Serving Randolph & Perry Counties
I am a DUI attorney with more than 25 years of experience representing criminal defendants in Belleville, Randolph County, and Perry County. I am a Navy veteran, a former public defender, and a seasoned trial advocate whose results speak for themselves. As a proven trial advocate, I have the skill and insight necessary to help you protect your rights and, if necessary, present a compelling case on your behalf before a jury. When you call me for help following your DUI arrest, you can expect to receive honest, straightforward legal advice and thoughtful insight into the various avenues available to help you defense yourself against your particular circumstances – starting with a free consultation.
Call (618) 266-2617 to retain my services as your Belleville DUI defense attorney.
I successfully completed my treatment and probation period and my case was dismissed.Former Client
DUI in Illinois: Misdemeanor or Felony?
In the State of Illinois, driving under the influence of alcohol varies depending on the circumstances of the arrest. Factors that can affect whether a DUI conviction comes in the form of a misdemeanor or felony often include:
- The age of the driver: If a driver is underage when he or she is charged with DUI, it could increase the period of license suspension for a Class A misdemeanor.
- The driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC): If a driver’s BAC is above 0.16, it could increase an otherwise misdemeanor-level DUI charge to a felony.
- Whether there was a child under the age of 16 in the vehicle at the time the offense was committed: DUI offenses committed while a child under the age of 16 is in the vehicle often result in heftier criminal liability.
- Whether the driver had been previously convicted of DUI and/or related offenses: A first and second DUI conviction are more likely to be considered by a judge to be a misdemeanor, while subsequent DUI offenses are more likely to be penalized as felonies.
- Whether the DUI offense qualifies as “aggravated DUI”: All DUI offenses that result in felony charges are considered aggravated DUI.
Criminal Penalties for Repeat DUI in Illinois (and How to Avoid Them)
The potential criminal liabilities intensify with each successive DUI charge and conviction. In Illinois, the penalties you receive for a DUI conviction vary as follows:
- A first-time DUI conviction is considered a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment of up to 12 months and fines of up to $2,500, revocation of your driving privileges lasting up to 2 years, and suspension of your vehicle registration. If aggravated, a first-time DUI conviction could rise to the level of a Class 4 felony, which could put you in prison for up to 3 years and cost you up to $25,000 in fines.
- A second-time DUI conviction is also considered a Class A misdemeanor and, in addition to the penalties for a first-time conviction, is punishable by up to 240 hours of community service, removal of driving privileges for no less than 5 years (if the prior conviction took place within the past 20 years), and suspension of your vehicle registration. If committed with a BAC of greater than 0.16, you could also face 2 days in prison and at least $1,250 in fines.
- A third-time DUI conviction is automatically considered aggravated DUI and a Class 2 felony, punishable by up to 7 years in prison, $2,500 in fines, loss of driving privileges for at least 10 years, and suspension of your vehicle registration. If committed with a BAC of greater than 0.16, you could also be put in prison for 90 days and face additional fines. If committed while a child under the age of 16 is present in the vehicle, you could also face 25 days of community service and a mandatory minimum fine of $25,000.
- Fourth, fifth, sixth, and subsequent DUI convictions could land you with up to 30 years in prison, fines of at least $25,000, permanent revocation of driving privileges, permanent suspension of your vehicle registration, community service, and additional penalties at the discretion of the court.
Even a first-time DUI charge warrants a strong, well-planned defense. Just one DUI conviction can hurt your job prospects, cost you thousands of dollars in fines, make your insurance premiums skyrocket, and seriously damage your reputation – but that doesn’t have to be your story.
In many instances, courts and prosecutors are open to negotiation and willing to dismiss charges or negotiate the specific penalties issued. This is where having a tenacious, knowledgeable advocate on your side can make all the difference. When you make me your Belleville DUI lawyer, I will take the time to make sure you have a basic understanding of the laws at play in your case, help you assess your options, and give you a realistic sense of how your case is likely to play out.
There are no guarantees when it comes to criminal defense but having a highly qualified attorney on your side can be the difference between painful criminal penalties and a fresh start.
- Proud & Disciplined Navy Veteran
- Proven Track-Record of Successful Cases
- Over 100 Cases Tried in Court