The Right to a Speedy Trial

Speedy Trial Rights

The Right to a Speedy Trial

A speedy trial is guaranteed to anyone charged with a crime in Illinois or in a federal court. The right to speedy trial is guaranteed by the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which states, “In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial.” The Sixth Amendment  guarantees a trial within a set period of time and it prevents the prosecution from unnecessarily delaying your trial. Aside from the protections guaranteed by the United States Constitution, Illinois also provides a corresponding right in the Illinois Speedy Trial Act codified at 725 ILCS 5/103-5.

Barker v. Wingo– Constitutional Right to a Speedy Trial

In 1972, the United States Supreme Court issued its ruling in Barker v. Wingo, a case that dealt with the 6th Amendment. Barker involved a habeas corpus petition that sought review of Barker’s murder conviction. Barker was convicted in a state court in Kentucky in 1963 for a double murder that had occurred in 1958. The local police arrested Barker and his co-defendant, Manning, shortly after the murders. The prosecution believing that the case against Manning was stronger than the case against Barker chose to prosecute Manning first with the hope that after being convicted Manning would testify against Barker in exchange for a more lenient sentence. In October of 1958, the prosecution sought the first of 16 continuances in Barker’s case. Barker’s criminal defense attorney did not object to the vast majority of the prosecution’s continuances including the first 11 continuances but did object to continuances numbers 12, 15, and 16. Manning was convicted for his part in the double murder in December of 1962 in a trial where Manning exercised his 5th Amendment right to remain silent and the constitutional prohibition of self-incriination. Barker was convicted in October of 1963.

Barker challenged his conviction on 6th Amendment grounds to the the Kentucky appellate courts and to the Kentucky Supreme Court. After both reviewing courts in Kentucky affirmed his sentence, Barker filed his post-conviction petition to the federal district court in Kentucky, which affirmed his sentence as did the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. The United States Supreme Court granted Barker’s writ of certiorari in 1972.

Although the Supreme Court held that the 5-year period between defendant’s arrest and conviction was “extraordinary” it still upheld Barker’s conviction in a unanimous vote despite the Court finding that only 7-months of the 5-years was a “justifiable” delay. In so doing, the Supreme Court created the standard to determine when a person’s speedy trial rights have been violated. The standard created by the Supreme Court was not based upon the passage of a certain number of days as the American Bar Association recommended. Instead, the Supreme Court created a balancing test to determine on a case-by-case basis whether a defendant’s constitutional right to a speedy trial had been violated. The Court created the following factors for lower courts to determine whether a defendant was prejudiced by the prosecution’s delay in bringing the defendant’s case to trial:

  1. The length of the delay
  2. The reason for the delay
  3. Whether the defendant ever asserted his right before trial
  4. The prejudice suffered by the defendant because of the delay

Illinois Statutory Right to a Speedy Trial

Illinois grants defendants not only the rights guaranteed by the 6th Amendment to the United States Constitution but it also has created a statutory right to a prompt and quick trial. In Baker v. Wingo, the American Bar Association recommended that the United States Supreme Court should create a constitutional rule that guaranteed a trial within a certain time period. The Supreme Court rejected this approach holding that it could not determine “how long is too long” of a delay. Despite the United States Supreme Court rejecting this approach, the Illinois General Assembly adopted such an approach for state courts located in Illinois. In Illinois, “how long is too long” depends upon whether the defendant is in pre-trial custody or whether the defendant is released on bond.

Defendants Released on Bond

Illinois treats defendants that are in pre-trial custody differently then it does defendants who are released on bond. Among the major reasons for the difference is because defendants that are on bond are less prejudiced by the delay in the trial then are defendants that are in custody. Defendants that are out of custody after posting the required bail bond, the statute requires the State to bring the defendant to trial within 160 days after the defendant formally demands a speedy trial.

