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Report Finds Utah’s Lower Per Se DUI Threshold Did Not Reduce DUI Fatalities

In the majority of the United States, the threshold for a per se DUI offense is a BAC of .08. In Utah, however, the legal limit for a per se DUI offense is a BAC of .05. The reasoning behind the movement to reduce the limit was that doing so would reduce DUI fatalities. Recently, a Utah report evaluated whether the lower limit had resulted in the anticipated outcome, ultimately finding it did not. It is possible that the report will have a chilling effect on efforts to reduce the DUI threshold in Illinois and in other states. If you are charged with a per se DUI crime in Illinois, it is smart to meet with an Illinois DUI defense lawyer about your options for protecting your interests.

Findings Regarding Utah’s Lower Per Se DUI Threshold

It is reported that Utah’s .05 DUI law was passed in 2017. It became effective at the end of 2018. After four years of data analysis, it appears that the law has not produced the expected results, as reported by a Utah newspaper. Specifically, the report explained that in the first year of implementation, there was a notable decrease in DUI-related deaths. In the subsequent three years. however, the number of DUI deaths increased significantly, reaching the highest levels in recent years.

Reportedly, the article asserted, the law’s focus on targeting individuals with blood alcohol levels just above the legal limit (0.05) may not be effective in reducing accidents, as the real problem lies with individuals who have much higher blood alcohol levels, such as those above 0.1 or even 0.15. According to the report, efforts should be directed towards curbing the actions of these higher-BAC individuals to improve road safety rather than focusing solely on those just above the legal limit. Overall, the report found that the purported benefits of the .05 DUI law were overemphasized and that a different approach is needed to address the root cause of DUI-related accidents effectively.

Per Se DUI Crimes Under Illinois Law

In Illinois, as in most statements, per se DUI crimes are established based on a BAC exceeding the legal limit of 0.08%. If a driver’s BAC is at or above this limit, they can be charged with a per se DUI offense, regardless of whether they show signs of impairment. This means that the prosecution does not need to prove impaired driving behavior; the BAC alone is sufficient evidence to pursue DUI charges.

Meet with an Experienced Illinois DUI Defense Attorney

Under Illinois law, people who drive with a BAC of .08 or higher can be charged with a per se DUI offense, but simply because they are charged does not mean that they will be convicted. If you are faced with DUI charges, it is wise to meet with an attorney to discuss your options. Attorney Theodore J. Harvatin of the Harvatin Law Offices, PC, is an experienced DUI defense lawyer who can assess the facts of your case and assist you in seeking the best outcome available. You can reach Mr. Harvatin by calling 217.525.0520 or using the online form to set up a conference.

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