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Everything You Need to Know About Aggravated Speeding: Illinois

Speeding: Leading Cause of Accidents in Illinois

 

Speeding while driving can lead to death, injury, or destruction of property. Drivers who drive too fast endanger not only themselves but also the other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. Per the 2022 Illinois Highway Safety Plan, speeding remains one of the state’s most common causes of motor vehicle accidents.

It noted that Illinois has more fatal motor vehicle crashes involving speeding than the national average. In 2020, out of the 1,193 fatal car accidents, 29% of the fatalities were due to speeding.

There are cases when speeding can be elevated to a crime of aggravated speeding. Upon facing an aggravated speeding accusation, you may seek legal help from our reckless driving lawyers at the Hirsch Law Group. We have immense experience in representing clients facing speeding tickets in Illinois.

What is Aggravated Speeding?

 

Aggravated speeding, also known as excessive speeding, is when a driver exceeds the posted speed limit by a significant amount. Aggravated speeding in Illinois involves driving at least 26 miles per hour over the posted speed limit on roadways or highways. For example, if the posted speed limit is 70 miles per hour, driving at 96 miles per hour or above would be considered aggravated speeding.

 

Illinois Speeding Laws

 

Traffic laws, such as speed limits and their corresponding penalties, change often. Therefore, staying up to date with the latest laws surrounding speed limits may be a good idea.

Unless another speed limit is established, the maximum speed limit prescribed in Illinois is as follows:

  • 70 miles per hour on interstates outside of urban areas

  • 65 miles per hour on rural interstates

  • 55 miles per hour on interstates near or in major cities

  • 30 miles per hour in urban areas

Aggravated Speeding Conviction

You can be charged with a fine-only petty offense upon speeding 1-25 miles per hour over the speed limit. Aggravated speeding, on the other hand, is the act of speeding 26 miles per hour or more over the prescribed speed limit.

In Illinois, aggravated speeding is a crime charged as a misdemeanor offense. Aggravated speeding may also be referred to as:

  • Excessive speeding

  • Misdemeanor speeding

  • Criminal speeding

The aggravated speeding laws were changed in 2011 to make punishments more severe.

  • Speeding 26-34 Miles Per Hour Over the Limit: Under Illinois law, 625 ILCS 5/11-601.5 (a), speeding 26 mph or more over the legal speed limit is charged as a Class B misdemeanor.

  • Speeding 35 Miles Per Hour Over the Limit: Under Illinois law, 625 ILCS 5/11-601.5 (b), speeding 35 mph or more over the posted limit is a Class A misdemeanor. Drivers driving under the influence of alcohol may also be charged with a Class A misdemeanor.

Is Aggravated Speeding a Felony in Illinois?

 

No. The most severe type of speeding offense is a Class A misdemeanor. Illinois doesn’t categorize speeding as a felony crime. However, other traffic infractions, such as fleeing and evading or hit-and-run, can lead to felony charges, particularly if they result in catastrophic damage or death.

 

Penalties for Aggravated Speeding Offenses in Illinois

 

Criminal penalties for an aggravated speeding offense can be severe. It can affect the motorist’s driving record. Possible punishments for speeding revolve around:

  • Mandatory court costs

  • Driving privileges

  • Effects on Insurance

  • Fines

  • Traffic school

Petty Speeding: Individuals charged with a petty speeding offense face a maximum fine of up to $1,000. These are minor offenses and do not involve any jail time.

Aggravated Speeding (Class B Misdemeanor): It is punishable by up to 6 months in jail. You could also face court supervision and a fine of up to $1,500 plus court costs.

Aggravated Speeding (Class A Misdemeanor): It is punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a maximum fine of $2,500 plus court fees.

Arrest

Police officers may stop you for driving 26 miles per hour or more over the speed limit. Operating over the posted speed limit is a criminal offense; hence, you can get arrested. The law enforcement officer generally writes you an aggravated speeding citation and may take your driver’s license as a bond.

If arrested, you will be released after being processed at the police station and paying a bond.

Court Supervision

Under the speeding laws, effective January 2016, a driver may be eligible for court supervision if the driver has never been convicted or received court supervision in the past.

Court supervision is a sentence that exempts a criminal conviction from appearing on a driver’s public criminal record. Drivers need to complete the supervision successfully without committing any further traffic offenses. It may also come with additional requirements, such as participating in community service and traffic safety classes.

Illinois law prohibits court supervision for aggravated speeding in:

  • Highway construction zone

  • School zone

Offenses in Special Zones

Speeding in a school zone incurs a minimum fine of $150 plus fees and court costs. A subsequent offense carries a mandatory fine of $300. This criminal offense is ineligible for court supervision.

Criminal speeding in a construction zone attracts a minimum fine of $250 for the first transgression and $750 for the second offense.

 

Points System and License Suspension in Illinois

 

The Illinois Secretary of State employs a distinctive point system for traffic infractions. It determines the length of your driving license suspension by adding the points attached to your driving record due to the traffic violations. The following list demonstrates the actual points assigned to different kinds of speeding violations:

  • Speeding 1-10 MPH over the limit-5 points

  • Speeding 11-14 MPH over the limit-15 points

  • Speeding 15-25 MPH over the limit-20 points

  • Speeding 26-34 MPH over the limit-50 points

  • Speeding 35+ MPH over the limit-50 points

The higher the cumulative score, the longer the license suspension period.

  • 15-44 points- two-month license suspension

  • 45-74 points- three-month license suspension

  • 75-89 points- six-month license suspension

  • 90-99 points- nine-month license suspension

  • 100-109 points- twelve-month license suspension

If you are facing a license suspension or have accumulated too many points on your driving record, it is essential to consult an experienced attorney. An attorney can help you fight against the charges and work towards getting your driving privileges reinstated.

Defenses to Aggravated Speeding Charges in Illinois

 

In aggravated speeding cases, a few defenses may help clear your name or reduce the severity of your penalties. Some defenses that our reckless driving attorneys can explore on your behalf include but are not limited to:

  • Radar Malfunction: A malfunctioning radar gun could result in an inaccurate reading of your speed, leading to false charges against you.

  • Calibration Issues: Illinois law enforcement officers must calibrate their radar guns before using them. If the calibration process is not followed correctly, it can affect the accuracy of the readings and potentially invalidate speeding charges.

  • Lack of Probable Cause: In order for an officer to pull you over for speeding, they must have probable cause. If the officer did not have a valid reason to stop you, it may be possible to argue that the evidence against you is inadmissible.

  • Faulty speedometer: A malfunctioning or inaccurate speedometer can also lead to incorrect charges of aggravated speeding. In such cases, it may be possible to argue that you were not intentionally breaking the law and did not realize your speed.

If you have been charged with an aggravated speeding offense in Illinois, it is crucial to seek the help of an experienced attorney who understands the complexities of misdemeanor speeding offenses. An experienced aggravated speeding lawyer can investigate your case, gather evidence, and build a strong defense on your behalf.

Contact Hirsch Law Group Today!

 

Drivers facing an aggravated speeding charge may seek legal representation from experienced defense attorneys. These attorneys can contest the charges, negotiate for reduced penalties or possibly get the case dismissed.

Persons charged with violation of speeding tickets can seek legal representation from experienced attorneys from the Hirsch Law Group. Our traffic attorneys are well-versed in the current speeding laws, and we are familiar with the local courthouses.

We can help challenge the charges leveled against you to minimize potential consequences. We can also attempt to reduce the severity of your sentence if you are facing an aggravated speeding conviction.

Contact us to schedule a free consultation for your case. Alternatively, you can chat online with our aggravated speeding lawyers to discuss your case.