Bad Arrests

There is a lot of discussion about what makes a “bad arrest” after a person has been arrested for DUI.  There are literally thousands of mistakes a police officer can make during a DUI stop that can lead to dismissal of the charges.

These mistakes include: stopping a vehicle when the officer does not have reasonable articulable suspicion of crime being committed, failing to gather enough evidence to support the charge and other technical errors that would lead a court to believe that the DUI charged could never be proven.

There are other “mistakes” the police officer could make that will NEVER cause the DUI to be dismissed, for example:  making any mistake that can be characterized as a scrivener’s error.  Those mistakes include getting the color of the car wrong, putting the wrong date on the ticket, etc.  These mistakes never result in a DUI case getting dismissed because the court will allow an officer to correct these mistakes if those case were brought to trial.

How can you tell the difference between the mistakes?  Sometimes it is easy, and sometimes it is not so easy.  If the officer puts the wrong return court date on a ticket, it is very likely the court will allow the ticket to be amended to reflect the correct date.  However, if the officer puts the wrong date on the Notice of Summary Suspension, it is likely that the Secretary of State will not confirm the suspension and kick the ticket back to the arresting department.  This may result in the suspension being thrown out if the driver has filed a motion to defeat the suspension.  Of course if the driver has not filed the motion the suspension will probably not be thrown out.

Telling which mistakes may lead to positive results is something that you should have an attorney look at after an arrest for DUI.

Ray Flavin, Law Dude, is an attorney who practices law in McHenry County, Illinois.  His law offices are located across the street from the courthouse in Woodstock, IL.  You may reach him directly at (815)669-6969



Calling Bullshit on the Ken Kratz Youtube Commercials.

The world of attorney advertising is probably one you don’t want to look too closely at. It’s also one that many attorneys don’t want you to look too closely at. Especially when it comes to “former” prosecutors working as criminal defense attorneys.

Those guys are my favorites. Prancing around like proud peacocks and showing off their pretty feathers because they were prosecutors. They know “both sides” of the coin, you know.  They’re obviously better at keeping you out of jail because they spent the last 20 years trying to put you in jail, right?

Having just finished Making a Murderer I moseyed on over to check out the firm page of everybody’s favorite prosecutor-turned-defense-attorney, Ken Kratz.  I was curious what old Kenny was up to these days. I’d heard he quit his prosecutor job. So sad.

Before you think I went looking for Ken on some sort of witch hunt because I’m dying to pile-it-on my boy Kentastic, just stop yourself right there. I don’t know Ken Kratz. I only know him from that Netflix series. I may be shallow, but I’m not so shallow as to think it was a fair portrayal of the man.  He’s probably an awesome guy.

Actually, he’s probably not. I’m just not positive.

I mean, I’m pretty sure I don’t like him. I’m not completely sure, though. Not yet, anyway. I’d have to know more about him to know for sure. So, if you’re looking for somebody to join your internet shame mob, I’m not meaning to shame the man. Right now. Today.

I am meaning to shame his youtube commercials, though.

It seems that my guy Ken, former prosecutor-Jedi-turned-defender-of-the-meek has himself a happy client! So happy, in fact, that his Grandmother helped film a “testimonial” for Kratz.  Thankfully Grandma looked like an actress, dressed like an actress, spoke like an actress, and used facial and hand gestures like an actress. Thankfully she didn’t have any of that un-natural nervousness or awkwardness when the bright lights and professional grade video equipment just happened to be in Kenny-boy’s office the day she walked in.

Thankfully Grandma kept it all together when it was time to come through for K-Kratz.

I know. You’re skeptical.  Who am I to say that this isn’t actually Ken’s client’s grandmother.  Hell, for all you know it might actually be Ken’s Grandma herself, right?  Who the hell am I to say?

I’m not much, but I am a guy who’s seen a lot of client’s grandmothers. I’m a guy who’s sat across a table from plenty of family members of guys who didn’t go to prison.  I’m a guy who knows the difference between a legitimately scared grandmother, and Ken Kratz’s acting friend.

I’m also a guy who proved that the only thing between a lawyer and a “client” in a Navy hat saying whatever-the-hell you want takes exactly $5, a short script, and a 24 hour wait.

