Penalties for Repeat Offenders?

It is against the law in Illinois to drive under the influence (DUI) of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of substances. The moment a person becomes impaired and unable to operate their vehicle in a safe and controlled manner, DUI charges are likely to follow. 

That being said, the Illinois penalties for DUI offenses increase dramatically for repeat offenders, particularly in cases of aggravated DUI. To understand exactly how this system works, the following sections will examine Illinois DUI penalties under 625 ILCS 5/11-501

    First DUI Conviction

Generally speaking, DUI is a Class A misdemeanor on the first offense. At this level, the penalties can include a maximum of $2,500 in criminal fines and 12 months in jail. 

    Second DUI Conviction

On the second offense, DUI remains a Class A misdemeanor in Illinois. But Section 11-501 triggers mandatory levels of punishment. Second-time DUI offenders are subject to a [...]