This month’s case is an example of how sometimes our criminal justice system can work. My client, who takes prescription drugs for anxiety and depression, was arrested for DUI prescription drugs. He was found by a passing motorist, slumped over at the wheel of his car on the side of the road. The engine was off. No one had witnessed him driving the car.
When the police arrived on the scene and were able to wake him, he admitted that he was driving home, had an anxiety attack and took a prescription drug. He decided to pull over when he began to feel the affects of the drug and call his family for help; he subsequently passed out.
In Georgia, a person commits a DUI when the driver was in physical control of a moving vehicle while under the influence of alcohol/drugs to the extent his driving ability was impaired.
Just because someone does not see a person driving erratically does not mean the person cannot be convicted of DUI. There are tons of cases in Georgia where a person is involved in a one car accident, or when a person is found in a parking lot, and where the person is subsequently convicted of DUI. The key to conviction is for the State to prove, either by direct evidence or by circumstantial evidence, that the person charged was under the influence while operating a moving vehicle.
In this case, the system worked. First, the client did the right thing by pulling over, stopping the engine, and calling help. Second, after examining the evidence and pointing out Georgia case law to the State prosecutor, officer, and judge, the arresting officer agreed that, in retrospect, he did not have any evidence that my client was impaired at the time of driving. Third, the court had the guts to make the right decision and put aside any public pressure to “convict” a DUI defendant at all costs.
Because he did the right thing, the client’s DUI was dismissed. To learn more about how to win a DUI case in Georgia or about the cases Mickey Roberts has won visit his website and continue to read his blog.