Hire Former Lead DUI Prosecutors
Schedule a Free No Obligation Initial In Person or Phone Consultation
You Will Speak with Attorney Mike O'Donnell or Ingrid Nierman- No Sales Pitch, Just a Straight Forward Assessment of Your Case & What Our Retainer Will Be
Hiring an Attorney Quickly Can Increase You Chances of Getting a Suspension Removed- Don't Wait call Today
" I WOULD HIGHLY RECOMMEND Michael O'Donnell to anyone in need of legal counsel" -Nicole
"Do yourselves a huge favor and call Mr. O'Donnell immediately!!! I'm incredibly grateful I did, can't thank him enough! " - Kris
"Efficient, knowledgeable, and willing to go above and beyond. Ingrid handled my divorce quickly, gave me all of the information I needed in order for me to decide how I wanted to proceed." - Christina
"I tell all my friends if you need a lawyer go to Ingrid. I give her the very best recommendation." - Dave
"Not only was he (Mike O'Donnell) hard working, in my mind the cost was very reasonable and he worked with us on payments (again most want HUGE payment up front before they will even talk to you) but he WON OUR CASE! No need to say more!!! THANK YOU!!!! AMAZING!" -Dana
"Ingrid was awesome never had to step a foot in court and she did exactly what she said she can do and told me all the options upfront and outcomes. Highly recommended!!!" - Azeem
"Michael O'Donnell was my lawyer to get my license back after 10 years of being in the dark about why I couldn't get my license and he was so wonderful. He did so much to help and always kept in contact and let me know everything that was going on! Wonderful person!!!!" - Amber
Driving Under The Influence of Drugs or Alcohol
Both Michael O'Donnell and Ingrid Nierman were lead DUI prosecutors. They have the experience and dedication to evaluate your case and get you the best result possible.
Being charged with driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious and stressful experience. The Law Office of O’Donnell and Nierman will provide you with a free 30 minute phone or in person consultation that will answer your questions. You will talk with Mike O’Donnell or Ingrid Nierman right away.
Hire former lead DUI prosecutors who have the training and experience to get the best results possible. You will be hiring partners Michael O’Donnell & Ingrid Nierman- not an inexperienced associate attorney.
Your FREE consultation will answer your questions, such as:
- Can a breathalyzer or blood and urine test be defeated?
- What do the field sobriety test mean to my case?
- What are the laws that cover my case?
- What will happen to my drivers license?
- What will happen in court?
- Can I keep my license if this is not my first DUI?
- What is the prosecution like?
- Is there a way to remove the suspension of my license?
- How much will I have to pay to retain the Law Offices of O’Donnell & Nierman?
- How much will fines and court cost be?
Hire a drunk driving defense lawyer in DuPage & Kane counties that have the experience to get you the best result possible.
How We Fight For You
We will work to protect your rights. Mike O’Donnell & Ingrid Nierman will:
- Evaluate your case- We will look at everything you, witnesses and the police officer did from the moment you were pulled over.
- We will look to see if proper procedures were followed
- Did the police have reasonable grounds and probable cause?
- Were the field sobriety test administered correctly?
- Was the breathalyzer or portable breath test certified, working correctly and properly administered?
We will develop a comprehensive defense strategy, including:
- Filing Motions to Dismiss
- Filing Motions to Suppress
- Preparing for a Bench or Jury Trial
- Consulting with Expert Witnesses
- Preparing mitigation to put you in the best light possible and negotiating with the prosecution
In most cases there are two parts of a DUI case- The Criminal Case and the Statutory Summary Suspension. What follows is a brief explanation to help you understand what you are facing in court.
