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updated: 1/22/2012 4:40 PM

Elgin man blows DUI probation, goes to prison

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A man who kept drinking despite a ban as part of his DUI probation has been sent to prison.

Kane County Judge David Akemann recently sentenced John J. Kohlbeck, 43, of the 500 block of East Chicago Street, Elgin, to four years in prison after he violated his felony DUI probation several times, drank nine days in a row, and at one point had a blood alcohol content of more than five times the legal threshold.

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Kohlbeck can have his sentence halved for good behavior and he gets credit for five months in jail. The judge also recommended that Kohlbeck get substance abuse treatment.

Hampshire Police arrested Kohlbeck Dec. 2, 2008 for driving in the wrong lane into oncoming traffic. He refused field sobriety and breath tests, but was unable to stand because he was so drunk, authorities said.

According to court records, Kohlbeck was charged with felony DUI because it was at least his third offense. The felony carried a prison term of three to seven years, but probation was an option.

In December 2009, Kohlbeck was sentenced to 30 months probation during which he was banned from drinking, along with six months in jail and six months with an alcohol monitoring anklet after his release. He also was fined $3,085, according to court records.

A year later, Kohlbeck got another six months in jail after he told a judge he removed the monitoring device from his ankle, authorities said.

On Sept. 15, 2011, Kohlbeck violated probation again when arrested on charges of misdemeanor domestic battery in McHenry County, but Kohlbeck remained out of jail and on the alcohol monitoring device while awaiting sentencing.

On Dec. 30, 2011, Akemann jailed Kohlbeck after authorities learned the anklet recorded alcohol in his system numerous times, at one point for nine straight days during which time Kohlbeck's blood-alcohol concentration topped .430, authorities said.

Kohlbeck was not accused of driving drunk again, but the legal threshold for drunken driving in Illinois is a BAC of .08.

Kane County Assistant State's Attorney Danielle Bechtold prosecuted the case. A message left with Robert Smith, who was Kohlbeck's defense attorney for the 2008 DUI, was not immediately returned.

Learn about police: Two area departments have upcoming Citizen Police Academies.

The Aurora Citizens Police Academy runs from 6 to 9 p.m. on 10 consecutive Thursdays beginning Feb. 16. The academy is free and taught by Aurora police officers. Applications are due by Feb. 3, and can be downloaded at aurora-il.org, or obtained by calling (630) 256-5182.

St. Charles police also are accepting applications for a free academy that begins March 6 (with an unspecified end date) and meets from 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays at the department. Call (630) 377-4435 or email Officer Bill Tynan at btynan@stcharlesil.gov.

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