Illinois Politician Fined for First-Time DUI Offense

A local Illinois politician is finding himself in hot water after he was arrested for driving under the influence.

State Representative Randy Ramey, chair of the DuPage County Republican Party, was pulled over in August after police observed him driving erratically and crossing the center line. Ramey admitted that he had been drinking and was found to have a .179 blood-alcohol content (BAC) - over twice Illinois' legal driving limit of 0.08.

The DUI was Ramey's first offense. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to one year of court supervision. He was also fined $1,750 and ordered to participate in counseling, attend a victim impact panel and perform 100 hours of community service.

Penalties for First-Time DUI Offenses

Ramey's punishment is in line with the standard penalties for a first-time DUI offense.

Under Illinois law, a DUI first offense is a misdemeanor that carries a minimum penalty of a one-year revocation of driving privileges. Offenders with a blood-alcohol content of .16 or more will also face a mandatory minimum $500 fine and at least 100 hours of community service.

First-time DUI offenders face felony charges if they harm another person in the course of their drunk driving. A DUI resulting in a crash that caused great bodily harm or permanent disfigurement or disability is punishable by one to 12 years in prison. DUIs that result in death are charged as felonies and punishable by imprisonment for three to 14 years for the death of one person, and six to 28 years in cases involving multiple fatalities.

A DUI charge, even first-time ones, are serious and can come with life-changing consequences. If you or a loved one has been charged with DUI, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help protect your rights.