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Although necessary for the greater good, the ‘Shelter in Place’ order imposed by Illinois, among other states, may have unintended effects on many of our clients and others with past drug or alcohol dependency.

The closure of bars, restaurants and other gathering places along with the social distancing recommendation encouraged by the government and media is resulting in a higher degree of isolation. The inability of the average person to socialize with others may result in the onset of anxiety, loneliness and depression. As a consequence, those individuals susceptible to such feelings may attempt to ‘self-medicate’ through the consumption of alcohol or drug-use. These feelings may make it even more difficult for those with pre-existing alcohol or drug problems who are in recovery to avoid relapse.

Recent media reports have indicated that there has been a substantial increase in alcohol and marijuana purchases during the current COVID-19 health crisis. Liquor stores and cannabis dispensaries are both deemed essential businesses and remain open. Bars and restaurants still have the ability to sell alcohol to customers through delivery as well as curbside pick-up.

We are closely tracking the rapidly evolving public health and community concerns related to the spread of COVID-19. Rest assured that The Davis Law Group, P.C. is taking all available steps to remain accessible to our clients as we continue to act in accordance with their best interests during this difficult time. Our clients’ well-being is our top priority, click here for additional information and resources.

Please see below for answers to some frequently asked questions, and feel free to reach out to us for assistance with your legal matter.

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Statistics from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health show a decline in DUI throughout the United States. In 2014, the latest year for which data was available, the rate of drunken driving hit a 13-year low. 11.1% of Americans 16 years and older told interviewers that they had driven under the influence of alcohol within the past year, compared to 15.3% in 2002.

Despite the decline in DUI, according to the NHTSA, 10,265 people were killed in crashes involving alcohol impaired motorists in 2015. Statistics also show that American drivers are on the road more than in previous years.

Young adults, especially men ages 21-25 had the highest rates of driving under the influence. More than 1 in 5 of these men drove under the influence of alcohol in 2014 and almost 1 in 7 drove under the influence of drugs. However, young adults have also seen the greatest reduction over the past 13 years, a drop of more than 10% for drivers 21-25 and a drop of more than half for drivers 16-20.

Under Illinois law, the state’s attorney may petition on behalf of a local law enforcement agency, for the seizure of an automotive vehicle when it is used in the commission of any serious felony crime. Whether the petition is granted is solely in the judge’s discretion. In addition to drug crimes, cars may be seized for DUI, driving on a revoked license based on DUI, gambling and stalking. Of the 126 vehicles seized by the Naperville Police Department between 2012 and 2015, only 26 were involved in drug crimes.

Seized vehicles are typically sold at auction but may be used in undercover operations or training. Auction proceeds go to the police department responsible for the arrest as well as the municipality or county where the arrest occurred. Naperville made almost $170,000 off of the cars seized between 2012 and 2015, with almost $17,000 going to the police department.

Last year alone, DuPage County seized 405 vehicles. So far this year, DuPage has seized 189 vehicles, according to a spokesman for the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office.

Ford of Europe has announced a new technology that could help you avoid that next speeding ticket. Its new S-max car reads speed limit signs with a camera mounted on the windscreen. The car then adjusts its speed to stay within the confines of the speed limit and will slow down your car if you are driving too fast.

The new technology, known as Intelligent Speed Limiter, controls the amount of fuel delivered to the engine rather than pressing on the breaks to slow down the car. The technology may be turned on and off and pressing firmly on the gas will temporarily override the system.

This may mean that in the future, speeding tickets will be obsolete. But for now, if you receive a speeding ticket, please do not hesitate to call our office at 847-390-8500 for representation.

The Illinois tollway announced today that it will offer drivers the ability to check images of license plates and dispute tollway fines online. If you receive a violation notice, there is now a way to verify that it was your vehicle that missed the toll. Illinoistollway.com now has a feature that allows users to determine whether the violation was proper issued.

The Illinois tollway generates violations after three missed tolls in a two-year period. After review, a driver may dispute a mistake citing either “plate incorrect” or “missing image.” The Illinois State Roll Highway Authority will review these disputes and send decisions via email. This procedure saves a considerable amount of time from the old process.

During a test period in March, almost 900 drivers viewed license plate images using the new feature. Forty disputes were filed through the website during this timeframe.

A Wood Dale man was sentenced to nine years in prison for DUI crash that killed two friends. Erik C. Ecker was allegedly driving under the influence when he overturned his Jeep and crashed into a guard rail on I-355. The Jeep caught fire and Anthony Ishu and Cynthia Botello were trapped inside. Ecker managed to pull is girlfriend out of the car but could not rescue his friends in the back seat. Witnesses report that he was traveling at speeds over 100mph at the time of the crash. His BAC level was an alleged .147. Ecker must serve eighty-five percent of his sentence before his is eligible for parole. He has a prior 2004 DUI arrest which was amended to reckless driving.

9 years for Wood Dale man in DUI crash that killed two friends, www.dailyherald.com, June 24, 2010

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