First DUI Offense -
This offense is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by court supervision, Conditional Discharge or probation. A Class A misdemeanor offense is the most serious misdemeanor. The maximum sentence is up to one year in jail and fine of up to $2,500. However, absent aggravating factors, most first offenders will receive a sentence of Court Supervision, with DUI counseling, attend a victim impact panel (usually a one-night class) and fines and cost. If your blood alcohol was above a .16, then the minimum sentence includes 100 hours public service and a $500 minimum fine. In addition to any fine, the court cost and fees can push the total owed in a DUI upwards of $3,000. There is also a cost associated with the mandatory DUI counseling. Per Illinois law, prior to sentencing a person must undergo a DUI evaluation and then complete the assessed counseling as part of the sentence. What level a person is sentenced at will have a big impact on the amount of money and time a person will have to spend on counseling. Often a person will have at least a year to get everything done. Keep in mind that receiving a sentence Court Supervision for a DUI does not “fall off” your record and there is no way to expunge it. While you can say, you have never been “convicted” of a misdemeanor offense, the sentence of Court Supervision stays on your record and you will be ineligible for Court Supervision if you are every found guilty of a second DUI in the future. Another advantage of Court Supervision is that your license will not be revoked for DUI. However, the Statutory Summery Suspension is independent of this and may still prevent you from driving without a BAID device.
Second DUI Offense-
Someone who has been convicted of Reckless Driving or DUI (in any state) or received court supervision is ineligible for court supervision again and is considered a “second offender”. This offense is also a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by Conditional Discharge or Probation. A Class A misdemeanor offense is the most serious misdemeanor. The maximum sentence is up to one year in jail and fine of up to $2,500. A sentence of Probation is considered more significant then Conditional Discharge because you will be assigned a probation officer and must comply with all conditions that probation deems appropriate in addition to any specific sentencing conditions. The minimum sentence is 5 actual days in jail or 240 hours public service. If your blood alcohol was above a .16, then the minimum sentence includes 2 additional days in jail and a $1,250 minimum fine in addition to the mandatory fees and court cost. If you were transporting a child under the age of 16 at the time of the offense, then the minimum sentence includes an additional $2,500 fine and 25 days of public service to benefit children. Judges will often make “no alcohol or drug consumption” a condition of sentence for repeat DUI offenders. This is usually enforced by the wearing of a SCRAM alcohol detection bracelet and or urine testing. Upon a conviction for DUI, the Secretary of State will revoke the persons drivers license. If you qualified for a BAID device, your permit will also be revoked. Your only remedy to drive is to apply for a Restrictive Driving Permit through the Secretary of State.
First or Second DUI Offense while your license is Suspended or Revoked for DUI-
This is a Class 4 Felony offense punishable with up to three years in prison or Conditional Discharge or Probation. If not sentenced to prison, the minimum sentence includes at least 10 actual days in jail or 480 hours public service and also DUI counseling. Upon conviction for a DUI, the Secretary of State will revoke a person’s drivers license.
Third DUI Offense-
This is a Class 2 felony offense punishable with 3 to 7 years in prison or Conditional Discharge or Probation. If not sentenced to prison, the minimum sentence includes at least 10 actual days in jail or 480 hours public service and also DUI counseling. Upon conviction for a DUI, the Secretary of State will revoke a person’s drivers license.
Fourth DUI Offense-
This is a Class 2 Felony offense punishable with 3 to 7 years in prison. This is a “Non-Probationable” offense- which means the only sentencing option for the judge is prison. Upon conviction for a DUI, the Secretary of State will revoke a person’s drivers license.
Fifth DUI Offense-
This is a Class 1 Felony offense punishable with 4 to 15 years in prison. This is a “Non-Probationable” offense- which means the only sentencing option for the judge is prison.
Sixth (or more) DUI Offense-
This is a Class X Felony offense punishable with 6 to 30 years in prison. This is a “Non-Probationable” offense- which means the only sentencing option for the judge is prison.