Under Illinois criminal law, a defendant on bond must demand trial with a written a demand for trial. Defendants that do not take the requisite steps waive their rights to object to the State’s delay in bringing the case to trial. What that means is that to enforce your rights under the Speedy Trial Act you must take certain steps otherwise you will not enjoy your right to a speedy trial. Illinois requires a defendant out on bond to file a written demand for trial. In the written demand, the defendant must state the demand for trial is being made under the Illinois Speedy Trial Act. The demand must also list any prior demands under the Act. Time spent in pre-trial custody counts against the speedy trial period. However, after being released from custody the defendant must file a written demand upon being released from custody.

Defendants in Custody

The speedy trial period for defendants that are detained in pre-trial confinement are treated differently in Illinois. Defendants that are unable to post the bail bond amount and remain in custody while awaiting trial, have a shorter speedy trial period than defendants on bond. In custody defendants have a 120 day speedy trial period, which means the State must bring the defendant to trial within 120 days of the defendant being taken into custody by the State. The 120 day period begins to run automatically unless the delay in the trial was attributable to the defendant. Additionally, unlike a defendant released on bond, a defendant in custody does not need to file a written demand for trial to start the 120-day speedy trial period. However, to ensure that your right to a speedy trial is enforced you cannot agree to delaying the trial or consent to the State’s request for a continuance.

An important factor in computing the 120-day speedy trial period is the reason for the defendants incarceration. The speedy trial period does not apply to cases where the defendant is in custody as a result of a different offense. For example, if a defendant is facing two separate but simultaneous criminal charges and the defendant has an I-bond one charge and a no bail bond hold on another charge which is keeping the defendant in custody. The defendant cannot argue that the 120 day speedy trial period applies to the case that has an I-bond because that case in keeping him in custody. The 120-day period also does not apply to defendants who are in custody for a violation of parole or mandatory supervised release. The 120-day speedy trial period must be one continuous period of incarceration. In computing the 120-day term, separate periods of incarceration may not be combined. Also, if a defendant is taken into custody a second (or subsequent) time for the same offense, the term will begin again at day zero.

What is a Delay Occasioned by the Defendant?

The most important factor in the Illinois Speedy Trial Act is whether the delay was occasioned by the defendant. Regardless if the defendant is in custody or on pre-trial bond, the speedy trial period is tolled when the delay in the trial is caused by the defendant or if the defendant agrees to the continuance. Anytime a defendant files a pre-trial motion, even a motion for discovery, is a delay occasioned by the defendant because the prosecution is required to answer the motion prior to trial. The entire time that it takes to resolve the pre-trial motion is attributed to the defendant even in cases where the delay in proceeding to a pre-trial hearing is caused by the prosecution.

In most criminal defense cases, the defendant and the prosecution are in pre-trial negotiations. Those pre-trial discussions between the prosecution and the criminal defense lawyer sometimes involves plea negotiations, witness availability, trial stipulations, and a host of other items. Those discussions typically take several months to complete. During that time will likely involve several court appearances where the defendant, the criminal defense attorney, and the prosecution advise the trial court on the progress of the case. These continuances are usually agreed to by the defendant. These agreed continuances that are known as by agreement continuances also toll the speedy trial period.

A defendant can also waive his right to a speedy trial by his or her actions. All defendants that are on bond are required by the conditions of their bond to appear on time to their scheduled court dates. A failure to comply with this requirement will result in the defendant waiving his or her previous speedy trial demands. What that means is a defendant on bond who misses court will have the speedy trial period reset to Day 0 if the defendant ever is late or misses a court date. This result will occur regardless if the court issues a warrant for the defendants arrest.

What Can You Do to Enforce Your Right to a Speedy Trial

Both the United States Constitution and the Illinois Speedy Trial Act act as a shield to protect defendants against the prosecution unnecessarily delaying your trial and prejudicing the defendants right to due process that includes a right to a fair and impartial trial. The actual protections guaranteed are different whether the right being violated is the defendants right to a speedy trial under the United States Constitution or under Illinois law. Although the rights are different, the protections they provide are applied contemporaneously and separately, which to use depends upon the individual circumstances of your case.

