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DUI (Driving Under The Influence)

During this past season of holiday family gatherings, law enforcement efforts to identify and arrest intoxicated drivers definitely increased.  Maybe some of you were charged with Driving Under the Influence of alcohol and/or drugs (DUI).  If so, you will need a criminal defense attorney experienced with DUI law to ensure that your rights are protected. 

 An officer should not arrest a driver for DUI unless that officer has probable cause to believe that a person is driving a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, drugs or some combination of the two.  Typically, an officer will offer the driver a breathalyzer to determine the level of alcohol concentration in the blood.  In Illinois, a driver is not required to take the breathalyzer test or any field sobriety test offered by the officer. If you take the tests, you may be providing the officer probable cause to arrest you and evidence that may be used against you at trial.

 A person is presumed under the influence if the breathalyzer shows the Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) is .08 (80 mg/dL) or greater under Illinois DUI laws.  If you have a commercial driver’s license, .04 (40 mg/dL) is an illegal BAC limit in Illinois.  

 Many people cling to home remedies to alter the accuracy of the test; these include: drinking coffee, large amounts of water, mouthwash, and breath mints.  None of these methods work.  However, there are many other in court tactics and strategies that can be used to save your driver's license, prevent increases in auto insurance premiums and most importantly, keep you out of jail.  A good attorney can, under certain circumstances, challenge the probable cause for the stop, the reason the officer thought you were driving under the influence, even whether the equipment used to measure the blood alcohol level was calibrated and working properly. You should contact Harris Law Firm immediately when dealing with a DUI charge.

 If you are ever stopped and an officer suspects that you are driving under the influence of alcohol, you should:

1)      Be calm and polite while speaking to the officer;

2)      Remember that you have a right to refuse to answer questions that may incriminate you;

3)      Remember that you have the right to refuse any form of test, including field sobriety tests.

4)      Call Harris Law Firm as soon as possible.

 5)      Call Harris Law Firm.

If you would like more information about this topic, or to schedule a consultation with Jesse Harris, please call (773) 221-4388.  Also, you can email Mr. Harris at