DEKALB COUNTY DUI LAWYER
At The Law Offices of Richard S. Lawson, we understand that a DUI arrest in DeKalb County can be a frightening experience. The court appearances and license suspension put stress on your everyday life. Our DeKalb County DUI Attorneys are here to uncomplicated the criminal process and give you peace of mind during your case. With over 50 combined years of experience, we know what it takes to obtain a successful outcome in your case. We pride ourselves on being available to our clients whenever they need us, including nights, weekends, and holidays. If you or a loved one has been charged with a DUI in DeKalb County, call now for a free consultation.
DUI Charges in DeKalb County
Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious criminal offense in Georgia and has significant consequences for those convicted. In Georgia, there are two types of drunk driving offenses: DUI less safe and DUI per se. Each type requires specific elements and carries a different sentence if convicted. While DUI per se is the one that most people associate with DUI charges, DUI less safe is frequently charged. Georgia law outlines that it is illegal for any person to operate a motor vehicle while the driver has a blood alcohol content (BAC) of more than the legal limit. For drivers age 21 and older, the limit is .08. Drivers under 21 years have a much lower threshold of .02, and CDL drivers have a limit of .04.
A DUI per se charge means that a driver's BAC was above the legal limit, and therefore, the driver should be found guilty of DIU even if the prosecution is unable to show that the driver's ability to operate the vehicle was impaired. To be specific, the prosecution is only required to show that the driver's BAC was above the legal limit within three hours of being in physical control of the moving vehicle.
The other DUI charge is DUI less safe. A person can be charged with DUI less safe in DeKalb County even if their BAC was less than the legal limit. Instead of going by the limit, a person can be arrested if an officer believes that the driver is a less safe driver due to alcohol consumption. DUI less safe is a more subjective charge than DUI per se and thus is tried more often. The prosecution has the burden of proving the extent of the driver's impairment beyond a reasonable doubt. The prosecution generally relies on evidence such as the driver's behavior, an odor of alcohol, slurred speech, or other manifestations of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Our DUI Lawyers in DeKalb County have been defending those charged with DUI for decades. We understand the difference between DUI per se and DUI less safe and know how to successfully argue against either charge. Contact us today and find out how we can help with your case.
Our DeKalb County DUI Lawyers are Here to Help
Not all attorneys have the broad and comprehensive knowledge and experience that is gained through years of dealing with DUI cases. Richard Lawson has more than 25 years of dedicated DUI experience and a solid reputation of success. We have defended thousands of clients against all types of DUI charges and can craft a custom-tailored defense for your case. Whether your goal is a reduction or a dismissal of charges, we have the tools you need to accomplish your goal. Our DeKalb County DUI lawyers are intimately familiar with the ins and outs of Georgia DUI law and can protect your rights against even the most serious charges.
DUI charges can greatly vary in severity depending on the driver's history of convictions and the unique circumstance surrounding the case. No matter the specifics of your case, our DeKalb County DUI attorneys are prepared to defend you against the prosecution's claims. With state-of-the-art legal resources and in-depth knowledge of DUI case law in Georgia, our attorneys use their invaluable experience to craft a persuasive defense on your behalf. We have many former prosecutors on our team, we can anticipate the opposition's strategy and aggressively corner their approach. Our experience allows us to stay one step ahead at all times.
We handle all matters related to a drunk driving charge, from the administrative license suspension (ALS) hearing to determine the status of your drivers license to the criminal proceeding to determine penalties. We will make certain that all required documents are timely filed to protect your rights.
When you hire us to defend you on a DUI charge, we conduct an exhaustive investigation of the facts and circumstances surrounding your arrest. We will carefully examine the evidence to determine whether police had probable cause to pull you over, and whether you were adequately notified of your rights before making any statements. We will also review police reports and question any witnesses, clarifying whether field sobriety or blood alcohol tests were correctly administered. If there are irregularities, we will seek the exclusion of evidence and/or the dismissal of all charges, if appropriate. You can rest assured that our DUI Lawyers in DeKalb County will use every resource at their disposal to reach a successful outcome in your case.
Your Future is At Stake, Contact Us Today
The chances of you securing a positive outcome for your case are only as good as the team on your side. By retaining our DeKalb County DUI Lawyers, we promise to use our vast legal knowledge and passion to prove your innocence or reduce your charges. Without our help, expect to face serious penalties such as imprisonment, probation, driver's license suspension, and much more. Call now and speak with a DeKalb County DUI Attorney that can give you insightful information and resources when dealing with a DUI charge.
DeKalb County Courts
DeKalb County has multiple courts and it can be confusing as to where your case will be heard and what happens next. Your case can proceed in a DeKalb County Court if you were pulled over by a municipal court officer, a Georgia State Patrol officer, or a DeKalb County police officer. No matter where your case started, our DeKalb County DUI Lawyers are here to help. We have been defending people charged with DUI in DeKalb for decades and understand the unspoken rules that coincide with each court.
DeKalb County Municipal Courts
In most cities in DeKalb County, if you are pulled over by a municipal court officer, your case will proceed to that city's municipal court. Municipal courts are able to hear cases involving traffic offenses, city ordinance violations, and misdemeanors. Municipal courts are unable to hold jury trials, therefore, you must request to have your case transferred to DeKalb County State Court if you desire a jury trial.
DeKalb County State Court
If your arrest occurred in an unincorporated part of DeKalb County, your case will proceed to DeKalb County State Court. Additionally, if you requested a jury trial from a municipal court, your case will be heard in State Court. DeKalb County State Court is located at 556 N. McDonough Street, Decatur, GA 30030. R. Javoyne Hicks is the Court Clerk and can be reached at 404-371-2261.
DeKalb County Superior Court
DeKalb County Superior Court handles cases that include a felony offense. DUIs can be charged as a felony if it is a fourth DUI within ten years (all convictions since 2008), if serious injury or death resulted, or if this is a third habitual violator offense within five years. DeKalb County Superior Court is located at 556 N. McDonough Street, Decatur, GA 30030. Debra DeBerry is the Clerk of Superior Court and can be reached at 404-371-2635.