Saturday, October 31, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer says they're back, those creepy, crawly, bone-chilling, no-refusal DUI crackdowns in Kane County

This Chicago DUI lawyer has commented here, here, and here on Kane County's "No-refusal" policy for DUI suspects. Now comes the word that they are at them again for the Halloween weekend.

The Kane County state's attorney's office will be handing out tickets, instead of treats, to drunken drivers on Halloween.

A no-refusal operation will take place this evening and will remain in effect until Sunday morning in several Kane County jurisdictions, the Kane County state's attorney's office said.

Teamed with the Illinois State Police, prosecutors will conduct the operation as a normal drunken driving stop where a suspect is asked to submit a blood or breath sample. While drivers typically have the right to refuse, prosecutors said this evening they won't have that luxury.

Because it is a no-refusal weekend, suspected drunken drivers will be given a court order to comply with officers' requests for blood or breath samples.

The evidence, prosecutors said, will help seal drunken driving convictions and prevent those with a DUI history from continuing to do so.

Kane County State's Attorney John Barsanti debuted "no refusal" last year as an aggressive way to compel suspected drunken drivers to submit to blood or breath tests. The no-refusal detail will be run between 11:30 p.m. and 3:30 a.m.

In addition to St. Patrick's Day in St. Charles this year, the state's attorney's office held the events over the Fourth of July weekend in Elgin, and in St. Charles, Geneva and Batavia over Memorial Day in 2008.

During no-refusal events, police officers follow their normal routine for drunken driving arrests. But if someone arrested refuses to take the breathalyzer test, attorneys are on hand to immediately go to a judge on call to ask him or her to sign a warrant. If the judge signs the warrant, that means the court is ordering the defendant to give a blood sample.

If the defendant continues to refuse, the court can follow with contempt sanctions and charge the defendant with felony obstructing justice.

Barsanti said police will not take blood samples by force.

But he and Assistant State's Attorney Steve Sims, who prosecutes the drunken driving cases, said it is a "myth" that defendants have the right to refuse breath tests or blood samples.

I'm still not clear why these folks think it's a "myth" that those suspected of DUI have a right to refuse chemical testing. Especially, since they stated earlier that normally people have a right to refuse and that they will not take samples by force. If you don't have a right to refuse then the police should be able to take a blood sample by force. That's what we want our government doing right?

Friday, October 30, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer says DUI Roadblocks are back this Halloween

This Chicago DUI lawyer has posted here, here, and here about DUI roadblocks. Now comes the news that there is a roadblock this evening in the Bucktown, Humboldt Park, Wicker Park communities. So I know it's a wonderful night in Chicago for adults to enjoy the holiday but know this, if you have alcohol on your breath and end up at a roadblock you will probably be charged with a DUI, whether you submit to chemical testing or not.

Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer says now they want to suspend your driver's license for getting a DUI on a snowmobile

This Chicago DUI lawyer has posted here and here about legislation regarding snowmobile or boat operation while under the influence of alcohol. Well as I said last week that legislation would be back:

New Law coming soon-- Boating & Snowmobiling Under the Influence will impact your ability to drive your car!

Here's the proposed legislation:

2 AMENDMENT NO. ______. Amend Senate Bill 2248 by replacing
3everything after the enacting clause with the following:
4 "Section 1. The General Assembly finds that the use of any
5motor vehicle, snowmobile or watercraft while under the
6influence of alcohol or other drugs is inherently dangerous.
7Further, the General Assembly finds that there is an
8unacceptable risk to the public safety and welfare that an
9offender who drives or operates any one of these devices while
10under the influence will continue to drive or operate another
11of these devices while under the influence. Further, the
12General Assembly finds that increased, enhanced, and
13coordinated legislative, law enforcement, and administrative
14measures are needed to improve this State's efforts to deter
15this unlawful activity. Finally, the General Assembly finds
16that the public safety and welfare can be better served and
17protected by harmonizing and integrating this State's statutes

09600SB2248ham001- 2 -LRB096 08771 AJT 29569 a

1related to driving, boating, and snowmobiling while under the
2influence of alcohol and other drugs, and that it is with this
3intent that this legislation is enacted.

I don't know about you but I really find it disturbing to think someone could lose their driving privileges if they were charged with a DUI while operating a snowmobile.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer comments on the cop busted for DUI-- he was on duty!

This Chicago DUI lawyer has posted here, here, and here about Chicago police officers charged with DUI. This is the first time I've ever heard of a cop being charged with a DUI while on duty!

Fire crews were on the scene at noon of a house fire in the 1600 block of Macomber. Residents of the house got out safely.

