A 34-year-old Illinois man was taken into custody during the early morning hours of Nov. 30 after allegedly driving 81 mph in a 35 mph zone. In addition to a speeding ticket, the Oak Park resident faces a raft of charges including driving while under the influence, drug possession, driving without insurance and having an open container of alcohol in his vehicle.
An officer from the Riverside Police Department says that radar equipment clocked the man's car traveling 46 mph over the posted speed limit on South First Avenue in the vicinity of Parkview Road at approximately 12:31 a.m. The vehicle was also being driven erratically, according to the officer. When he approached the vehicle after conducting a traffic stop, the officer says that he noticed a cup containing ice and liquid in the center console and detected the odor of marijuana emanating from the interior.
The man is said to have admitted to the officer that the liquid was vodka. During an ensuing search, the officer says that he discovered a bottle of vodka, recent receipts from local bars and an undisclosed amount of cannabis. The man was taken into custody after he allegedly failed to satisfactorily complete a series of field sobriety exercises.
When representing clients in situations such as this, experienced criminal defense attorneys may seek to have minor charges and traffic tickets dropped during plea negotiations. Police officers often do what they can to give prosecutors a strong position at the negotiating table, and minor counts like traffic citations are generally dispensed with quickly when more serious narcotics or drunk driving charges are involved.