Monday, March 19, 2012

Chicago DUI Attorney Comments on Payment Plans for Parking Tickets

This Chicago DUI attorney has posted here  and here about parking ticket suspensions and she’s pleased that the City has finally come to its senses.  That’s right there’s an actual recognition that we have been in an economic slump for the last 4-5 years and as her mum would say, “you just can’t get blood from a turnip”.

From the Chicago Tribune:
The city hopes to collect an extra $2.5 million in back-debt on parking and red-light tickets by allowing lower initial payments when debt repayment plans are worked out.
Under the plan, proposed Wednesday by Mayor Rahm Emanuel, scofflaws will no longer have to pay 25 percent of what they owe upfront.
Instead, the amount owed would be spread over equal monthly payments that would go on for as long as a year.

To qualify, the scofflaws would have to already be qualified for one of several low-income programs.
For years I've had clients charged with the criminal offense of Driving While their License is Suspended based purely on economic reasons, including emissions and parking tickets, while the suspension based on emissions has gone away, the suspension based on unpaid tolls or parking tickets has not.  This really is a civil matter, and I certainly hope the legislators begin to consider lifting the suspension of driving privileges based on parking tickets soon.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Breaking News! Chicago DUI Attorney Comments on Chicago Police Officer’s DUI Sentence

This Chicago DUI attorney posted here and here about Chicago Police Officer’s Anthony Bolling’s Chicago DUI.  It involved the death of a boy who was riding his bicycle.

Today Officer Bolling was sentenced before Judge Matthew Coughlin.

From the Chicago Tribune:

A Cook County judge today sentenced Chicago police Officer Richard Bolling to 3 years in prison for killing a 13-year-old boy in an off-duty DUI crash and fleeing the scene.
Bolling, 43, had tears in his eyes as Judge Matthew Coghlan announced his decision.
Last January a Criminal Court jury found Bolling, a 17-year veteran narcotics officer, guilty of aggravated DUI, reckless homicide, and leaving the scene of a fatal accident.
Coghlan also ordered that after his release from prison Bolling talk to recruits at the Chicago Police Academy about “how to properly handle an investigation into one of their own.”
Prosecutors argued at trial that Bolling received preferential treatment from police the night in May 2009 that he struck and killed Trenton Booker at 81st Street and Ashland Avenue with his Dodge Charger.
One of the two officers who stopped him testified that she was ordered to "hold off" on field-sobriety tests by her watch commander. Those tests weren’t administered until two hours after the crash – but not before Bolling was allowed to use a washroom at a nearby gas station.
At the time, both arresting officers said Bolling passed the sobriety tests, but at the trial each changed their opinion, testifying that he had flunked key parts of the tests. One officer said she was "nervous" when she administered the tests because of all the superior officers at the scene.

It wasn't until 4 1/2 hours after the crash that Bolling, on orders of an internal affairs sergeant, took a blood-alcohol breath test. He registered just below the legal limit of 0.08 percent, but an Illinois State Police forensic toxicologist estimated Bolling's blood-alcohol content at the time of crash was as much as twice the legal limit.

 It looks like the professional courtesy Officer Bolling received was not enough to convince a jury to find him guilty.

Chicago DUI Attorney Comments on Judges Losing Their Authority to Sentence

    This Chicago DUI attorney has posted here and here about judges losing the ability to sentence.  Now your legislators down in Springfield want to take away even more sentencing authority from judges.

Amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. Provides that any person who is found guilty of or pleads guilty to driving while intoxicated, including any person receiving a disposition of court supervision for violating that Section, shall (instead of "may") be required to attend a victim impact panel. Adds Victim Impact Speakers to the list of organizations permitted to run victim impact panels. Effective immediately.

In many counties throughout the state Victim Impact Panels are a standard part of the sentencing, but those decisions are being made by judges.