That is why the most important thing you can do is to hire an criminal defense lawyer that not only understands both protections but a criminal defense attorney that can and is willing to communicate with you about your case. Time and time again as both a prosecutor and now as an Illinois criminal defense attorney, I have seen defendants agreeing to continuances without any explanation from their attorneys. The defendants look up and over a year has passed on their case without any benefit or end in sight. A criminal defense lawyer who will communicate with you the reasons for the continuance or the reasons why pre-trial motions have been filed will ease your mind that your case is processing as it should be. Only with an attorney that will communicate with you is how you can ensure rights to a speedy trial are protected and enforced.

At Jaleel Law, we pride ourselves on responding to our client’s questions as soon as we can and in most cases well within 24 hours. We never feel like our clients are bothering us or disturbing us, instead, we believe that an open communication between an attorney and the client is critical piece in a successful defense. We rely on our clients to speak to us truthfully and honestly just like our clients want the same. Whether you are charged with a crime and want to ensure that your rights are protected by a former prosecutor who actually cares what happens to you or whether your rights have been denied, we can help. We have successfully defended people just like you in the trial courts and in the appellate courts. We have the experience to win regardless of where your case is currently. Contact us today to see what we can do in your case.

Consequences of a DUI Conviction

Consequences of a DUI Conviction

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Consequences of a DUI Conviction

The consequences of a DUI conviction can be severe. The consequences of a DUI include both the criminal penalties for a DUI and the collateral consequences to your driving privileges. Collateral consequences include the revocation of your driving privileges.

When is a DUI Conviction Possible?

A conviction for a DUI can occur even after your first DUI arrest. Typically, first-time DUI offenders do not receive a conviction as a sentence. Rather, first-time DUI usually receive a sentence of supervision. However, anyone charged with a subsequent DUI is ineligible for supervision and the only sentencing option is a conviction. A sentence of supervision can become a conviction if the State successfully gets a court to revoke your supervision based upon a violation of the supervision terms.

A DUI can also go down as a default judgment that is treated by the Illinois Secretary of State’s Department of Motor Vehicles Division as a conviction. What that means is if you miss your court dates and a judgment is entered against you that judgment is the equivalent of a conviction for the DMV. In these situations, it is imperative that you contact a Chicago DUI lawyer as soon as possible to file the appropriate motions to vacate the default judgment. If successful, the motion to vacate will put the DUI case back on the court’s docket but more importantly it would vacate the judgment which would reinstate your driving privileges.

Out of State DUIConsequences of a DUI Conviction

This criminal defense attorney in Lemoyne says that anyone that receives a DUI out of state will have his or her Illinois driver’s license revoked. The current procedure in place requires the state making the DUI arrest to report to the Illinois DMV that an Illinois resident was arrested for a DUI. At this point, Illinois will likely suspend the Illinois driver’s license under its Implied Consent and statutory summary suspension laws. If the out of state DUI results in a judgment that judgment will be reported to Illinois. Illinois then will revoke the person’s driver’s license. Under the current procedure a first-time DUI offender will have his Illinois driver’s license revoked. This absurd result will occur even if the first-time DUI offender would have received supervision in Illinois.

Criminal Consequences for a DUI Conviction

The Illinois DUI laws and the sentencing scheme it creates control the criminal consequences available for a DUI conviction. For example, mandatory minimum sentences are required for 2nd or subsequent DUIs, cases where the BAC is twice the legal limit, and if minors where in the vehicle driven by or in actual physical control of the DUI offender. The Illinois DUI laws increase the criminal consequences available to a sentencing court depending upon how many prior DUIs are in the offender’s background. A conviction for a DUI will be the only type of sentence available for anyone facing a 2nd or subsequent DUI.

Collateral Consequences of a DUI Conviction

The collateral consequences of a DUI conviction include all the consequences that occur after a DUI conviction other than the criminal consequences. Collateral consequences include the alcohol and drug treatment classes, the fines and fees, consequences to your job, and the potential embarrassment that comes with a DUI arrest. However, the biggest collateral consequence that follows a DUI conviction is the ramification to your driving privileges.

Following a DUI conviction, the DMV will revoke a person’s driving privileges for a minimum of one-year. Unlike a suspension that ends automatically after paying a reinstatement fee, a revocation stays in effect until the DMV reinstates your driving privileges. Typically, the DMV will reinstate your driving privileges only after a hearing with the Secretary of State.

