An Illinois and Wisconsin licensed Criminal Defense Attorney answers: What are the consequences and options if my son or daughter lives in Illinois but got a ticket or citation for underage alcohol possession or consumption in Twin Lakes, Wisconsin from the Kenosha County Sheriff at the Country Thunder Concert or in the Country Thunder Campground camping area in 2017?

 

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OVERVIEW OF COUNTRY THUNDER FESTIVAL AND COMMON CITATIONS AND OFFENSES

Once a year the Country Thunder music festival takes place in Kenosha County Wisconsin, specifically in the Village of Twin Lakes. This years festival is scheduled to take place July 20-23, 2017. If past history is any indication of the future this festival will likely result in a massive number of citations and arrests in Wisconsin for Illinois and other out of state residents and Wisconsin residents alike. The most common citations are for underage consumption or possession of alcohol and usually occur within the festival camping and campground areas. The Kenosha County Sheriffs and other law enforcement agents are dispatched to these campgrounds often on ATV or other smaller vehicles or may also be on foot patrol. In the past I have represented young people charged with citations and violations for obstructing justice, underage consumption of alcohol, underage possession of alcohol, possession of cannabis, drug paraphernalia, battery, disorderly conduct, criminal trespass and other violations related to Country Thunder and the surrounding festival camping areas.

 

POTENTIAL CONSEQUENCES FOR UNDERAGE CONSUMPTION OR POSSESSION OF ALCOHOL CITATIONS FOR ILLINOIS RESIDENTS

The immediate potential consequence to an Illinois resident for an underage possession or consumption of alcohol violation is a six month suspension of Illinois driving privileges. The Illinois Secretary of State provides in relevant part:

  • Driver’s License Suspension for Alcohol Consumption — A person under the age of 21 who is found guilty or granted court supervision for a violation of state law or local ordinance relating to illegal consumption, possession, purchase or receipt of alcohol, regardless of whether a vehicle was involved will face a loss of driving privileges, in addition to any fine imposed. Court supervision for any of these offenses will result in a 3 month suspension of driving privileges; a first conviction results in a 6 month suspension of driving privileges; a second conviction results in a 12 month suspension of driving privileges and a third or subsequent conviction will result in a revocation of driving privileges.

It should be noted that the State of Wisconsin does not recognize the Illinois concept of Court Supervision so if an Illinois resident pays or ignores a citation for underage possession or consumption of alcohol they will suffer a conviction that could result in a suspension of driving privileges as outlined above. An underage consumption of possession of alcohol conviction will be visible to a parent’s insurance company and may result in increased family premiums, An additional significant repercussion of a conviction for underage possession or consumption of alcohol is the record of that offense as a forfeiture, criminal charge or ordinance violation. Often these tickets are not criminal in nature, but may still affect college applications or future job prospects for a young person.

 

WHAT ARE THE OPTIONS FOR AN ILLINOIS RESIDENT TO AVOID THE POTENTIAL NEGATIVE CONSEQUENCES OF A CONVICTION FOR UNDERAGE POSSESSION OR CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOL?

The best option is to avoid any conviction for the offense at all. Theses offenses are often handled very differently between State and Municipal Prosecutors. Attorney Richard Albanese has assisted many young clients is securing deferred prosecution agreements that result in amended lesser charges or even dismissal depending on the jurisdiction that issued the citation. Often the Illinois resident charged with Underage Consumption or Possession of Alcohol does not even need to appear in court and can often meet certain conditions to resolve the matter during college breaks if attending school out of State with my representation in the matter. If you live in Illinois or Wisconsin and got a Wisconsin ticket for underage drinking or possession or any other violation please contact the Richard Albanese Law Office immediately as some of these violations have court dates for as early as a week or a few weeks after the event. Do not pay fines that will result in a permanent conviction on your record as there are other options available to you. Even if you or your son or daughter who received and underage possession or consumption of alcohol citation mistakenly paid the ticket prior to the initial court date it still may not be too late to reopen the case. Contact the Richard Albanese Law Office immediately for a free consultation at 312-882-1973 or by email atRichardAlbaneseLawOffice@gmail.com or on the web at http://www.criminalandtrafficdefenseattorney.com.

