Earlier this week I was on a panel for a local tv show on Chicago DUI and changes to the law. The interviewer was a Cook County Judge. She asked me a question about taking the Field Sobriety Tests when stopped on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. She said she always told people to cooperate with the Chicago police. My short answer to her question was no. This particular situation puts almost everyone in a bind. Aren't I supposed to listen to the police? Won't I be in trouble if I don't do what the police tell me to do?
Folks this falls back to knowing your rights. We have all watched enough police shows, both reality based like Cops, and long running favorites like Law & Order, to know our Miranda Warnings. Everyone's favorite goes like this: "You have the right to remain silent". So what does remaining silent mean for someone charged with a Chicago DUI ?
It means that once a Chicago Police Officer stops your vehicle and asks you "Where have you been tonight? Were you drinking? How much did you have to drink tonight?", you should expect that you are going to be arrested and charged with a Chicago DUI. So what do you do when asked these questions? Well, you have to decide if you want to help the police officer strengthen his belief that you were driving under the influence of alcohol. Once the officer asks you to step out of the car, and take some tests, you should know that you are very likely to be arrested. At that point you need to decide whether you want to (i) help the officer make his case against you, or (ii) ask for a lawyer.
It has been my experience that even if you pass the Field Sobriety Tests, and/or blow under the legal limit of .08 BAC, you will still be arrested, given a court date, and need to hire a Chicago DUI lawyer who knows what they are doing.
Call 312 944 3973, day or night, for immediate assistance
Law Office of Ava George Stewart, P.C.
I have successfully defended thousands of DUI and criminal traffic cases in Chicago and surrounding Cook County, including those with accidents and fatalities.
Member, National College of DUI Defense;
Member, Illinois State Bar Association Assembly Member and Traffic Laws and Courts Section; Women's Criminal Defense Bar Association.