Josh Brent, a professional football player for the Dallas Cowboys, was charged with Driving Under the Influence, also known as DUI, DWI or drunk driving. He was involved in accident that resulted in the death of his passenger and teammate, Jerry Brown.
Both men played college football at the University of Illinois, which is located in Urbana-Champaign. During his college career, Brent was arrested for an Illinois DUI.
If at the time of his DUI arrest Brent was under the age of 21, it is unlikely he would have received a disposition known as court supervision, as Champaign County judges rarely approve of that disposition. Illinois law mandates that anyone convicted of DUI shall have his license revoked. 625 ILCS 5/6-205. How long the revocation will be in effect depends upon his previous record of DUI offenses.
If there has been a single prior revocation over the past 20 years, the second DUI conviction would result in a revocation for five years. If the prior revocation occurred more than 20 years ago, a second conviction would cause a revocation of just one year. Regardless of the time frame, one convicted of DUI for a third time would be revoked for ten years. 625 ILCS 5/6-208
The rules for a fourth or later conviction are trickier. If the fourth conviction occurred as a result of a DUI arrest that was made before January 1, 1999, the revocation would run for ten years. However, if the arrest occurred after January 1, 1999, the revocation would be permanent, meaning that Illinois would not allow the driver to ever receive a license. 92 Illinois Administrative Code §1001.420(o), 625 ILCS 5/6-208(b)4; 625 ILCS 5/6-205(c)(1).
Nor can such a person apply even for a Restricted Driving Permit (RDP). 6-206(c)3 The idea is, the offender may never drive again in Illinois.
Out-of-state DUI convictions are handled in one of two ways. If the state where the arrest occurred reports the conviction to Illinois, that conviction counts in determining the length of the revocation. In addition, states now share DUI conviction information through the National Registry. As a result, on many occasions, the offense state has not reported the conviction to Illinois but Illinois has run a problem driver pointer system check and “discovered” this offense.
“Discovered” convictions do no matter if they are the second or third conviction. However, if the offense would constitute a fourth conviction, for the purpose of the lifetime revocation, it must be counted in the equation. Girard v. White, 356 Ill. App. 3d 11, 826 N.E.2d 517, 292 Ill. Dec. 376 (1st Dist. 2005) This harsh result can also make it impossible for another state to grant someone a driver’s license, as under the Driver’s License Compact, member states are required to honor revocations from other member states. The result is that the person may be barred from every driving again anywhere in the United States.
A disposition of court supervision is not a conviction for any reason (other than CDL situations), including in determining how long a driver may be revoked. However, supervision does count for determining the length of a statutory summary suspension and in felony enhancements based upon prior offenses.