A Toledo police officer was arrested for allegedly being drunk on duty. Police say James Breier responded to an accident at Detroit and Berdan involving a fire engine. On scene, a battalion chief felt Breier may have been intoxicated.

Yikes! How on earth do you get charged with a DUI while you are on the job and at the scene of a fire no less?

Monday, October 26, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer comments on Stephanie Pratt's DUI

This Chicago DUI lawyer has posted here, here, and here about the consequences of submitting to Breath Alcohol Testing. Now comes the news that Stephanie Pratt wasn't driving poorly at all when she was charged with a DUI.

  1. 2 drinks... call a taxi! pls learn from my mistake. love u alllll!
  2. i would never put other peoples lives at risk and want to be very clear that i was not pulled over for unsafe driving.
  3. which was 2 drinks. i made the wrong choice to drive and i take full responsibility.
  4. i was pulled over 4 tinted windows 3 blocks from where i was sleeping and blew a .08
Just another reason not to take the test. This young woman did not believe she was drunk. Nor was she charged with bad driving. Perhaps we have let machines over ride our own powers of observation.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer says even the Police Superintendent weighs in on the DUI charged cop's benefit

This Chicago DUI lawyer has posted here and here about the benefit for accused Detective Joseph Frugoli. Now comes news that even the Police Superintendent thinks the fund-raiser at the Fraternal Order of Police Hall was in bad taste.

A Friday fund-raiser at a Fraternal Order of Police hall for Joseph Frugoli -- a Chicago Police detective accused of killing two people in an alleged DUI crash in April -- drew criticism from Police Supt. Jody Weis.

"I understand people have friends, and if friends want to help somebody out that's fine, [but] that can be done more face-to-face," Weis said after a community meeting in the 20th Ward on Saturday.

"I do think the optics on that were bad, that is, being hosted by the FOP," he said.

Well it looks like my husband was right about the criticism Police Supt. Jody Weis would take for his statements.

From the Comments Section of the Chicago Sun TImes:

blue&white wrote:
....and I forgot to add, Jody is an idiot and to not understand this proves how clueless he is and perfect example as to why he will never have the respect or approval of the police.
10/25/2009 11:35 AM CDT on
blue&white wrote:
I understand that the citizens are upset about this, but I don't think they understand what a police benefit is. We have these to help out our friends/co-workers in their biggest time of need. It could be outrageous medical bills due to illness which are highly supported. Then we also have those that are to help with costs related to criminal charges or suspensions. We are not a judge or jury. By going to these in no way are the officers saying they believe the individual to be innocent of charges or correct in their actions. It is seeing someone who has worked with you for years and most likely done the right thing 95% of the time in their lives suffering and needing help, because maybe they made one bad decision that ended up being so serious and possibly harmful to others that their entire life as they know it is ruined.
10/25/2009 8:34 AM CDT on
sneezer wrote:
Jody Weis is a bonified idiot
10/25/2009 7:04 AM CDT on
A far more compassionate take on an accused drunk driver than you will find from the staff of the Secretary of State.

From my Twitter Account:

Hard-hitting comments from the Secretary of State's Admin. Lawyer. Hint: They don't think the MDDP is expensive for someone who drinks :D

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer comments on the quiet protest at the DUI cop's fund-raiser

This Chicago DUI lawyer has posted here, here, and here about Detective Joseph Frugoli's DUI from last spring. Now comes the news that there was a vigil held outside of the Fraternal Order of Police hall where a benefit for Detective Joseph Frugoli took place.

Friends and family members of two men killed in a DUI crash involving a police officer held a vigil Friday night outside a Near West Side union hall while a fundraiser was held inside for Det. Joseph Frugoli, who is accused of crashing into the victims' vehicle while driving drunk on the Dan Ryan in April.

Dozens of people stood quietly outside the Fraternal Order of Police hall at 1412 W. Washington Blvd., holding candles, signs and photos of the two victims, Andrew Cazares, 23, and Fausto Manzera, 21.

Police said Frugoli's blood-alcohol content was more than three times the legal limit when his Lexus SUV struck a car that had pulled over on the Dan Ryan Expressway north of 18th Street. The car exploded into flames and killed the two men.

Frugoli, who was off duty, also is accused of leaving the scene of the crash.

Those attending the vigil said the fundraiser for Frugoli's legal bills showed a callous disregard for the deaths, and indicated that some police put themselves above the law.

Those attending the function, which was closed to the media, declined comment while entering or leaving the hall.

I am curious, as I suspect many of us are, as to how many people attended the benefit and how much money was raised?

