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DUI & Vehicular Manslaughter

Chicago Vehicular Manslaughter Attorney

DUI and Vehicular Manslaughter

DUI in and by itself can carry hefty fines, loss of driving privileges and potential jail time. The penalties and level of prosecution will escalate severely if the defendant is accused of causing a fatal auto accident while driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. There are two different types of homicide, and the key determining factor is the intent to kill or the full knowledge that one's actions are likely to result in a death. Taking of another's life in a traffic accident is not necessarily a criminal act unless severe negligence or reckless behavior is involved. When one drives with a blood alcohol level above .08% this is considered DUI and is not only a criminal offense but it is considered negligent and reckless behavior. Thus, when DUI charges involve a fatal auto accident, charges of vehicular manslaughter will be filed against the defendant.

In some cases fatal DUI accidents have even been prosecuted as murder. This is especially possible in the event that the defendant had multiple prior DUI convictions. Why? Many prosecutors will argue that as the defendant had previous warnings regarding this type of behavior that they had full knowledge that death could occur and still chose to act in a negligent and reckless manner. Whatever the circumstances or how charges are brought, the fact is that if someone dies as a result of DUI the punishment will be severe. Defending yourself in such a scenario would be akin to defending yourself against murder charges. You need the best in a Chicago DUI attorney on your side.

The legal team at Law Offices of Howard J. Wise & Associates has years of DUI defense experience, involving thousands of cases. Our team also includes former prosecutors, and we therefore know how to build a compelling defense based upon our familiarity of both sides of criminal charges. We are ready to fight aggressively to protect you and your rights.

Potential Consequences of a DUI and Vehicular Manslaughter

A negligent operation of a vehicle that results in death is normally tried as a Class 3 Felony. However should the additional factor of DUI come into play, the charge will be raised to a Class 2 Felony. Normally this is based upon a blood alcohol concentration of .08% or above, but do bear in mind that an officer can make a judgment call as well and decide you are too impaired to drive. Either way a conviction can result in some very heavy consequences such as:

  • Three to fourteen years behind bars
  • The suspension or loss of your driver's license
  • Heavy financial penalties and potential remunerations

Contact a Chicago DUI manslaughter attorney at our offices today for experienced, compassionate representation and guidance.