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Chicago attorney Harold L. Wallin has tried hundreds of cases to verdict; including criminal, DUI/traffic, personal injury and administrative hearings. http://www.illinoisduilawyer.com/

Can an Illinois DUI get expunged? The answer to this question may soon change

Can an Illinois DUI get expunged?  The general answer is no, unless there was a finding of not guilty or it was otherwise dismissed.  A DUI sentence of supervision is not eligible for expungement.

This is one of the many situations where DUI offenses are treated differently than other similar offenses.  Most other misdemeanor offenses are expungeable.  Even some felonies, particularly drug offenses, are also eligible for expungement, because our legislature and courts are recognize the benefit of giving people a chance at a clean slate, and not penalizing people forever, especially over an addiction issue.

DUIs were barred from expungement during the “tough on crime” 1990s.  Over the past few years, the pendulum has been swinging back and I have been hopeful that Illinois would give some hope to past DUI offenders.

Now, it looks like it might.

The synopsis of HB 1634 and an amendment state as follows:

Amends the Criminal Identification Act. Provides that a person may petition for sealing or expungement for a violation of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, aggravated driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or a similar provision of a local ordinance after a period of 10 years after the termination of the petitioner’s sentence if the petitioner has not been arrested for, or convicted of, a subsequent violation.

House Committee Amendment No. 1
Replaces everything after the enacting clause. Amends the Criminal Identification Act. Provides that the court may not order the sealing or expungement of the records of arrests or charges not initiated by arrest that result in an order of supervision for or conviction of driving under the influence of alcohol, other drug or drugs, intoxicating compound or compounds or any combination thereof (DUI) under the Illinois Vehicle Code or a similar provision of a local ordinance; except that the court may order the sealing of one misdemeanor record of arrest or charge not initiated by arrest that results in an order of supervision for or conviction of DUI under the Illinois Vehicle Code or a similar provision of a local ordinance per petitioner if each of the following conditions have been met: (1) the petitioner has not previously been convicted of or placed on supervision for DUI under the Illinois Vehicle Code or a similar provision of a local ordinance; (2) 10 or more years have passed since the termination of the petitioner’s sentence; (3) during the commission of the violation, the petitioner did not proximately cause death or personal injury to any other person or damage the property of any other person and was not arrested for a violation of resisting or obstructing a peace officer; (4) during the arrest or stop of the petitioner by a law enforcement officer for commission of the violation, the petitioner submitted to a test under the Illinois Vehicle Code to determine whether the petitioner was driving under the influence when requested by a law enforcement officer; (5) the petitioner has no other misdemeanor or felony driving charge on his or her driving abstract; and (6) the judge examined the driving abstract of the petitioner petitioning to have his or her records sealed under this provision and made a finding entered on the record that the petitioner did not enter into a plea agreement on a lesser charge other than a DUI under the Illinois Vehicle Code or a similar provision of a local ordinance, and the facts did not support that the petitioner had previously committed a DUI under the Illinois Vehicle Code or a similar provision of a local ordinance.

I’ve been informed by a member of the Illinois State Bar Association that the Office of the Secretary of State opposes this bill.  Hopefully, an agreement can be reached so that a person who gets a DUI (often a young person in their 20’s) does not have to worry about it staying on his or her record for the rest of his or her life, costing employment and other opportunities.

Lake County IL pilot program to help Defendants with court fines open through March 29

Exciting news from Lake County, where court fines are very high.  This is copied from a Lake County website:

Road To Reinstatement Pilot Program


Nationwide, individuals are unable to restore or renew their driving privileges based on inability to pay outstanding fees and fines. Unable to drive, this often prevents individuals from obtaining or maintaining employment so they can support themselves and their family. To combat this issue, Vice-Chair Mary Ross Cunningham and the Lake County Board, with support of its partners, are launching the new Road to License Reinstatement Pilot Program, which will provide qualified individuals the ability to get their license renewed or reinstated.

Apply for the Road to Reinstatement Pilot Program

  1. Complete the Personal Information Form and an Application for Waiver of Court Fees 
    Printed copies are also available at the Lake County Building, 18 N. County Street, 9th Floor, Waukegan, IL 60085.
  2. Obtain your Driving Abstract from the Illinois Secretary of State for $12.
  3. Return the completed documents no later than March 29 by email to communications@lakecountyil.gov, or mail or drop off the documents to the Lake County Administrator’s Office, 18 N. County St., 9th Floor, Waukegan, IL 60085.

About the Program

This program will provide Lake County residents who are unable to pay an opportunity to reduce outstanding costs and get their license renewed or reinstated. The following traffic offenses will not be eligible for participation in this program.

  • DUI citations
  • Habitual/dangerous offenders/offenses
  • Felony cases
  • Child support suspension
  • Financial responsibility suspension
  • Insurance suspension
  • Toll violations
  • Unpaid parking tickets
  • Citations issued outside of Lake County

Frequently Asked Questions

When will I know if I qualify for the program?
Applicants will be notified six to eight weeks after the documents are submitted.

