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Clingenpeel v. Edgar

OPINION FILED MAY 20, 1985.

WILLIAM H. CLINGENPEEL, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE,

v.

JIM EDGAR, SECRETARY OF STATE, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



Appeal from the Circuit Court of Sangamon County; the Hon. Simon L. Friedman, Judge, presiding.

JUSTICE WEBBER DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

The respondent Secretary of State of Illinois (Secretary) appeals from an order of the circuit court of Sangamon County, sitting in administrative review, reversing an order of the Secretary which denied the reinstatement of the petitioner's driver's license. The court's order further directed that he be issued a restricted driver's license.

An administrative hearing on the question of reinstatement was held in Springfield on December 7, 1982, before one of the Secretary's hearing officers. The petitioner appeared pro se and offered little or no objection to the proceedings. An abstract of his driving record was offered and received into evidence upon his agreement that it was "a reasonably accurate record" of his driving offenses. That record disclosed the following:

(a) October 8, 1976, arrested for running a stop sign; convicted October 25, 1976.

(b) November 27, 1977, arrested for illegal transportation of alcohol; convicted December 20, 1977.

(c) April 30, 1978, arrested for speeding; convicted May 15, 1978.

(d) May 5, 1979, arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol and leaving the scene of a property damage accident; convicted of the former April 11, 1980; of the latter on May 15, 1979.

(e) September 15, 1979, arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol and reckless driving; convicted of both on December 4, 1979. In connection with the same offenses petitioner's license was suspended for three months beginning November 18, 1979, for refusal to take a breathalyzer test.

(f) An order of revocation of petitioner's license and driving privileges was entered effective March 13, 1980, and again on January 14, 1981. No restoration had occurred.

Further evidence at the administrative hearing consisted of an alcohol evaluation form report submitted by a counselor at the Iroquois Mental Health Center at Watseka. The report indicated that petitioner had completed the "DWI program" at the Center and was not in need of treatment. The form also indicated that a written evaluation was attached. However, in the record in this court, inexplicably, the written evaluation is that of some other person and made by a counselor at a center in Moline.

As against the finding of the form report from Watseka, there appeared the testimony of the petitioner himself. He stated that he still drank on weekends, 8 to 12 beers on each occasion; further, that on these occasions he drank to a state of intoxication.

The hearing officer denied petitioner's request for reinstatement of driving privileges and made the following conclusions of law:

"1. Petitioner has multiple convictions for DUI on his driving record, which indicates a possible drinking problem.

2. Petitioner offered testimony concerning his alcohol consumption which conflicted with information he provided the alcohol counselor. He testified that he drinks as much as 10 beers or more on any drinking occasion than he reported to the counselor. This suggests minimizing by Petitioner during the evaluation process, which ...


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