Tag Archives: DUI attorney Georgia

What You Need to Know About Child Endangerment Charges

While some may believe that driving under the influence (DUI) is not a serious crime, more Georgians go to jail for DUI charges than any other crime. In many cases, you can face jail time, pay hefty fines, and log lengthy community service and driving school hours. The harsh reality is that a DUI conviction can dramatically change your life without an experienced DUI attorney like Mickey Roberts who can effectively handle a DUI. It may be hard to imagine much worse than the consequences of a DUI in itself. However, when you add a child endangerment charge on top of a DUI, the punishment undoubtedly increases.

under 21 dui in georgiaAny person charged with DUI while transporting a child under 14 can also be charged with a separate charge of “DUI Child Endangerment.” According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 20% of children under 14 who were killed in car crashed in 2014 were killed in alcohol-impaired crashes. Of the 239 children from this group, 52% were passengers in vehicles with drivers who had a BAC of .08 or higher.

In some states, child endangerment constitutes child abuse. Statistics show that impaired drivers are less likely to use proper safety restraints for their children. According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, sober drivers in fatal crashes properly restrain their minor passengers an average of 30.5% of the time, while only 18% of impaired drivers do.

Child Endangerment is actually a separate crime than DUI. The endangerment charge cannot be “merged” into the DUI. It cannot be dismissed just because you plead guilty to the DUI. Additionally, child endangerment is considered a separate DUI offense by the Department of Driver’s Services. Therefore, if you are convicted of DUI while transporting two children under 14, you would automatically be declared a Habitual Violator because you would have three DUI convictions.

While 3 DUI convictions would carry a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $5000 fine, a 4th DUI arrest would be considered a felony, with a possible sentence of one to three years in prison and a $5000 fine.

Regardless of whether your DUI is considered a felony or a misdemeanor, it is important to keep in mind that a drunk driving child endangerment conviction will remain on your criminal record permanently. Consequently, anyone who performs a background check will be enabled to see your conviction of driving under the influence and endangering the life of a child.

Because a flawed criminal record can limit your suitability and acceptance for employment, housing, and educational opportunities in the future, it is important to hire a DUI lawyer like Mickey Roberts who also is knowledgeable in getting arrest records restricted from public view.  If you are arrested for DUI or other traffic violations, contact Mr. GaDUI today. Also be sure to follow Mickey on FacebookTwitter, and Google+ for more traffic law updates and news.

Full Disclosure? Not for Georgia Breath Tests

Many of our government officials love the term “full disclosure” these days. Another word they like to use is “transparency”. Yet, the Georgia  Supreme Court doesn’t believe in transparency or full disclosure when it comes to breath tests. Take the recent case of Padidham v. State, decided May 7, 2012.

Let me set the scene. In Georgia, when you are arrested for DUI, the officer reads you the Implied Consent Warning (ICW), where he basically informs you that “Georgia law requires you to submit to a test of blood, breath, urine or other bodily substance to determine if you are under the influence of alcohol, but you can refuse to take such test(s). The refusal can be used against you in court, and that if you do take the test(s), you are entitled to additional independent tests of your choosing.”

Logic would tell us that it would help to know the results of the “State” test BEFORE deciding whether to get an independent test or not. For instance, if the State breath test showed a blood alcohol content of .08, .09, or something close to the limit, you might want to ask for a blood test or another type of test.

It would be very easy for the police to let you know your results immediately after submitting to a breath test as the machine prints out copies of the results immediately after you blow into the machine. However in Padidham, our Georgia Supreme Court holds that ALL an officer needs to do is inform you of your right to an independent test. The police do NOT need to tell you your actual test results. Once again this brings to mind the saying, “good enough for government work.”

To learn more about DUI and traffic violation defense, read our blog and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

Radar Speed Detection Reinstituted in Gwinnett as Traffic Fatalities Jump

Have you recently noticed more police out in Gwinnett County using radar guns to catch speeders? In January 2011, only one year after the state of Georgia instituted the super speeder law, the option for Gwinnett County police and many city police in Gwinnett to use laser and radar speed detection was revoked due to an unresolved conflict between the county and city governments.

Although Georgia State Patrol could still use radar and laser detection to track drivers’ speed and Gwinnett police were able to catch speeders by pacing drivers, this revocation surely affected the number of speeding citations issued. According to an article in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Gwinnett County police alone issued 29,000 speeding citations in 2010, and three-fourths of these citations were determined through the help of laser and radar gun detection.

In February 2012, the conflict was finally resolved and radar guns were returned to Gwinnett police. The police influenced by the dispute reported they operated just fine without the radars, but were definitely glad to have them back. They believe drivers are more likely to slow down if they know police are on the roads clocking their speed. With recent car accidents earlier this month resulting in three traffic fatalities over the span of five days in Gwinnett, you can probably expect to see even more police on the road.

On Friday, April 6th, a box truck crashed into the rear of a Nissan Altima sending both vehicles into a pickup truck and a minivan on I-985 S under Buford Drive. The driver and passenger of the Nissan died on impact. The other individuals involved suffered minor injuries. Police determined speed and alcohol were not factors in this accident, but the box truck driver was charged with two counts of second degree vehicular homicide. Second degree vehicular homicide is a misdemeanor resulting in a maximum sentence of 12 months, but first degree vehicular homicide is a felony and can result in 3 to 15 years in prison and license suspension.

The other traffic fatality in Gwinnett occurred April 10th at the intersection of Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road and Sugarloaf Parkway when a driver turned left in front of another driver as the stop light turned from green to yellow. The driver who was struck on the right side of his vehicle died at the scene. This incident is still under investigation to determine right of way and if speed was a factor, but driving while under the influence of alcohol did not seem to be a factor.

A leading Atlanta DUI defense lawyer, Mickey Roberts has seen many lives take an unfortunate turn due to drunk driving and vehicular homicide charges. He urges driver’s to drive carefully. Whether you drive carefully to avoid a speeding ticket or to prevent harm to yourself and other drivers, it’s important to be cautious as one bad decision can result in harsh consequences. If you have been arrested for DUI or other traffic violations, contact MrGaDUI today. Be sure to visit his website to learn more about driver’s rights, and connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ if you haven’t already.

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The above information is intended to help educate members of the Georgia motoring public as to their rights under the law and to assist presumptively innocent citizens in properly asserting those rights. Information within this site should not be misconstrued as legal advice.
DUI attorney Georgia