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Driving While License Revoked Leads to Felony Arrest in Illinois

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The night envelopes the car, and allows only two beams of light as illumination.; Travelling at the speed limit, the car runs through the night, like a cheetah through the underbrush of the jungle.; You are the driver.; You know your license is suspended. ;You do not even know that your license is suspended, but you realize that you have failed to pay certain parking tickets, failed to pay child support, and that you were in an accident a couple of years ago without; insurance.;

However, you do not worry about this because you have got more things to worry about.; You have mounting bills that have continued to keep you without sleep.; Sleep deprivation has only increased the amount of incessant tension that permeates your every sense.; You feel that you need to be driving tonight.; But you do not realize that this driving excursion could lead to a felony conviction which could not only take away your license for good but could put you in the State Penitentiary.;

It is a punishable offense for anyone to drive or be in actual physical control of a motor vehicle on any highway of this State at a time when one's driver's license or permit or privilege to obtain a license or permit is revoked or suspended, under Illinois law or the law of another state, except as may be specifically allowed by a monitoring device driving permit, family financial responsibility driving permit, probationary license to drive, or a restricted driving permit.”(West Publishing, 625 ILCS 5/6-303, 2009). ;The statute providing that one who drives when the license or permit or privilege to obtain a license or permit is revoked or suspended shall be punished must be read in the disjunctive. People v. Suddoth, 52 Ill. App. 2d 355, 202 N.E.2d 120 (1st Dist. 1964).

In this article, I will delve into Illinois law, because I am an Illinois Attorney, and our law firm Cunningham & Associates, P.C. works in Illinois Law, particularly in the area of Driving Under the Influence, and other Driving Issues.; Many people think that they get a yellow citation and treat it as a simple traffic ticket.”; They believe that they can handle it themselves.; They believe that they can miss court dates. They believe that they have control of the situation, and continue to drive.; In Illinois, if they are convicted more than twice, they are then facing a very serious felony which can land them in the Illinois Department of Corrections.; The same is true with every single state in the United States. ;Other states also communicate with one another with regard to which driver’s are on suspension.; The statute, which specifically includes suspensions under the law of another state,” allows Illinois to impose criminal liability for driving in Illinois while a license that was issued by another state was revoked, even as a result of conduct that would not be illegal in Illinois. People v. Jett, 328 Ill. App. 3d 468, 262 Ill. Dec. 695, 766 N.E.2d 315 (5th Dist. 2002).

Further, the Driving While License Suspended conviction may be enhanced to a felony, and also used as a predicate felony” to enhance other felonies. Conviction for driving while license revoked (DWLR), which had been increased to a Class 4 felony based on a prior conviction for DWLR, could be used as a predicate felony for an armed violence conviction. People v. Lucas, App. 3 Dist.2007, 310 Ill.Dec. 96, 372 Ill.App.3d 279, 865 N.E.2d 420, appeal allowed 314 Ill.Dec. 832, 225 Ill.2d 657, 875 N.E.2d 11198. State sufficiently established at sentencing that at time of defendant's arrest, defendant's driver's license had been revoked for driving under the influence of alcohol, as required to support convictions for class 2 felony driving under the influence of alcohol and class 4 felony driving while license revoked; presentence report revealed that defendant had prior driving under the influence convictions. People v. DiPace, App. 2 Dist.2004, 288 Ill.Dec. 839, 354 Ill.App.3d 104, 818 N.E.2d 774, modified on denial of rehearing, appeal denied 294 Ill.Dec. 5, 214 Ill.2d 539, 830 N.E.2d 5.

Therefore, the DWLR can become the predicate felony to any other felony, and that suggests increasing the Department of Corrections sentence.; Already, the person holding the yellow citation their second DWLR should already be concerned about a potential felony sentence.;

Hence, when facing a potential felony charge, one should not think of this as an experience that may be easily handled.; One should seek the qualified, skillful professional services of an attorney who has been educated in the areas of Automobile Laws and that specific means Chapter 625 of the Illinois Compiled Statutes if the Attorney is an Illinois Attorney.

The Second conviction of DWLR in Illinois comes as a result of a second conviction, even if the first conviction is not enhanced. Under statute for driving while license suspended (DWLS), defendant was subject to felony sentencing provisions for his second DWLS offense, even though his original suspension was not for an enhanced violation, where his second DWLS offense occurred while his license was subject to statutory summary suspension. People v. Bloomberg, App. 3 Dist.2008, 317 Ill.Dec. 447, 378 Ill.App.3d 686, 881 N.E.2d 615, appeal denied 321 Ill.Dec. 557, 228 Ill.2d 537, 889 N.E.2d 1117, appeal pending.; The statutory summary suspension adds a major burden onto the license itself.; The Statutory Summary Suspension comes as a result of a Driving under the Influence charge.; I specifically use the word charge” rather than conviction” because the DUI charge may result in a statutory summary suspension even if the underlying DUI is discharged or if the defendant is found not guilty, the statutory summary suspension may survive, and may still result in mandatory sentencing related to the statutory summary suspension.

I repeat that a mandatory sentencing exists for the charge of Driving while License Suspended or Revoked (DWLR).; The mandatory sentencing exists which prevents a negotiation between the Judge, the Defense Attorney, or the Prosecuting Attorney. ;Therefore, the defendant wants to make sure that they do not put themselves in a position predetermines their jail sentence. For example, a defendant charged with driving while license was suspended with respect to defendant who had eight prior convictions for driving while license was suspended or revoked was Class 4; felony that subjected defendant to minimum 180 days in jail. People v. Kennedy, App. 4 Dist.2007, 311 Ill.Dec. 168, 372 Ill.App.3d 306, 867 N.E.2d 1154, appeal denied 312 Ill.Dec. 659, 224 Ill.2d 585, 871 N.E.2d 59.

The defendant and the client does not want to put themselves in a position of mandatory sentencing with regard to DWLR.; How does the client prevent this from happening? The client or Defendant must get in touch with an attorney who has worked comprehensively in the automobiles and licensing statutes of that state.; Specifically, the defendant or client should allow the attorney to investigate other legal ways of driving while under suspension. For example, one may petition for a license to drive for business purposes, for educational purposes or for medical purposes.; These petitions have to be heard through a hearing within the judicial system, and are not just granted as a manner of fixed mechanical form filling.; The attorney in this type of work does much more than simply filling out forms.; The DUI, traffic Attorney must master the art of courtroom persuasion, the art of careful, skillful artistic document drafting, and the art of ingenious, creative negotiations. The reader of this article can find this type of attorney at Cunningham & Associates, P.C.;

Craig Cunningham is a published author in the areas of family and criminal law.  In addition to being an attorney, he is also a professor and will educate his clients regarding their case and the law. Clients are able to reach him through several outlets such as, email, cell phone, office line and fax. He will never keep his clients in the dark. With any new developments, he will definitely keep clients informed. For more information please visit at www.cunninghamlaw.cc

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