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What Really Happens to Drivers with Multiple DUIs in Illinois?

Posted on in DUI Defense

IL DUI lawyerYou have probably seen news stories about people who have been arrested for driving under the influence 10 or 15 times, and wondered, “15 DUIs? I thought Illinois was super-strict on DUIs. How was that person not already in prison?” In reality, Illinois law is very tough on driving under the influence. The state simply prefers to keep non-violent offenders out of prison, so they can be working and supporting their families, rather than being a huge financial burden on their fellow tax-paying citizens. In addition, multiple offenders often have records dating back to years when DUI laws and judges were far less strict than they are today.

The Case of the Man with 15 DUI Convictions

One Illinois citizen has had 15 DUI convictions dating back to 1982. His driver’s license was revoked years ago, but he continued to drive without a license, in at least one case showing police a fake ID. He has been arrested in at least 10 Illinois counties, been involved in collisions and committed various traffic violations.

Finally, in 2018, his actions are catching up with him. He sits in Cook County jail awaiting trial on Class X felony charges, which apply to people with six or more felony DUI convictions. While a Class X felony carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, prosecutors have offered him a 15-year sentence in exchange for a guilty plea.

How did he stay out of jail so long? For one thing, Illinois DUI laws were much less strict in the 1980s, when this man had seven misdemeanor DUI convictions. In the next two decades, he had four felony DUI convictions, with a fifth that was reversed on appeal. He has spent a total of over 15 years in county jail or state prison.

Today’s Illinois Laws on Repeat DUI

Under today’s laws, a fifth DUI conviction is a Class 1 felony and a sixth and subsequent DUI conviction is a Class X felony. The penalties for a Class 1 felony include a possible 4-15 years in state prison (probation-only is an option) and a fine up to $25,000. A Class X felony is punishable by imprisonment of six to 30 years (probation without prison time is not an option) and a fine up to $25,000.

Get Help from a Skilled DUI Defense Attorney in Oak Brook

When someone has a prior court supervision or conviction for DUI, a repeat arrest is a serious matter. If you or a loved one was arrested for a repeat DUI in DuPage County, seek the immediate help of an experienced Oak Brook DUI defense lawyer. The attorneys at McMahon Law Office will examine all the details of your case and develop a customized defense strategy. There are many steps we can take to minimize the damage of a DUI arrest. Call 630-953-4400 now for a free consultation.





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