aggravated dui

Aggravated DUI in Illinois: Factors that can Elevate Charges and Penalties

While every accusation that a person has driven while drunk or high in Illinois is a serious matter, the fact is that most DUIs are misdemeanors. Even if a person endures a conviction in court through either an admission of guilt or a jury’s verdict, they will be able to return to a semi-normal routine after they pay a fine and potentially spend a short time in jail.

Sadly, this is not the case when an Illinois DUI case moves forward as a felony or involves aggravating factor. These are always severe accusations, and a conviction is likely to follow a person for the foreseeable future. Understanding the factors that lead to aggravated DUI in Illinois is essential for planning a proper defense. The team at Liberty Law, P.C. is ready to explain these factors and work with you to help defend your driving privileges and freedom. Contact them today to learn more.

Common Aggravating Factors in Illinois DUI Cases

The law in Illinois presumes that a DUI case will move forward as a common example of a violation under the law according to 625 ILCS 5/11-501. This means that the case will not assume that any aggravating factors exist. However, police officers making an arrest and prosecutors pursuing charges will be on the lookout for any evidence that may serve to justify a more severe DUI case.

Perhaps the most common example of an aggravating factor in an Illinois DUI case is when a driver has a prior DUI conviction on their criminal record. Under state law, a third DUI conviction is a class 2 felony. This means that a conviction will come with a three-to-seven-year prison sentence. Having prior DUI convictions will also increase the potential fine for a conviction and how long a person will lose their driver’s license.

Other aggravating factors in DUI cases involve extremely dangerous or reckless behavior. These may include:

  • Driving with an extremely high blood/alcohol level
  • Committing DUI while having a minor in the vehicle
  • A DUI that results in the serious injury or death of another

Each of these examples are likely to result in felony DUI charges, even if a person has no prior instances of DUI on their record. The team at Liberty Law, P.C. is ready to explain the factors that may lead to aggravated DUI charges in Illinois.

Preparing Defenses Against Aggravated DUI Charges

Always remember that prosecutors in any criminal case, such as DUIs, bear the burden of proving that a defendant committed the offense beyond a reasonable doubt. This means that not only must a prosecutor show that a person violated Illinois’ DUI law, but also that they committed the aggravating offense that may lead to enhanced sentencing.

For example, a prosecutor must show prior DUI convictions in either Illinois or another state if they want to pursue a felony DUI case. Similarly, they must show that a driver had an enhanced blood/alcohol level, had a child in the vehicle, or caused severe bodily harm to another. An attorney could help rebut these accusations. This can result in a DUI case moving forward as a mere misdemeanor instead of as a severe felony.

Contact an Attorney at Liberty Law, P.C. Now to Hear More About Aggravated DUI Charges in Illinois

If you are facing accusations of aggravated or felony DUI in Illinois, you need to move quickly to protect yourself. These cases come with mandatory prison sentences and will eliminate your ability to drive for the foreseeable future. Aggravated DUI charges in Illinois may result from having a prior history of drunk driving, causing injury or death to another, or having an elevated blood/alcohol level far beyond the legal limit.

Reach out to the team at Liberty Law, P.C. today. They are ready to explain why a DUI case in Illinois is moving forward as a felony and are prepared to defend your rights and privileges.