At the hearing, the Secretary of State will make a determination whether your driving privileges will be restored. The Secretary of State hearing can either be a formal or informal hearing. A formal hearing is required anytime driving privileges need to be restored following a fatality or multiple DUIs. Typically, a restricted driving permit is issued prior to full-reinstatement.


The consequences of a DUI conviction cover both the criminal consequences and the collateral consequences. Currently, the law only requires a DUI lawyer to discuss the criminal consequences of a DUI conviction because the courts have said that the criminal consequences are what matter. That logic makes no sense. Anyone convicted of a DUI knows first-hand that losing your privilege to drive has dramatic consequences. An attorney advising someone to cop out to a DUI conviction must discuss the collateral consequences as well.

At Jaleel Law we understand that in the real world collateral consequences matter just as much as the criminal consequences. That is why we will discuss all the consequences involved in your case and we will tell you the pros and cons of every decision that you are required to make in a DUI case or any other case we represent you in. We are not a law firm that encourages pleading guilty and we always look for ways to win your case. We are not afraid to fight for you. If you decide though that you would rather get your case over with as fast as possible, we promise that you will fully know and understand what you are getting yourself into by pleading guilty. On a daily basis we receive calls from clients seeking to appeal their cases and 9 times out of 10 those potential clients tell us “my attorney never told me that.” We promise that will not happen to you because you will know not only the criminal consequences but also the collateral consequences to a conviction in your case.

Contact us today to discuss how we can help.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

How to Beat a DUI Charge- Top 5 Ways

Learn the Top 5 Ways to Beat a DUI

How to Beat a DUI Charge in Illinois-Top 5 Ways

A DUI charge in Illinois is a serious crime that carries with it significant penalties for a DUI including mandatory jail time in certain situations. However, a DUI charge will never go to sentencing if you beat your DUI case. Here are the 5 best ways to beat a DUI charge in Chicago or anywhere else in Illinois.

1) Win a Motion to Suppress Evidence and Quash Arrest

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Learn the Top 5 Ways to Beat a DUI
Learn the Top 5 Ways to Beat a DUI

Every person, regardless if they are a citizen or undocumented, has a 4th Amendment right to be free from an unreasonable search and seizure. Most driving while under the influence or DWI charges start following a traffic stop. Because of this fact, every DUI/DWI charge that begins with a traffic stop must be supported with probable cause, which means the police officer must have a valid basis to stop your car in the first place because the 4th Amendment protects drivers from being arbitrarily stopped by the police for no reason. However, any traffic violation however small can be enough probable cause to conduct a valid traffic stop within the meaning of the 4th Amendment.

An experienced DUI attorney can use the protections provided by the Fourth Amendment to beat a DUI case. For example, when the police allege a aggravated speeding violation to justify a traffic stop, a skilled DUI attorney can establish that the police were incorrect in their assessment because their radar gun was not properly calibrated prior to the traffic stop or it was used incorrectly. If a lane violation is the probable cause to justify a traffic stop, a very common police claim, a DUI attorney well versed in Illinois DUI law can establish that the lane violation was warranted based upon the road or traffic conditions, which could defeat the probable cause claim offered by the State. Getting a truck accident lawyer nashville tn in case of accidents on highways is necessary, because that’s where such cases are prone to happen.

A competent DUI attorney experienced in fighting 4th Amendment issues can use a litany of arguments to win a probable cause hearing based upon a constitutionally deficient traffic stop. After winning a motion to quash arrest and suppress evidence the State will be forced to dismiss charges against you that is why winning a motion to suppress evidence and quash arrest is such a great way to beat a DUI charge in Illinois.

2) Get the Breathalyzer Evidence Suppressed

Any competent DUI lawyer would advice his or her client to never submit to a breathalyzer test. The reason is simple. A breathalyzer result that is over the legal limit is the strongest evidence a prosecutor has in a DUI/DWI case. However, before a prosecutor can admit the results of the breathalyzer, a proper foundation needs to be established. The foundation required before a breath test can be used as evidence include a host of different things from the licensing required of the operator; the type of breathalyzer machine that can be used; how the test must be conducted; to how the log books that record the results are kept and maintained.

