Publications

Section Newsletter Articles on Traffic Laws

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.
Back to the basics: Challenging the accuracy of field sobriety tests By Rachel J. Hess Traffic Laws and Courts, August 2010 Generally, in order for a “test” to be considered valid, it must be supported by a reasonable degree of validity in accordance with Frye v. United States.
Defending “unlicensed” drivers in the State of Illinois and creation of an Illinois Special Driver’s License Certification Program By Neal Connors Traffic Laws and Courts, August 2010 Establishing a special driver’s license certification program which is legally verifiable, fee-based, and state-administered, ensures that tens of thousands of unlicensed drivers in Illinois obtain driving privileges subject to regulations established to protect the citizens of the State of Illinois.
The Illinois Supreme Court rules on the constitutionality of suspension of driving privileges if a person receives court supervision for unlawful consumption of alcohol under 21 years of age By Lisa L. Dunn Traffic Laws and Courts, August 2010 Section 6-206(a)(43) of the Illinois Vehicle Code requires suspension of driving privileges if a person receives court supervision for unlawful consumption of alcohol under 21 years of age.
Illinois appellate court affirms suppression of Garrity statements in police official misconduct case Local Government Law, July 2010 In its decision, the Third District Appellate Court concluded that “the ‘Garrity Warnings’ standing alone are sufficient to support the application of Garrity immunity.”
Defendant’s failure to appear in court during a speedy trial demand causes waiver of demand By J. Brick Van Der Snick Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2010 The First District Appellate Court reversed the trial court's finding that Defendant’s failure to appear in court temporarily suspended but did not waive the 160-day speedy trial period.
People of the State of Illinois v. Samuel McPeak, No. 2080572: There must be evidence of the presence of cannabis in the blood, breath, or urine to be found guilty of a DUI based on 11-501(a)(6) By Ava George Stewart Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2010 This decision seems to put the brakes on the statute’s requirement of “any amount of drugs” in the body being sufficient to convict for a DUI.
People v. Nunez, Docket No. 108189, SUPREME COURT OF ILLINOIS 2010 Ill. LEXIS 280 By David B. Franks Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2010 The Supreme Court affirmed the appellate court finding, holding that Defendant was properly convicted of both aggravated DUI and DWLR, and that DWLR is not a lesser-included offense of aggravated DUI.
SCRAM: A sentencing option in alcohol-related offenses By Hon. Gregory Paul Vazquez Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2010 An explanation of SCRAM technology.
Fifth District revisits admissibility of vehicle photograph in auto accident litigation for the third time in three years By Stephen C. Buser Civil Practice and Procedure, May 2010 The Illinois Supreme Court may finally decide to provide lawyers involved in auto accident litigation with a “rigid line” or at least sufficient guidelines of when an expert is or is not required to have vehicle photographs admitted into evidence.
Condition, cause AND foreseeability By Albert E. Durkin Tort Law, April 2010 When an attorney is faced with questions as to when conduct is a cause and when it is only a condition, close attention must be paid to a plaintiff’s conduct.
Defending tickets given for passing a school bus By Rachel J. Hess Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2010 In Illinois, the driver of a vehicle shall stop such vehicle before meeting or overtaking, from either direction, any school bus stopped at any location for the purpose of receiving or discharging pupils.
Failure to comply with Rule 431(b)’s Direction to Inquire of Jurors of the Defendants’ Enumerated Rights may be reversible error By J. Randall Cox Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2010 Rule 431(b) requires a trial court to ask each potential juror individually, or in a group, whether each understands and accepts four principles.
FMCSA bars driver “texting” while driving By William D. Brejcha Energy, Utilities, Telecommunications, and Transportation, March 2010 Electronic devices used for texting are prohibited under current FMCSR safety regulations.
