Is Carly Rousso being treated differently in Or perhaps a better question is: Will Rousso's apparently privileged upbringing even make a difference?
Sure, things seem to be going a little easier so far for Rousso, the 18-year-old daughter of two prominent North Shore residents. Initial reports about the death of 5-year-old Jaclyn Santos-Sacramento indicated only that a , her brothers, and her mother. There was no mention of possible alcohol or drug involvement.
And yes, it did take until Wednesday night, after a lot of complaining by a local Hispanic-community activist and the mayor of Highland Park, to have .
But will it make a difference?
According to the prosecutor's office, the charges have been in place since Monday, as they were required to obtain Rousso's blood and urine samples. They have no idea why it took so long to release the news to the press. As for the misdemeanor DUI charge, it will stay a misdemeanor until toxicology results return in a couple of weeks.
Despite the appearance of favoritism, and the apparent hush-hush coverage of the alleged DUI, the answer to the question is this: It will probably make no difference whatsoever in Rousso's cirminal prosecution.
If the toxicology results indicate that Carly Rousso was drunk, she'll almost certainly be charged with the same aggravated DUI charges that any other drunk driver would face for running down a child and her family. (Yes, it has happened before.) She'll likely face a lengthy prison sentence of up to 14 years, a license suspension, and public shame and humiliation.
So, can we please calm down with the race and privilege cards, at least for now? The prosecutor is not going to let someone walk just because her parents run some hoity-toity art center in the suburbs. And imagine the coverage the case will get if and when felony charges are brought against a privileged suburban girl gone bad.
So be patient. If Carly Rousso deserves it, she'll likely get what's coming to her. Besides, she's innocent until proven guilty.
Originally published on FindLaw’s Chicago DUI Blog at http://chicagoduilawyersblog.com/2012/09/is-carly-rousso-getting-preferential-treatment-in-dui-death.html