Good Samaritans Catch Juan Diaz on Possible 18th DUI - The Chicago DUI Law Blog

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Good Samaritans Catch Juan Diaz on Possible 18th DUI

The details of Juan Diaz's history are sketchy, not the least because the man himself is sketchy. Ten days ago, Diaz was headed westbound on I-90 at 10:45 pm. A pair of people in a car that was near Diaz's van noticed him swerving lane to lane and contacted the police. They then followed him until he stopped in Elgin, where he was arrested by waiting officers. The witnesses say that at one point, he turned with such speed that he almost flipped his van, reports the Chicago Sun-Times.

When the police questioned Diaz, he gave them two false names and birth dates. Fortunately, these cops weren't easily fooled and managed to track down his priors in two criminal databases. The results are astonishing: either 13 or 14 DUI convictions in Illinois since 1989, two DUI convictions in Texas, a warrant for outstanding aggravated DUI charges, and at least four convictions for driving on a revoked license.

Fourteen plus two plus one pending plus present arrest... that's eighteen!

It also turns out that he had a second license, under the name Juan M. Diaz-DeLeon. That was also revoked.

While we'd never recommend following a dangerous criminal or attempting to detain one via a citizen's arrest, these two individuals' phone call and pursuit may have taken the most egregious DUI offender in recent memory off of the road for most of his remaining life.

Diaz is facing a charge of aggravated DUI after more than six prior DUI convictions, which is a class X felony. This carries 6 to 30 years in prison, plus fines of up to $25,000. Because he is far beyond a sixth DUI, and is wanted for an outstanding charge, we're not expecting much mercy from the court if he is convicted. Considering that he is currently 59-years-old, if he survives a sentence of 10 or 15 years in prison, he won't have much time left to drive drunk. Plus, he'll probably be really sober.

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