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Will Wisconsin speeding ticket points or traffic convictions transfer, carry over or be reported to my Illinois Driver’s License?

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Will the Illinois Secretary of State find out about my Wisconsin Speeding Ticket or other Traffic Offense?

When Illinois drivers get speeding or traffic tickets in Wisconsin there are often many questions that arise without definitive answers. Often well meaning police officers issuing the tickets in Wisconsin may erroneously minimize the effect of the Wisconsin points system to an Illinois driver causing a Illinois driver to simply pay a Wisconsin speeding or other traffic ticket in the mail only to find out later that although Wisconsin points did not carry over to their Illinois license, but an out of state conviction did. All Wisconsin citations indicate a description of the offense and the assigned points. For the Illinois driver the number of points designated for a given offense is not relevant as the points do not transfer over to the Illinois Secretary of State as points per se, but there are still more serious consequences for the Illinois driver in the form of a report of conviction to the Illinois Secretary of State. Courts in the State of Wisconsin report speeding and other traffic convictions to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation as well as the National Registry. Those convictions are then reported to the corresponding Illinois driver’s license with the Illinois Secretary of State. The convictions can result in suspension of driving privileges and increased insurance premiums as they appear on the Illinois driving records reviewed by insurance companies.

How the Richard Albanese Law Office can help protect your Illinois driving record from Wisconsin Speeding or Traffic Convictions:

Although Court Supervision is not an option in Wisconsin there is still hope for relief for Illinois Drivers. Generally speaking, with proper representation many Wisconsin State and Municipal prosecutors may be willing to amend a speeding charge to a non moving violation when appropriate. The end result is that an Illinois Driver can pay a modified ticket in Wisconsin that will have no impact on their Illinois License. Once you have retained Richard Albanese you will most often not have to appear in court to contest your ticket, which saves not only a long trip back to Wisconsin from Illinois, but also saves time and the expense of having to take a day off work to appear on a citation. Every Wisconsin jurisdiction is different in how they handle traffic and speeding offenses. Please contact the Richard Albanese Law Office today at 312-882-1973 or at http://www.criminalandtrafficdefenseattorney.com or at RichardAlbaneseLawOffice@gmail.com for a free consultation on your speeding ticket in Kenosha, Racine, Dane County, Lake Geneva, and any other city, town or village in the State of Wisconsin.

The most common offense an Illinois driver is cited for in Wisconsin is speeding.  A chart of speeding and other traffic related offenses can be found below:

List of frequently assessed point violations

Points Regular convictions
6 Attempting to elude an officer
6 Failure to perform duty after accident
3 Operating while revoked or suspended
6 Operating under the influence of intoxicant or drugs
6 Reckless driving or racing
6 Speeding 20 mph or more over limit
6 Violation of occupational license
4 Deviating from traffic lane
4 Driving on wrong side of highway or street
4 Failure to yield right of way
4 Failure to yield to emergency vehicle
4 Imprudent driving, too fast for conditions, failure to have vehicle under control
4 Inattentive driving
4 Failure by operator to stop for school bus when red lights are flashing
4 Speeding 11 through 19 mph over limit
4 Unnecessary acceleration
3 Arterial or traffic control violation
3 Driving wrong way on one way street
3 Failure to dim lights
3 Failure to give proper signal
3 Following too closely
3 Illegal passing
3 Improper brakes or lights
3 Operating with expired license or without any license
3 Operating with multiple licenses
3 Prohibited or illegal turn
3 Speeding 1 through 10 mph over limit
3 Violation of restriction
2 Obstructing traffic
2 Parking on highway in traffic lane, defective speedometer
0 License not in person’s immediate possession
0 No registration plate light