Publications

Section Newsletter Articles on Traffic Laws

Is the Illinois summary revocation law enforceable? By Larry A. Davis Traffic Laws and Courts, January 2014 As things currently stand, law enforcement officers should be properly trained that where probable cause to arrest for DUI exists prior to requesting testing, warnings must be given pursuant to Section 11-501.1 and where such reasonable grounds do not exist, warnings must provided under Section 11-501.6.
Civil liberty under fire: Can local law enforcement officials force blood tests from a drunk-driving suspect without a warrant? By Maggie Noe Human Rights, December 2013 In January 2013, the United States Supreme Court heard the case of McNeely v. Missouri, and ruled the non-consensual warrantless blood test violated the suspect’s right to be free from unreasonable search of his person.
Alex, I’ll take ‘How state’s attorneys can avoid jeopardy after a jury is sworn in’ under People v. Martinez for 500 By J. Brick Van Der Snick Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2013 An exploration of the Illinois Supreme Court’s ruling in People v. Martinez to see why Illinois has decided to deviate from the long-established rule that jeopardy attaches to a defendant upon the swearing in of a jury.
City of Highland Park v. Kane, 2013 IL App (2d) 120788; 2013 Ill. App. LEXIS 228 By David B. Franks Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2013 In analyzing whether a stop is proper, a Court is not limited to bases cited by the Officer for effectuating the stop.
Defending a person charged with driving while revoked who has obtained a license issued in error or through fraud after revocation By Larry A. Davis Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2013 A summary of the recent case of People v. Jackson.
Warrantless blood draws discussed by U.S. Supreme Court By Ava George Stewart Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2013 The case of Missouri v. McNeeley now puts the government on notice that where there is a blood draw, without a warrant, the government should be prepared to lay out the reasoning to support the exigent circumstances exception to the Fourth Amendment.
Objects under the rearview mirror may be more of a material obstruction than they appear By Rob Shumaker Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2013 Objects dangling from the rearview mirror may justify a traffic stop but only if they constitute a material obstruction. The author addresses the case law on this issue and offers practice tips to determine whether an object materially obstructs a driver’s view of the road.
Six tips for assisting the commercial driver with a traffic ticket By Jeremy J. Richey Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2013 Some helpful advice for the practitioner to consider when accepting the commercial driver as a client.
HOUSE BILLS—Criminal, Juvenile & Traffic By Steve Baker Criminal Justice, December 2012 Recent legislation of interest to criminal law practitioners.
A primer on motions to vacate in traffic cases By Lisa L. Dunn Traffic Laws and Courts, September 2012 A properly pled §5/2-1401 petition to vacate can be a highly effective and expeditious means to “correct” your client’s actions from failing to appear in court and the resulting suspension of his driver’s license.
Relief from a mandatory revocation for causing death by violation of the vehicle code By J. Randall Cox Traffic Laws and Courts, September 2012 relatively new section of the Vehicle Code provides for the mandatory revocation of driving privileges if someone violates a provision of the Vehicle Code, and that violation proximately causes the death of another.
Uncounseled misdemeanor convictions may lead to felonies charges under People ex rel. Glasgow v. Kinney By Ted P. Hammel and Sarah M. Vahey Traffic Laws and Courts, September 2012 In the recent Illinois Supreme Court case of People ex rel. Glasgow v. Kinney, the Court held that prior uncounseled misdemeanor DUI convictions may be considered in determining whether a latter offense will be elevated to a nonprobationable Class 2 felony.
Analyzing People v. Smith: Is the key to improper lane usage what is in the officer’s mind? By Rachel J. Hess Traffic Laws and Courts, May 2012 Even though the case was decided more than 15 years ago, what actually constitutes a violation of improper lane usage is still hotly debated among the districts.
People v. Smulik By David B. Franks Traffic Laws and Courts, May 2012 The Appellate Court concluded that the anonymous tip in the matter at bar lacked predictive value. The Appellate Court concluded that the informant did not predict anything; the informant merely reported contemporaneous observations as to the description and location of a vehicle she was following.  
