Our top-rated car accident lawyers have previously written about the lax enforcement of drunk driving laws – and the fact that this leniency has allowed repeat offenders to endanger the public to the tune of a fifth or sixth offense without significant, meaningful punishment.
Now, another Chicago-area repeat offender has emerged, this time a man arrested for a seventh DUI offense.
This time, the repeat offender is a Palatine native. The man, Osvaldo Collazo, is 47 years old. This time, he faces charges of aggravated driving under the influence of alcohol. Due to his prior history, he now faces up to 30 years in prison. Bail has been set for Mr. Collazo at $300,000.
Mr. Collazo was arrested after his car was spotted weaving through traffic. After he was stopped by police, he admitted that he was drinking that evening. He was given a breathalyzer test, which showed his blood alcohol level at almost three times the legal limit in Illinois, or .213.
Mr. Collazo was already under a warrant for his arrest, after he failed to appear in court to face his sixth DUI charge. Presumably, Mr. Collazo had failed to appear because a sixth arrest on DUI charges, with five prior convictions, translates to an automatic Class X felony. The mandatory sentencing range for the Class X felony is between 6 and 30 years – the same range Mr. Collazo now faces on his seventh offense.
As our automobile accident attorneys have previously stated, the lax DUI laws, and lenient enforcement of those laws, have led to an extremely dangerous situation on our state’s roadways. Drivers in Illinois know that, until they have racked up numerous offenses, there is no possibility of realistic enforcement. This situation is directly responsible for the increasing numbers of fifth, sixth, and now seventh offenses we are seeing.
While these dangerous drunken drivers are left on our roads, they are free to cause property damage, injuries, disability and death to innocent drivers and pedestrians. This state of affairs is obviously unacceptable. Our attorneys add our voices to others demanding stricter penalties for DUI offenses – before the offender can accumulate so many of them. In the meantime, we stand ready to defend the legal rights of the victims of these dangerous drivers, to help them obtain compensation and justice.
For a free consultation with an experienced Chicago car crash lawyer at Passen & Powell, call us at (312) 527-4500.