Uh… I mean I’m a guy who had a client we’ll call “Bob.” He got a DUI and should of been put to death, obviously.  He was frightened. His family was frightened.  Bob feared the worst and, dammit, probably should have received exactly what he feared. NOBODY COULD HELP BOB!

Bob came to me, though. And because I know former prosecutors who taught me the secret-former-prosecutor-jedi-handshake, I KEPT BOB OUT OF PRISON AND HE IS A FREE MAN FOREVER!

I don’t want to brag or anything, but all it took was a little bit of my fucking charm, my superman undies, and a pinch of that law-magic my former prosecutor friends taught me.

Bob, how you doin’ these days?

I’m not saying mi hombre Kenilicious paid $5 to have some lady put on a Navy hat and pretend he represented her son. I’m saying that he paid her a lot more, and she didn’t even wear the Navy hat.  That seems Bogus.

Excessive Bail Blog names Edward Snowden the Man of the Year, (Again)

Excessive Bail Blog names Edward Snowden the Man of the Year, (Again).

First of all we would like to congratulate Edward Snowden for being chosen for the Excessive Bail’s Man of the Year Award.  Also, we would like to take this moment to affirm that President Barack Obama is STILL banned from this website. We will think about reconsidering that once baseball frees Pete Rose.  Actually, probably not.

This should puzzle some of you out there.  Here at Excessive Bail we are more liberal than literally anyone you know, so it doesn’t follow that the President would be banned for those of you who can bear to watch Fox News. He is nonetheless.

The reason we have once again chosen Edward Snowden for Man of the Year is because of his total awesomeness.  It is apparent to the editorial board here that he did something that you all would only talk about doing- totally disrespect your boss when he is full of shit.  Snowden didn’t like that his “boss” reads company emails hoping to find something in there that says something bad.  Knowing that it would cost him his job and his life in American, he did it anyway.  Knowing that he would always be in danger for the rest of his life, yuuup, he just did what he did LIKE A BOSS.

Don’t blame Eddy Snow for your lack of spine.  It’s not his fault you’re jealous.  He exposed the government for illegal activities (and some activities that were not illegal but were the kind of stuff that you don’t exactly get re-elected for doing).  Some of the things he divulged changed the way we relate to other nations (not listening to their phone calls)- for the better.

Some have suggested that he subjected other Americans to danger by them being named in the disclosures (spies, etc.) and that the disclosures caused things like the attack in Paris to happen.  People who say that either are trying to protect their phoney-baloney jobs, or are totally cold making this shit up, and should be immediately called out when they start talking such nonsense.

So, it is with a little pride, and a lot of protection from the U.S. Constitution that we hereby declare 2015 Excessive Bail’s Man of the Year to be Edward Snowden. Again.

Hell, he’s already the front runner for 2016’s man of the year as well.

Editors, Excessive Bail

DUI arrests dropping because police tired of going to trial

Being “tough on crime” ™ leaves more drunk drivers on the road.

I think I just guessed why DUIs are dropping like the stock market in 2006. More and more often we hear that the legislature and your local prosecutor crow about how they are “tough on crime” ™.  And I think the reason that DUI arrests have dropped is that officers were forced to go to trial on many of their weak DUIs because of the “tough on crime” ™ stance of the prosecutors, so they just started writing fewer DUIs.

McHenry County DUI Arrests 2004:   1699

McHenry County DUI Arrests 2005:   1671

McHenry County DUI Arrests 2006:   1756

McHenry County DUI Arrests 2007:   1794

McHenry County DUI Arrests 2008:   1638

McHenry County DUI Arrests 2009:   1408

McHenry County DUI Arrests 2012:     1198

McHenry County DUI Arrests 2014:     924


If you looked at the graph it looks like being “tough on crime” is literally the most effective tool the prosecutor has in his arsenal to increase the amount of crime.

It appears that after the current State’s Attorney took office for the second time, some new policy had the effect of taking fewer drunk drivers off of the road.  And that policy was being “tough on crime” ™.   So as I have written about again and again, saying you’ll be tough on crime and knowing how to do it are two different things.

I don’t think that there is any other good answer to the question of why DUI arrests are down.  Some have suggested that tougher penalties have caused drivers to carefully consider whether to drink and drive.  That’s funny, the law has been getting incrementally tougher on DUI for over 30 years and their hasn’t been any corresponding drop.  The numbers literally were going up every year until they reached 1800 one year 2007 and they have fallen since.