If these requirements are not met then the results of the breathalyzer test could be suppressed. An experienced DUI lawyer can file a motion to suppress the breath test results based upon a lack of a proper foundation for the breathalyzer results. Although a successful motion to suppress the breath test results likely won’t result in an outright dismissal, it will result in the suppression of a key piece of the State’s evidence in a DUI case, which is why it is such a great way to a beat a DUI case in Illinois.

3) Attack the Reliability of the Field Sobriety Tests

Another great method of beating a DUI charge is attacking the reliability of the field sobriety tests. Field sobriety tests or FSTs consists of 3 tests created by the National Traffic Safety Administration. According to the studies conducted by NHTSA, field sobriety tests that are conducted according to its stringent guidelines are 90% accurate in detecting whether someone has a BAC higher than 0.01. It is important to note that the FSTs are not 100% accurate even when conducted in an ideal situation. However, such a situation rarely ever occurs in an actual DUI case where the field sobriety tests are conducted on the side of the road usually in the middle of a cold night.

A DUI attorney who has the requisite knowledge and experience can attack the reliability of the field sobriety tests to the extent that they play no part in a jury’s verdict. Once a skilled lawyer attacks the reliability of the field sobriety tests, the remainder of the police officer’s testimony is also called into question, which is why it is one of the top 5 ways to beat a DUI.

4) Prevent the Prosecution from Establishing Under the Influence

Most DUI/DWI charges in Illinois require the State to prove that the DUI defendant was under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of alcohol and drugs. Under the influence is a legal term that is vastly different than being drunk. Under Illinois DUI law, under the influence can be any amount of alcohol that lowers a person’s ability to drive or act with ordinary care.

A skilled DUI lawyer can poke holes in the State’s theory and establish reasonable doubt as to whether a DUI defendant was under the influence. The crux of being under the influence is bad driving or in DUI parlance, erratic driving. An experienced DUI lawyer can establish that even though alcohol may have been consumed it didn’t result in the driver being “under the influence” because the alcohol didn’t affect the person’s ability to operate a car with ordinary care. Even in situations where an accident occurred, a proficient DUI lawyer like attorneys at Bengal Law can establish that the traffic crash was not a result of the alcohol but a result of the road conditions or mechanical error as opposed to driver error. Because under the influence is an element of most Illinois DUI charges and because it can be attacked in numerous different ways, it is a critical means of beating a DUI charge.

5) Jury Nullification

The final method in beating a DUI case is arguably the most difficult and requires the most proficiency from a DUI attorney. According to Wikipedia, jury nullification “occurs in a trial when a jury acquits a defendant, even though the members of the jury may believe that the defendant did the illegal act, yet they don’t believe he or she should be punished for it. This may occur when members of the jury disagree with the law the defendant has been charged with breaking, or believe that the law should not be applied in that particular case.“ Based on this definition one can see why it requires more than just a competent DUI attorney to pull off. To be successful, DUI lawyer must convince the jury to deliberately reject the evidence or to refuse to apply established law. Most importantly, a DUI attorney must persuade the jury to ignore the oath they took to return a verdict based solely on the law and the facts of the case. If this burden wasn’t difficult enough, the law prohibits a lawyer from arguing jury nullification to the jury. Despite all these shortcomings, jury nullification is still a great way to beat a DUI case.

In DUI law, jury nullification typically arises in actual physical control cases. In these situations, the DUI defendant is never caught driving a car; rather, the person is caught sleeping in a car while intoxicated. According to Illinois DUI law, sleeping in a car is the equivalent of driving. However, to most people sleeping in a car while drunk is vastly different from driving a car while drunk. A capable DUI lawyer can use the jury’s common sense to establish jury nullification without violating the prohibition from an attorney arguing for jury nullification. Although difficult jury nullification sometimes is the only available defense and when an experienced attorney employs it the outcome could result in an acquittal. Jury nullification is always a defense of last resort but when nothing else is available it could be a way to beat a DUI charge.


