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The Most Serious DUI Charges in Illinois 

 Posted on August 30, 2023 in Criminal Defense

Joliet Criminal LawyerA simple DUI is bad enough. Even a first-time DUI that does not involve any aggravating circumstances like bodily injury or carrying a child passenger can result in jail time. In most cases, a simple DUI is a misdemeanor. Misdemeanors are generally punishable by up to a year in jail. If this is not your first DUI, you are more likely to face harsh sentencing as courts are less forgiving of repeat mistakes. A felony DUI is far more serious. Some forms of felony DUI can lead to years of time in prison, and all are taken very seriously in Illinois. If you are facing a felony DUI, it is very important that you take the situation seriously and focus on your defense. Your freedom is in jeopardy and you could face a number of other legal and societal consequences if you are convicted. An attorney may be able to work towards reducing the seriousness of the charges in plea bargaining or may be able to identify another strong defense strategy. 

Types of Felony DUI Charges

Not all felony DUIs are equally serious. As a general rule, the more harm done or risked, the more serious the charge is likely to be. The most serious DUI charges in Illinois include: 

  • DUI resulting in death - The most serious of all DUI charges are those involving the death of another party. Causing a fatal car crash is considered the worst outcome of driving while intoxicated. People who are convicted of DUIs with fatal crashes often face years or decades behind bars. 

  • DUI with bodily injury - Causing serious bodily harm to another person while driving drunk is a serious felony charge. Courts tend to issue more harsh sentences in DUI cases that lead to serious injury. 

  • Repeat DUIs - While a second DUI can be charged as a misdemeanor, a third or subsequent DUI is almost always charged as a felony offense. Courts tend to look down on repeat offenders and may issue harsh sentencing, believing it is necessary to protect the public safety. 

  • DUI with child passenger - Driving drunk with a child in the car puts the child in serious danger. 

If you are facing one of these charges, you must take steps to protect yourself right away. Calling an attorney is likely the best place to start. 

Contact a Joliet Felony DUI Lawyer

McNamara Phelan McSteen, LLC is skilled in felony DUI defense. Our experienced Joliet DUI attorneys will do all we can to present the best defense possible. Call 815-727-0100 for a complimentary consultation. 




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