It’s funny but we got a new “tough on crime” prosecutor who told all of the local towns that there would be no deals on DUIs while he was State’s Attorney.  He started in December 1, 2004.   And he started his “tough on crime” policy in his second term:  right around the exact time that DUI arrests plummeted.

Law Dude, Ray Flavin, is a DUI attorney who represents drivers that have been charged with DUI in McHenry County Illinois. His law offices are located across the street from the McHenry County Courthouse in Woodstock, IL. You can reach him by phone at (815)669-6699


Concealed Carry, this is why we can’t have nice things

Lady opens fire at people fleeing a misdemeanor (theft), gets charged with reckless discharge

and then proclaims:

“I tried to help,” she said. “And I learned my lesson that I will never help anybody again.”

This is so ridiculous and hilarious at the same time that it is hard to separate the two.  We all know should know that you can’t use deadly force unless someone is about to use deadly force against you or another.  I mean that is so simple a fourth grader could understand it, right?  And this lady taking shots at people fleeing the crime of shoplifting doesn’t even come close to a good reason to fire shots toward someone.

You should also know (if you have lived on the planet for over 8 years) that you can’t defend property with deadly force, right?  I mean I am not giving you any new information here.  So when your next door neighbor tells you how his shed got broken into last night, but he wants to wait outside with a gun to see if the thieves come back because he wants to shoot them, you can confidently tell him, ummm no, don’t do that, that would be murder.

It seems to me that we are having far to many of these what I would call, don’t cross the street against the light or somebody will run over you discussions.  When people decide that they want to “help” Home Depot by shooting at shoplifters, we should probably take their gun away.  Further we should probably hire someone to walk next to them so they don’t wander into the street, because they are by definition not the brightest intellectual bulbs in the socket.  It seems to me that we should have caught this misunderstood lady FAR before we gave her permission to carry a gun in her purse.

Just Sayin,

Law Dude, Ray Flavin, is a DUI attorney who represents drivers that have been charged with DUI in McHenry County Illinois. His law offices are located across the street from the McHenry County Courthouse in Woodstock, IL. You can reach him by phone at (815)669-6699


Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer in the State of Illinois 2016

Ray Flavin is a Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer

There it was again.  In the junk mail.  A letter declaring that I was a Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer in the State of Illinois for 2016.  I had received the same letter in 2015, and 2014.

The dues to be a “Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer” were $200.  I wondered how many of my peers had sent the phoney baloney certification mill $200?  Why do I think it’s phoney baloney?  Because I think that it is something that no one cares about except for the person who is nominated.  Day in day out, I will be trying a criminal case, the judge is there, the prosecutor is too, the police officer is there and my client is there.  There also is 12 strangers who were supposedly picked by me (although you know that is not true–I had a slight say in who wasn’t there, but these guys and gals were just a random selection from the voter registry of my county).  But do you know who wasn’t there?  Someone to rate my performance, someone to compare it to other attorneys.  As a matter of fact 95 times out of 100 no one else is there, so how would you know who is a Top 100 Criminal Defense Attorney.

The answer is you wouldn’t.

One of the candidates for state’s attorney claimed that our county was somehow the hardest place for a criminal defense attorney to practice because the last state’s attorney was soooo “tough on crime” ™.  I explained why it’s the easiest:

I have to disagree. If a criminal defense attorney wanted to collect a trial fee, an unreasonable state’s attorney who set every case to trial would be like an ATM. You could win more trials, because they won’t dismiss the weak ones, so you look like a hero. You would look like a great attorney because your record would be amazing, and you could make much more money than you ever could with a reasonable state’s attorney. Why would a criminal defense attorney want insider deals, no amendments or dismissals of weak cases. THIS MAKES NO SENSE. The easiest place to work for a criminal defense attorney would be in a county with such an attorney.

As it turns out, it’s hard to explain to people who don’t understand the system, how it works.

Law Dude, Ray Flavin, is a DUI attorney who represents drivers that have been charged with DUI in McHenry County Illinois. His law offices are located across the street from the McHenry County Courthouse in Woodstock, IL. You can reach him by phone at (815)669-6699