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Defeating a Speeding in a Construction Zone Charge can Save you Hundreds of Dollars and Points on Your Illinois Driver's Record

In Illinois a person convicted of a Speeding in a Construction Zone charge faces a minimun fine of $375.00 as well as points on one's driving abstract.  Supervision is not allowable as a disposition for that offense.  In almost every case the motorist is caught by a specialized photo enforcement van.  The motorist does not know he has been caught until weeks later.  Many times the construction zone has already been removed from the location where the motorist was alleged to have committed the violation.  This makes it impossible to photograph the site to determine whether construction zone markers, cones, etc. were actually present.  The State typically does not offer anything but a conviction on these citations.  

However, by forcing the State to disclose photographs taken and by carefully reviewing the evidence, it is possible to obtain dismissals of the charge.  Many times the photos are of such poor quality that it is impossible to see who the driver actually is.  One portion of the statute mandates the driver to divulge the identity of the actual driver should they claim they did not drive the car at the time the infraction was alleged.  I believe this to be in direct violation of one's Fifth Amendment right against compulsory self-incrimination.  I believe most court's would agree with this claim as most judges I have discussed this matter with do not like this charge.  Another issue when reviewing the photographs is whether the construction zone is viewable in any of the three pictures sent along with the charge.  Most of the time there are no actual workers present (which is not an element) nor are many, if any, construction zone indicators viewable.  

Lack of actual service of process is another issue to pursue.  The citations are all mailed to the last known address of the motorist.  Oftentimes the citation is not received by the client.  Sometimes the license plates are registered to a corporation.  In that case it is impossible to identify the individual unless a representive from the company would come forward with the information.  

Raising these issues can result in a dismissal of the charge.  

Brian L. Polinske
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