Statutory Summary Suspension
The main consequence of the civil part is that the Secretary of State will suspend your licenses for either 6 months, 1 year or 3 years. If this is your first DUI arrest and you submit to the breathalyzer and the result is above .08, the suspension will be 6 months. If you refuse to submit to the breathalyzer, the suspension will be 1 year. Three-year suspensions come into play for people with prior DUI’s or Statutory Summary Suspensions. The “Summary” part means that if you take no action, the suspension will go into effect without a judge needing to make a ruling 46 days after your arrest. Furthermore, if you wait too long (90 days from the date of your arrest) you lose the right to contest the suspension at all. This part of a DUI prosecution is a hybrid of civil procedure and criminal law. There are two types of basic challenges to a Statutory Summary that you typically see. The first is a hearing trying to establish that the arresting officer lacked Reasonable Suspicion or Probable Cause to place you under arrest for DUI. The second is Due Process violations. See below for more information on DUI defenses.
Failing Chemical Testing -
First offense — Suspension of driving privileges for six months (eligible for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit) .
Second or subsequent offense within five years — Suspension of driving privileges for one year .
Refusing to Submit to Chemical Testing-
First offense — Suspension of driving privileges for one year.
Second or subsequent offense within five years — Suspension of driving privileges for three years.
Reasonable Suspicion – Did the Officer Have Grounds to Conduct a Traffic Stop? Under both the State and U.S. Constitution an officer cannot simply pull a vehicle over for no reason. The law requires that law enforcement must have specific and articulable facts that a crime has been committed or is about to be committed. This can’t be a “wild hunch”. Most DUI cases arise out of a simple traffic stop. While the officer is interacting with the driver, he or she develops Reasonable Suspicion to believe that the driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Through further investigation, if the officer develops Probable Cause to believe the person is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, then the officer can conduct the arrest. So, if your attorney can show that there was no moving or equipment violation in the first place, then everything that happened after the illegal traffic stop is suppressed and the suspension will be rescinded. This is the case regardless how strong the evidence of DUI is.
Probable Cause – Did the Officer Have Grounds to Place You Under Arrest for DUI? Should the officer have placed you under arrest for DUI or simply let you go? This is Probable Cause. The officer must be able to articulate specific facts supporting a belief that the driver is under the influence of illegal drugs, alcohol, cannabis (medical or otherwise), or drugs in order to arrest the person for DUI. Everything you do and say can be used by the officer- not just the Field Sobriety Test. The officer can use observations of your speech, appearance, odor or other signs of impairment. From the moment the officer stopped you, he is looking at how you answer his questions and if you have difficulty retrieving your drivers license or insurance card. When he asks you to get out of the car, a thorough officer is looking to see if you use the door to help you exit. Officers will look for other signs of impairment including slurred or mumbled speech and bloodshot and glassy eyes. Officers will look to see If you sway or have any trouble walking both before, during and after the Field Sobriety Test. To put it simply, when you are suspected of DUI, a thorough officer is making note of everything you do and say. Keep in mind that just because a judge finds that the officer had Probable Cause, does not mean there is proof Beyond a Reasonable Doubt.
A Rescission of a Statutory Summary Suspension Based on Due Process Grounds – Experienced DUI attorneys, like the Law Office of O’Donnell & Nierman know what to look for to see if your rights were violated. When an officer submits paperwork to initiate a statutory summary suspension, they need to follow strict guidelines to ensure that the suspension can withstand court challenges. The Secretary of State has the right to suspend your drivers license based on a “Sworn Report” being filed by the arresting officer. However, the law requires some basic tenants of Due Process. For example, the paperwork (the Sworn Report) must be filled out correctly. There are several other grounds that an experienced DUI attorney may be able to spot. One such requirement is that the prosecution must give you a hearing within 30 days or the first court date- if you formally request it in writing. So a client that hires an attorney immediately after his or her arrest, has a greater chance of getting the suspension rescinded. This is because if the officer fails to appear on the first court date and the petition for a hearing was filed, the prosecution may not have time within the 30 day window to get the officer into court. This happens more often then you would think. The result usually is that the suspension get rescinded- meaning removed. There are other Due Process violations that we may be able to identify that can lead to the same result.
Get In Touch
For After Hours Assistance Call: 630-601-7927
290 South County Farm Rd.
Wheaton, IL 60187
For After Hours Assistance