People v. Barwan, et al By David B. Franks Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2012 Three unrelated cases, involving the same issue, were consolidated for decision. Each of three defendants were charged by indictment with driving under the influence of alcohol.
People v. Price By David B. Franks Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2012 The arresting officer’s testimony regarding the size of the air freshener, how it swayed back and forth, and that it would have obstructed defendant’s view based on defendant’s sitting position, provided the arresting officer reasonable suspicion, based on a material obstruction, to justify the arresting officer stopping defendant’s vehicle.  
Review of People v. Hall By Donald J. Ramsell Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2012 In this case, because the defendant was a judge, the Illinois Attorney Generals’ office was brought in to handle the matter. Two weeks later, after the assistant attorney general learned that the blood samples were still at the hospital, they were ordered to be released to authorities for testing at the Illinois State Police laboratory. The samples did not contain a preservative.  
Sixty-two days means exactly that! By J. Brick Van Der Snick Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2012 A discussion of the ramifications of the People v. Clairmont & Fernandez decision.
Summary suspension notice through the mail By Edward M. Maloney Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2012 Counsel should advise clients that if they receive a postcard indicating that they have a letter for certified mail, they should contact their attorney first before accepting and signing for the letter.
You think your client is going to lie on the stand—The classic dilemma of a criminal defense lawyer By Juliet Boyd Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2012 If faced by this dilemma, a lawyer should review the cases, the approaches and the rules of professional conduct. The lawyer must carefully analyze the facts of their situation. It may also be helpful to call the confidential hot line at the ARDC for advice or to pose a hypothetical to an experienced colleague. Unfortunately there is no simple resolution to this question.
HOUSE BILLS—Criminal, Juvenile & Traffic By Steve Baker Criminal Justice, February 2012 Recent cases of interest to criminal law practitioners.
Primer on Standardized Field Sobriety Tests & Preliminary Breath Tests for DUI arrests By J. Brick Van Der Snick Traffic Laws and Courts, December 2011 A basic outline of the SFSTs and PBT in the State of Illinois. 
People v. Geier By David B. Franks Traffic Laws and Courts, August 2011 Initial probable cause did not dissipate merely because Arresting Officer continued to follow motorist for two to four miles, after observing traffic violation, before stopping motorist.
Summary suspension after a motor vehicle accident By Lisa L. Dunn Traffic Laws and Courts, August 2011 A discussion of the recent appellate case of Odom v. White, in which the injuries suffered in two motor vehicle accidents met the statutory definition of a type A injury, which confers implied consent for a blood-alcohol test.
People v. Aronson: Missing video results in rescission due to inferences drawn in favor of the defendant By Sean D. Brady Traffic Laws and Courts, May 2011 A summary of the recent case of People v. Aronson.
Revenue sharing analysis for traffic citations By Marty Shanahan Local Government Law, January 2011 A look at how revenues are shared among the different departments within a municipality.
People of the State of Illinois v. Marina Kladis, No. 1-09-0686. Discovery sanctions in a misdemeanor DUI case can bar testimony of an arresting officer when a videotape has been discovered By Ava George Stewart Traffic Laws and Courts, November 2010 Kladis provides a roadmap for practitioners to avoid the destruction of discovery as well as what to do in the event the discovery is inadvertently destroyed.
People v. Maldonado By David B. Franks Traffic Laws and Courts, November 2010 The appellate court concluded that the DUI statute was ambiguous because it prescribed mutually exclusive sentencing schemes for a defendant who has been convicted of committing a sixth or subsequent DUI.
A primer on breath, blood, and urine testing when performed for law enforcement purposes By Nancy G. Easum Traffic Laws and Courts, November 2010 A discussion of the rules regarding chemical testing in Illinois.
The appellate court affirms grand jury’s subpoena power to issue subpoenas in DUI cases By J. Brick Van Der Snick Traffic Laws and Courts, August 2010 An examination of the 5th District Appellate Court opinion of People v. Bauer.