How can I submit my documents? 
Fee waivers and driving abstracts from the Illinois Secretary of State can be submitted by email, mail or dropped off at the Lake County Administrator’s Office, 18 N. County Street, 9th Floor, Waukegan, IL 60085

How can I get my driving abstract?
Driving abstracts can be retrieved at a local DMV. Visit a facility or mail an abstract request form. The cost is $12.

When do I have to turn my documents in? 
All documents are due no later than March 29.

Who do I contact for further questions?
Contact Lake County at 847-377-2929

Arlington Heights to kick off St. Patrick’s Day weekend with a DUI roadblock tonight


From the Patch:

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, IL — St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner, and with it comes plenty of festivities. The Arlington Heights Police Department announced it will enforce activities centered on the St. Patrick’s Day “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign Friday, March 15. According to a release from the department, enforcement activities will include a safety checkpoint scheduled for that date on Rand Road at Beverly Lane.

This is certainly not the only extra DUI enforcement that will be going on this weekend.  Please be safe and use a designated driver.

SF Giants’ Cameron Maybin arrested for DUI


From the San Francisco Chronicle:

Giants outfielder Cameron Maybin was arrested on a DUI charge in Scottsdale early Friday morning, according to the Scottsdale Police Department.

Maybin had a blood-alcohol level of .142, almost twice the legal limit of .08, and failed multiple field-sobriety tests, according to the police report obtained by The Chronicle.

Driving a 2015 gray Range Rover, Maybin was pulled over at approximately 2 a.m. Friday after drifting from one lane to another and driving 55 mph in a 35 mph zone (and then 60 in a 40), according to the report.

Maybin, 31, smelled of alcohol and had bloodshot and watery eyes after consuming five “pretty big” glasses of wine at Ocean 44 in Scottsdale, the report said. He was handcuffed and secured in the back seat of a police vehicle, and his car was impounded.

Harold Wallin selected one of Chicago’s 20 best criminal defense attorneys by Expertise.com


For the fourth consecutive year, Harold L. Wallin has been chosen by Expertise.com as one of Chicago’s 20 best criminal defense lawyers.  Expertise chose the top 20 after looking at 599 attorneys, and judging them based on “25 variables across 5 categories.”

Thank you, Expertise.com!

NYPD wants Waze App to stop DUI roadblock warnings

According to this story from CNN, the New York Police Department has complained to Google, owners of the Waze traffic app, about DUI roadblock alerts:

The nation’s largest police force is demanding Google stop allowing users to post DUI checkpoint data on its live traffic and navigation application, Waze.

The New York Police Department in a letter to Google says allowing users to upload GPS data of police locations is “encouraging reckless driving.”
“Individuals who post the locations of DWI checkpoints may be engaging in criminal conduct since such actions could be intentional attempts to prevent and/or impair the administration of the DWI laws and other relevant criminal and traffic laws. The posting of such information for public consumption is irresponsible since it only serves to aid impaired and intoxicated drivers to evade checkpoints and encourage reckless driving,” NYPD acting Deputy Commissioner Ann Prunty said in a letter to Google dated February 2.
The letter demands that Google remove any current data and continue to take “necessary precaution” to cease the data posting practice on Waze, Google Maps and any other platform owned or associated with Google.
The Waze website advertises the feature on its website, saying, “Get alerted before you approach police.”
“We believe highlighting police presence promotes road safety because drivers tend to drive more carefully and obey traffic laws when they are aware of nearby police. We’ve also seen police encourage such reporting as it serves as both a warning to drivers, as well as a way to highlight police work that keeps roadways safe,” a Waze spokesperson said in a statement to CNN on Thursday.
“There is no separate functionality for reporting police speed traps and DUI/DWI checkpoints — the Waze police icon represents general police presence,” the spokesperson said.

I was surprised to read this story, because in Illinois, the courts have required that police departments provide advance publicity of a roadside safety check in order for it to pass constitutional muster.  This is because a roadblock is an exception to our constitutional guarantee to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.

Illinois courts have held that in order for a roadblock to be legal, the police must take steps to avoid unnecessary intrusion and hassle to the general public.  One of these ways is to provide advance publicity.  Another is to make sure that the roadblock is clearly marked with signage.

In fact, if you are a regular reader of this blog, you will know that I occasionally post information about DUI roadblocks or enhanced enforcement.  I get this information from police department press releases.

In case you are interested, there are additional rules regarding roadblocks, such as that a checkpoint cannot be run at the free discretion of officers.  Instead, supervisory personnel must determine the time and location of the checkpoint, there must be procedural guidelines set up and a plan as to which cars are to be inspected (such as every fifth car) so that it is not random or solely at the discretion of an individual officer.




Vince Young arrested for DUI

From Pro Football Talk:

Former NFL quarterback Vince Young was arrested for DWI in Texas early Monday morning, TMZ Sports reports.

Police pulled over Young around 4 a.m. He was booked into Fort Bend County Jail before posting bail and being released. Fort Bend County is a suburb of Houston, Young’s hometown.

Young, 35 pleaded no contest to drunk driving in 2016 and was sentenced to 18 months probation. He later apologized and said he “understood the seriousness of the situation,” according to TMZ.