How do I beat my DUI case, is a question that we are asked on a daily basis at Jaleel Law P.C. While all DUI charges are different and the individual facts of each case are different, at least one of these top 5 ways to beat a DUI charge should be available in your case. However, as you can see being successful depends upon the ability of your DUI lawyer to effectively deploy these tactics because an incompetent attorney attempting these methods will likely result in you losing your case and possibly finding yourself in jail.

If you are facing a DUI charge in Chicago or elsewhere in Illinois, contact us today to discuss what method we can use to potentially beat your DUI case.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Can You Refuse Field Sobriety Tests in Illinois?

can you refuse field sobriety tests

Can You Refuse Field Sobriety Tests?

Field sobriety tests are one of the tools a police officer uses before arresting someone for driving while under the influence. Field Sobriety tests are far from being accurate and a person should always refuse field sobriety tests if asked by a police officer. This is especially true considering that there is no penalty for refusing field sobriety tests. Unlike a breathalyzer test, a person’s driving privileges will not be suspended under the statutory summary suspension law for refusing field sobriety tests.

Should I Refuse Field Sobriety Tests?

Aside from a Breathalyzer, the results of field sobriety tests are typically the most compelling pieces of evidence that are offered by the prosecutor in a drinking and driving case. However, Illinois DUI laws do not require or penalize anyone for refusing field sobriety tests. While someone may feel compelled and persuaded by the police officer to submit to a Breathalyzer and avoid the longer suspension period, that similar compulsion does not exist for refusing field sobriety tests. In fact, no one should submit to field sobriety tests; unfortunately most people perform field sobriety tests even when they ultimately refuse the Breathalyzer.

What Field Sobriety Tests Can I Refuse?

Every field sobriety tests can be refused. This includes the standardized field sobriety tests such as the Walk-and-Turn test, the One-Leg Stand test, and HGN test; the non-standardized field sobriety tests; and the field sobriety tests for cannabis such as the Near Point Convergence test and the Romberg Balance test. Portable breath tests (PBTs) can also be refused without fear of receiving a statutory summary suspension.

What Will Happen If I Refuse Field Sobriety Tests?

Unfortunately, refusing field sobriety tests likely will result in you being arrested for a DUI charge. However, in my experience I have never seen someone be let go after submitting to field sobriety tests. Essentially, if an officer is asking you to perform field sobriety tests you are already being arrested for a DUI and your job is to give the prosecutor the least amount of evidence as possible. Breathalyzer test | DUI Attorney

If you didn’t refuse the field sobriety tests and you submitted to them, all hope is not lost. An experienced DUI attorney can still beat your DUI case by having the results of the field sobriety tests excluded from evidence or to have the officer’s testimony discredited.

Jaleel Law P.C. is led by a former prosecutor and a Top 40 Under 40 Attorney who has won DUI cases for his clients even if they did not refuse field sobriety tests. Contact us today to discuss how we can do the same for you.

Actual Physical Control: Can I Be Charged With a DUI If I Wasn’t Driving?

Actual physical control of a motor vehicle in Illinois

Actual physical control of a motor vehicle in Illinois

Actual Physical Control: Can I Be Charged With a DUI If I Wasn’t Driving?

Common sense would lead to the conclusion that driving is a crucial element in any DUI prosecution. However, Illinois DUI laws defy common sense. In Illinois, a person can be charged with a DUI even if they were not driving a car at the time of their Illinois DUI arrest and if convicted you face the same consequences as any DUI conviction.

Illinois DUI laws are found at 625 ILCS 5/11-501 et. seq. Section 501 states that a person can be charged with an Illinois DUI if the person was in “actual physical control” of a motor vehicle while under the influence.

What is Actual Physical Control in Illinois DUI Laws?

A common situation that I deal with is when a DUI client has been arrested after “sleeping it off” – click to read more on the charges pressed. In these situations, it doesn’t really matter whether the keys were in the ignition. The only relevant issue is whether the car that you in could be driven. Actual physical control is ultimately a question of fact that needs to be decided by a trier of fact. Factors a court considers are whether you were in the driver’s seat; where the keys are in the ignition; whether the car was on; and whether the car could be turned on and driven. If you have doubts, you should make sure you ask your DUI attorney these questions.


