|Sleeping in vehicles may result in possible DUI|
|Written by Kasha Henricks, Daily Vidette Senior Staff|
|Tuesday, 03 April 2012 12:20|
When thinking of the possibilities of receiving a DUI, most people assume that you have to actually be driving. However, that is not the case. Simply being in your car with the keys can warrant a DUI.
Aaron Woodruff, ISU Chief of Police, explained scenarios where patrons would need to be aware of the possibility of receiving a DUI.
“If you have control of the vehicle, which means that you have keys in the vehicle, then you could get a DUI.
“It is up to the discretion of the actual officers, but the legality of it is you can receive a DUI,” Woodruff said.
Cara Rabe-Hemp, criminal justice associate professor, further explained the law involving distributing DUIs.
“In the state of Illinois driving under the influence is defined as any person shall not drive or be in actual physical control of any vehicle under the influence.
The part that matters is the actual physical control. The part where as long as you are in control of the vehicle, but not driving it, you can still be under the influence and you can still be given a DUI,” Rabe-Hemp said.
“As long as they have actual physical control of the vehicle and they are under the influence they can be given a DUI,” she added.
Woodruff explained if you have music playing from your car, yet you are on the lawn or private property, that would not necessarily warrant an arrest.
It has more to do with having control of the vehicle and believing you have the intent to drive the vehicle, Woodruff said.
ISUPD comes across students or visitors sleeping in their cars occasionally.
“What we are trying to do is check their wellbeing. We make sure they are okay, make sure they’re not driving, or intending to drive. If we can find another way, if they have a friend they couldn’t get a hold of, get checked into a residence hall, or something like that, we will do our best to find another location for them to stay as opposed to sleeping in the car,” Woodruff explained.
“They could wake up and start driving the vehicle before they are sober. As far as safety goes, it’s probably best to not be sleeping in a parking lot,” he said.
Woodruff explained it is not illegal to sleep in your car, it is simply not the best option.
“If the officer feels like you are doing the right thing, they are typically not going to write you a DUI for sleeping in your car.
“The best advice I would give to somebody in that situation is give your keys to somebody else if you are going to sleep in your car so that you don’t have to worry about being put in that situation,” Woodruff said.
However, a car is not the only motorized vehicle that can result in a DUI. If a person is in control of a golf cart, garden tractor, four-wheeler, or any other motorized device, people are at risk of receiving a DUI.