An Illinois Uber driver is facing several criminal charges including a felony drunk driving count for allegedly transporting a paying customer while under the influence of alcohol. The man's Ford Explorer SUV was pulled over by police in northern Kane County during the early morning hours of May 28. He was then placed into custody and handed charges of aggravated DUI and disorderly conduct. He was also cited for a number of traffic violations. The man's bail has been set at $10,000, and he is scheduled to appear in court again on June 28.
Media accounts of the incident reveal that police were called when the man's passenger became alarmed. A deputy with the Kane County Sheriff's Office stopped the man's SUV as it was proceeding eastbound on Plank Road in the vicinity of Muirhead Road west of Elgin. Police reports do not indicate what may have led the deputy or the passenger to conclude that the man was impaired.
The man has been charged with a felony because he was carrying a passenger, and he could be sentenced to a year or more in prison if convicted. The man was released after posting a bond of $1,000, but he has been ordered to wear an electronic monitoring device and refrain from consuming alcohol while the case is pending.
Motorists in Illinois can also face aggravated drunk driving charges when they are involved in serious accidents, have prior DUI convictions or were driving in a school zone or with an expired or suspended drivers license. Experienced criminal defense attorneys may seek to have aggravated DUI charges reduced during plea negotiations by offering prosecutors a speedy resolution. Attorneys could also urge prosecutors to drop criminal charges altogether if police officers appear to have violated rights protected by the U.S. Constitution or toxicology tests may have been performed improperly.