Driving under the influence is a serious offense and is punished severely. Although driving is in the title of the charge, driving is not required to prove an Illinois DUI. If the State is able to establish beyond a reasonable doubt that you were in actual physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence, the State will be able to prove you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

As a former prosecutor, I can tell you first-hand that actual physical control cases are one of the hardest DUI cases to prove. Now as an Illinois DUI attorney, I’m using my experience as a former prosecuting attorney to help people charged with a DUI based on a theory of actual physical control.

Call my office today and we can talk about how I can help beat your Illinois DUI case.

Aggravated DUI: When a DUI is a Felony In Illinois

Aggravated DUI | Felony DUI Lawyer | Felony DUI Attorney

Aggravated DUI: When a DUI is a Felony In Illinois

Based on reports by attorneys from, an aggravated DUI is a felony in Illinois. Even a first-time DUI offender can be charged with a felony DUI based upon the facts of the case. However, most first and second-time DUI offenders are charged with a misdemeanor DUI offense in Illinois.

What Are the Penalties for an Aggravated DUI in Illinois?

A felony DUI in Illinois is punished severely by lawyers. An aggravated DUI can be charged as a Class 4 Felony, a Class 2 Felony, a Class 1 Felony, and even a Class X Felony. Regardless of classification, a conviction for a felony DUI carries with the potential for incarceration and the revocation of the person’s driving privileges.

What Are the Factors That Make a DUI a Felony In Illinois?

The criminal defense lawyers The Law Offices of Kevin Trombold explained – A DUI is a felony in Illinois if one of 11 aggravating factors are present. If one of these 11 aggravating factors are present, a DUI can be upgraded to a felony even if the person has no criminal background. A reputed lawyer from Flagler Personal Injury Group – accident lawyer miami in florida might also be considered in order to come clean. Here are the factors that make a DUI a felony in Illinois:

1) A 3rd or subsequent DUI arrest will always be charged as a felony DUI.

2) Receiving a DUI while driving a school bus with children under the age of 18 on board.

3) A DUI that results in a car accident where a person suffers permanent disability or great bodily harm and the cause of the injury is because the defendant was drinking and driving.

4) A drunk driving charge becomes an aggravated DUI if the DUI offender has a prior reckless homicide conviction based upon intoxication or impairment.

5) A DUI is a felony in Illinois if the DUI occurs within a school zone and a car crash occurred because of the DUI and another person suffered bodily harm.

6) A DUI is a felony in Illinois if the DUI was the proximate cause of someone’s death.

7) A driving while impaired charge is a felony in Illinois if the DUI occurred when the person’s driving license was suspended or revoked as a result of prior DUI, a statutory summary suspension, or reckless homicide.

8) A drunk driving charge is a felony in Illinois if the offender did not have a valid driver’s license at the time of the DUI offense.

9) An aggravated DUI occurs when the driver knew that the car they were driving was not properly insured.

10) A DUI is a felony in Illinois if the DUI was the proximate cause of bodily harm to a child under the age of 18.

11) A DUI is a felony in Illinois if the DUI offender had passenger under the age of 16 and the person has a prior DUI.

What Should You Do If You Are Facing an Aggravated DUI Charge In Illinois?

An arrest for an aggravated DUI is a very serious matter. A felony DUI conviction can be a life-changing event, not just for you but your entire family. Aggravated DUI is punishable by prison and a maximum fine of $25,000 and many Aggravated DUI charges carry mandatory prison sentences.

Jaleel Law P.C. has the experience and knowledge to beat your felony DUI case. As a former DUI prosecutor, Mr. Jaleel knows how to create reasonable doubt in the State’s DUI case against you. Even if you submitted to a breathalyzer  all hope is not lost, Jaleel Law P.C. has successfully gotten breath tests thrown out of court. Contact us today to see what we can do in your case.

What is an Illinois DUI Evaluation?

What is a DUI evaluation in Illinois?

What is an Illinois DUI Evaluation?