Friday, October 23, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer says MADD wants Interlock Ignition Devices coming soon to you

This Chicago DUI lawyer has posted here, here, and here about Interlock Ignition Devices, a/k/a BAIID. These devices are attached to your vehicle and require the driver to blow into the machine in order to start the car and subsequently at random intervals. Now comes word that the goal of MADD is to have Interlock Devices in all cars.

But one area where progress is being made in the United States is in the use and development of devices that measure a driver’s blood alcohol content through a breath test before the car is able to start.

Just this year, Arkansas, Hawaii and Utah passed laws, bringing to 10 the number of states that have made alcohol ignition interlocks mandatory in cars for convicted drunken drivers, even first-time offenders. The other states are Alaska, Arizona, Illinois, Louisiana, Nebraska, New Mexico and Washington.

And attitudes may be changing, too. While opponents of interlocks cite privacy issues and concerns that some devices might be overly sensitive, a survey released this month by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety showed that about two out of three respondents were in favor of putting reliable alcohol detection systems into all cars, not just into the cars of offenders.

Last year a public-private partnership was begun to research, develop and test the technology that detects alcohol in a driver’s system. The systems are intended to be put in all cars, not just in those driven by people who have been convicted of driving under the influence. Called the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety Program, it is a cooperative agreement between the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Automotive Coalition for Traffic Safety, a consortium of automakers. The program is expected to cost $10 million.

Three companies based in the United States, Canada and Sweden are developing the prototypes that are expected to be ready for testing next summer, Dr. Ferguson said. In-vehicle testing is expected to be by February 2013. The new detection systems are being designed to work quickly, accurately and unobtrusively, she said, noting that the ones in use now are considered intrusive and not acceptable for widespread use. “Certainly within 10 years, the technology will be vehicle-ready, if not sooner.”

A report by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety states that while about 180,000 interlocks are in use nationwide and successfully reduce the risk that previous offenders will commit repeat violations, most fatal alcohol-related crashes involved drivers who hadn’t had a conviction in the previous three years. If interlocks had been in all vehicles, according to estimates in the report, more than 8,000 lives could have been saved last year.

“The main reason people drive drunk is because they can,” said Chuck Hurley, chief executive of Mothers Against Drunk Driving. “The only way to eliminate drunk driving is to have technology in all vehicles so no one can drive drunk.”

See, people aren't capable of being responsible for their actions. They really need Big Brother to do everything for them don't they?

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer says sometimes it helps to have the updates come straight from the horse's mouth

This Chicago DUI lawyer has posted here, here, and here about the MDDP. This is the program that requires all first-time DUI accuseds to place a Breath Alcohol IgnitionInterlock Device (BAIID) on their vehicle if they wish to drive during the term of their Stautory Summary Suspension. Now comes the word that the MDDP hasn't gone as planned.

chicagoduilaw "Large numbers of people aren't taking the device". We don't know if they opted out. We aren't getting that court form #MDDP.

The device in question is a BAIID. The quote is provided by an attorney for the Secretary of State handling Administrative Driver's License Reinstatement procedures at a breakout session on Traffic/DUI New Law at the Illinois State Bar Association's 5th Annual Solo and Small Firm Conference.

Overwhelmingly the audience felt the device wasn't being used because it was too expensive and too cumbersome. I wonder why no one from MADD told the Illinois legislator that would probably be the result?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Chicago DUI lawyer comments on the benefit for the Chicago cop charged with a DUI

This Chicago DUI lawyer is familiar with family and friends supporting the accused in a DUI case in a number of ways from providing transportation back and forth to court (remember a DUI arrest triggers an automatic driver's license suspension unless you file and win the Statutory Summary Suspension hearing) to posting bail to even paying lawyer's fees but she hasn't heard of the police holding a fundraiser for a DUI accused before.

Chicago police officers are planning a benefit this weekend at their union headquarters for Joseph Frugoli, who's accused of crashing into a car while driving drunk on the Dan Ryan in April, killing two people.

An invitation to the event is posted on the Web site of the Fraternal Order of Police, and appears next to the numbers "10-1," radio code for officer in need of assistance.

"You're invited to assist Detective Joe Frugoli," the posting reads. Tickets cost $50. A detective lists his name and phone number for further information.

Police said Frugoli's blood-alcohol content was more than three times the legal limit when his Lexus SUV struck a car that had pulled over on the Dan Ryan Expressway north of 18th Street. The car exploded into flames and killed Andrew Cazares, 23, and Fausto Manzera, 21.

Frugoli is also accused of leaving the scene.

FOP President Mark Donahue distanced the organization from the event, saying it was planned by some of the officer's friends.

What do we learn from this? Even the police believe Detective Joe Frugoli isn't guilty until a judge or jury decides to the contrary.