You were driving home from a social outing early in the morning. You had a couple beers, but that was hours ago. So you were somewhat surprised to be pulled over by police. You were even more surprised when you were asked to take a breathalyzer. You figured you wouldn’t have a problem, so you just blew. The breathalyzer came back a .01, well below the legal limit, but you were taken to the police station anyway.
Because of heightened publicity about drunk driving, police departments are under pressure to show they are serious about the problem. This could lead to your detention even if you were well below the limit, because it can help make DUI arrest numbers look good.
Take a recent case reported in the Chicago Sun Times on July 20, 2011. A man driving home at 1:30 a.m. was stopped by Naperville police because he was allegedly weaving in his lane. The man performed field sobriety tests, which the police report said he failed. He also blew a .00 breathalyzer. The man was still taken and processed at the police station, but later released without charging. After information about his arrest was given to the press, he brought suit against the City for false arrest and defamation. Naperville police have denied he was arrested to pump up their DUI arrest numbers.
The Chicago Police Department has had its own share of scandals and lawsuits. One well-publicized case involved a police officer who was accused of following gays and lesbians from bars and then arresting them for DUI even after they passed field sobriety tests. As a result, the officer was sued and several of his cases were dismissed. http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local&id=7122462
Another Chicago Police officer was honored as a top DUI-enforcer until it was discovered that he had been falsifying reports and committing perjury. http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/dui-cop-video-031109.html
If you are arrested without cause, contact an attorney immediately. If you are charged with a crime, an attorney can help defend your arrest. Either way, you may have a claim for false arrest.
If you have questions about this or another related criminal or traffic matter, please contact Matt Keenan at 847-568-0160 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
(Besides Skokie, Matt Keenan also serves the communities of Arlington Heights, Chicago, Deerfield, Des Plaines, Evanston, Glenview, Morton Grove, Mount Prospect, Niles, Northbrook, Park Ridge, Rolling Meadows, Wilmette and Winnetka.)