Illinois DUI laws requires that anyone being sentenced on an Illinois DUI must undergo a DUI evaluation. The purpose of the DUI evaluation is to determine the probability that a person will get another DUI in the future. In the DUI evaluation a determination will be made regarding the person’s dependency on alcohol or drugs. The DUI evaluation must be finished and a report created before a judge can sentence anyone on a DUI charge. A DUI evaluation is also required by the Secretary of State before giving a DUI offender a restricted drivers license or reinstating the person’s full driving privileges.

What is the Purpose of an Illinois DUI Evaluation?

During the Illinois DUI evaluation the evaluator will attempt to determine the extent of the DUI offender’s alcohol or drug use and the probability of recidivism. The evaluator will also try to determine the risks to public safety that the DUI offender poses.

What Areas are Reviewed During the Illinois DUI Evaluation?

The Illinois DUI evaluation consists of the following areas:

  1. The DUI defendant’s prior driving history
  2. The results of any chemical test or the blood alcohol level at the time of arrest
  3. The Objective Test score and category
  4. The interview with an evaluator

What Happens During the Interview Portion of the DUI Evaluation?

During a Lane, Hupp, & Crowley website interview the evaluator will ask questions related to the DUI offender’s past and current alcohol or drug use and the DUI offender’s driving background. The DUI evaluator will then take the responses given during the DUI interview and cross-check them with the Objective Test score, the results of any DUI chemical tests, and any other corroborative evidence available.

If inconsistencies exist between the responses given and the DUI offender’s background, the DUI evaluator may recommend that the DUI offender retake the Illinois DUI evaluation, which will delay sentencing and could result in your bond being revoked or you being held in contempt of court.

What Happens When the Illinois DUI Evaluation is Complete?

At the conclusion of the Illinois DUI evaluation the DUI evaluator will recommend an alcohol or drug treatment classification, which will determine the length of treatment and aftercare the DUI offender must undergo to complete his or her sentence.

The classification will be one of the following:

  1. Minimal Risk
  2. Moderate Risk
  3. Significant Risk
  4. High Risk


Pleading guilty or being found guilty of a DUI carries with tremendous consequences including lengthy alcohol or drug treatment. This can occur even if you do not have an alcohol or drug problem. The former DUI prosecutor at Jaleel Law P.C. has the experience to beat your DUI case. At Jaleel Law P.C. a plea of guilty is always a last resort because we do whatever we can to win your DUI case. 

Contact us today to discuss how we can help in your Illinois DUI case.

What Can I Do About My Outstanding Warrant?

outstanding warrant

What Can I Do About My Outstanding Warrant?

An outstanding warrant is issued by a trial judge only if probable cause exists for an arrest. Probable cause to arrest occurs when a defendant misses a scheduled court date. Once a judge issues an arrest warrant you can be arrested at any point. In fact, don’t be surprised if the local police come knocking on your door or coming to your job looking to arrest you based upon the outstanding warrant. At the time the judge issues the warrant the judge will also impose a a dollar amount that will serve as the bail bond.

What Should I Do If There is an Outstanding Warrant For My Arrest Because I Missed My Court Date?

If you miss a court date it is imperative that you contact your attorney immediately. An experienced criminal defense attorney can motion your case back into court to file a motion seeking to have the outstanding warrant quashed. However, it is important to remember that time is of the essence once you miss a court date because the more time passes it is more likely that a judge will seek to execute the warrant, which will result in you being taken into custody. Also, if you miss a court date you are also facing the possibility of forfeiting the bond that was posted.

If you have missed a court date or there is an outstanding warrant for your arrest, contact Jaleel Law today P.C. and speak with a former prosecutor to discuss your options.


An outstanding warrant is not something to take lightly. At any moment the police could come knocking on your door or come to your job and arrest you in front of your friends and family. Avoid the embarrassment, Jaleel Law P.C. has successfully gotten numerous outstanding warrants quashed for its clients without our clients ever being arrested. We know what mitigation evidence to present that will increase your chances of walking out of the courtroom with your freedom. We will file all the necessary motions to get your case back in court so we can deal with your warrant. The Jaleel Law P.C. way can avoid you from even having to turn yourself into the police.

Contact us today, you don’t have to deal with an outstanding warrant on your own.