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Utah Proposes an Increase in Penalties for DUI-Related Fatalities

Most states impose significant penalties for fatal car accidents caused by intoxicated drivers. in hopes of reducing the likelihood of such collisions occurring, the Utah legislature is contemplating increasing the minimum mandatory penalties for DUI fatalities. DUI-related laws are nothing new to the Utah legislature, as they recently passed laws reducing the threshold for per se DUI crimes from 0.05% to 0.08%. If the Utah legislature increases the minimum sentence for DUI fatalities, it would not impact the status of Illinois’s law regarding DUI fatalities, but it could ultimately motivate Illinois lawmakers to insist upon harsher penalties for DUI fatalities. If you were charged with a DUI crime following a fatal accident in Illinois, it is imperative to seek the assistance of an Illinois DUI attorney who can help you protect your interests.

The Proposed Increase for DUI-Related Fatalities in Utah

It is reported that a heated debate unfolded over a bill introduced in the Utah House of  Representatives that aims to increase the minimum prison sentence for Utah residents convicted of automobile homicide. Numerous families of drunk driving victims, along with county prosecutors, law enforcement leaders, and criminal defense attorneys, voiced their opinions before the committee.

Allegedly, during the debate, supporters of the bill, including law enforcement representatives, highlighted the need for stricter penalties, pointing to an increase in impaired driving arrests. However, opponents, particularly criminal defense attorneys, argued against the bill, expressing concerns about prison overcrowding, the complexity of DUI cases, and the potential strain on judges. Despite the opposing views, the committee ultimately voted unanimously in favor of the bill, emphasizing its intent to provide clarity and support for future victims.

Minimum Penalties for DUI-Related Deaths in Illinois

In Illinois, the law takes a stringent stance on DUI-related fatalities, imposing severe penalties for the offense of Aggravated DUI resulting in death, classified as a Class 2 felony. Conviction under this charge carries a mandatory prison sentence ranging from 3 to 14 years, coupled with a substantial fine of up to $25,000. While probation may be a possibility, it typically involves serving a portion of the prison sentence, and parole eligibility may come into play.

DUI crashes that result in the death of two or more people can lead to even more severe legal consequences. If an individual is charged with Aggravated DUI resulting in multiple fatalities, it constitutes a Class 1 felony. Upon conviction, the mandatory prison sentence escalates, ranging from 6 to 28 years. Fines can be substantial, reaching up to $25,000. Similar to other Aggravated DUI offenses, probation might be an option but usually involves serving a portion of the prison sentence.

Meet with an Experienced Illinois DUI Attorney Regarding your Charges

If you are charged with aggravated DUI charges arising out of a fatal DUI collision, you could face substantial penalties if you are convicted. Not all charges lead to guilty verdicts, though, and you should speak to an attorney about what defenses may be available in your case. Attorney Theodore J. Harvatin, of the Harvatin Law Offices, PC is an experienced Illinois DUI attorney who is proficient at handling complicated DUI matters, and if you hire him, he will advocate aggressively on your behalf. Mr. Harvatin can be reached through the online form or at 217.525.0520 to schedule a confidential and free consultation to discuss your options.

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