Judge David Hall prevailed on his Statutory Summary Suspension Hearing. He will not have his driving privileges restricted while his DUI case is pending in Lake County.
In Illinois, a driver agrees, known as implied consent, to submit to chemical testing, breath, blood, or urine, at the request of an officer who suspects a DUI. There are consequences to the suspected driver whether permission is granted to take the test or not.
In the case of Judge Hall, he did not submit to a breath test however his blood was tested after he was taken to the hospital.
Whenever one is charged with a DUI a distinct action occurs simply based on the arrest, not a subsequent finding of guilty. A driver will have their driver's license suspended for a minimum of three months(90 days) if they submitted to chemical testing. If the driver does not submit then the suspension is for six months (180) days. There are different penalties, often more severe, if the driver holds a Commercial Driver's License(CDL); is under the age of twenty-one; or has been charged before with a DUI. This action is taken by the Secretary of State, not the court hearing the underlying criminal offense of DUI.
To avoid the suspension the driver must have a hearing on the Statutory Summary Suspension, again this is separate from the criminal matter, and prevail in order to avoid losing their driving privileges. In order to have a hearing, one must request it within 90 days of the arrest. Once the request for a hearing has been made, the State must provide a hearing within 30 days. This is to prevent the hardship to the driver of losing driving privileges, assuming a great outcome at the hearing.
The Petition to Rescind Statutory Summary Suspension is narrow in its operation. One can only win for the following reason:
1) The officer did not have probable cause for the traffic stop
2) The officer did not have probable cause to believe the petitioner was driving under the influence
3) The Petitioner did not refuse to submit to testing by the Officer
4) The Petitioner submitted to testing by the Officer and the results were under.08 BAC
I will write more on my blog later but there are big changes coming to Illinois in DUI law as of January 1, 2009.