How to avoid multiple court appearances By Ted P. Hammel and Sarah M. Vahey Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2010 The recent Third District Appellate Court Opinion of People v. Ziobro, 2010 WL 184073 (Ill.App. 3 Dist. Jan 13, 2010), reinforces the right of a defendant charged with a DUI, or other traffic offense, who expressly follows the procedures in Supreme Court Rules 504 and 505, to have a trial on the merits on the first appearance date (or now, on the first “clerk” scheduled trial date).
People v. McDonough, 395 Ill.App.3d 194, 334 Ill.Dec.764 (4th Dist. 2009) By David B. Franks Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2010 In this DUI case, the trial court granted Defendant’s motion to suppress evidence on the ground that the State Trooper had improperly seized Defendant. Because the State Trooper did not engage in any police misconduct, the 4th District Appellate Court reversed the trial court, ruling that the exclusionary rule did not apply to this case.
Recent cases and cases of interest By Thomas M. Moran Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2010 Summaries of recent traffic law cases.
Sufficiency of proof for a conviction of DUI and reliability of Field-Sobriety Tests in proving intoxication By J. Brick Van Der Snick Traffic Laws and Courts, March 2010 In an opinion authored by Justice Steigmann, the court reviewed the evidence introduced at trial to determine whether it proved Defendant guilty of DUI beyond a reasonable doubt and also analyzed the Defendant’s claim that the field-sobriety tests were unreliable.
Admissibility of vehicle impact photographs By Timothy W. Kelly Tort Law, February 2010 The standard for the admissibility of photographs of a motor vehicle collision depicting minimal damage to the vehicles in a personal injury trial has been debated since the First District Appellate Court’s opinion inDicosola v. Bowman, 342 Ill. App. 3d 530 (1st Dist. 2003).
Home field advantage in the ICU or neutral setting? Police questioning in hospital ICU did not require Miranda warnings: People v. Vasquez, 393 Ill. App. 3d 185, 913 N.E.2d 60 (2nd Dist. 2009) By Sean D. Brady and Daniel Egan Traffic Laws and Courts, December 2009 In People v. Vasquez, 393 Ill. App. 3d 185, 913 N.E.2d 60 (2nd Dist. 2009), the Kendall County State’s Attorney appealed the trial court’s order suppressing videotaped statements made by defendant Vasquez to two police officers assigned to the Kendall County Major Crimes Task Force who interviewed the defendant in the intensive care unit (ICU) of a hospital after the defendant was involved in a single-car accident that resulted in the deaths of five of the passengers.
Probable cause and driving while revoked—An evolving standard and split between appellate districts By Larry A. Davis Traffic Laws and Courts, December 2009 For many too young to remember, there was a time in the jurisprudence of this state when in order to effectuate a stop for the offense of driving while revoked or suspended absent an independent basis for the stop, e.g., observation of a violation of the vehicle code, the law enforcement officer was required to possess independent knowledge that the individual operating the motor vehicle was, in fact, revoked or suspended.
Recent traffic cases By Thomas M. Moran and James J. Ahern Traffic Laws and Courts, December 2009 Decisions related to recent traffic cases. 
Recent traffic cases By Thomas M. Moran and James J. Ahern Traffic Laws and Courts, September 2009 Recent cases of interest to traffic laws practitioners.
Use and misuse of the MDDP By Lisa L. Dunn Traffic Laws and Courts, September 2009 This article will discuss: (1) the parameters of the MDDP program; (2) the MDDP offender’s responsibilities in conjunction with the use of the MDDP; (3) violations of the MDDP program; (4) sanctions authorized for violations of the MDDP program; and (5) the right to a hearing to contest the cancellation of the MDDP or extension of the summary suspension.
Brainlash: Be aware of this insidious disorder By Scott A. Berndtson Tort Law, June 2009 When you interview your next whiplash-injured client be alert for other latent problems resulting from a brainlash as well and what to do if they exist.
Recent traffic cases By Thomas M. Moran and James J. Ahern Traffic Laws and Courts, June 2009 Recent cases of interest to traffic laws practitioners.