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Georgia DUI Defense

Defending You Against Drunk Driving Charges

Many people who are arrested on DUI charges think they are out of luck. However, if you have been charged with drunk driving in Georgia, I urge you to be patient and to stay focused on the end result. DUI can be a difficult charge for the state to prove, and is, in reality, much more complex than most people realize.

Given the consequences of a DUI conviction and the complexities involved, no one should plead guilty without consulting a defense lawyer. As a former prosecutor who now defends individuals charged with crimes such as DUI and minor in possession, I have the experience to probe and challenge the state's charges against you. I offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case.

A Strong Defense is Always Possible

There are several detailed and strict limitations on the way the government investigates and prosecutes a DUI case. Even if the police say you "failed" the field sobriety tests, or had an unlawful alcohol concentration as shown by a breathalyzer or blood alcohol test, it may be possible to call into question, or even suppress, those results.

The complexities of DUI defense are such that trying to handle a DUI case without counsel will undoubtedly be something you will later regret. Consulting with an attorney is the only effective way to explore all the possible defenses, but. here are some of the issues an experienced defense attorney can often attack:

  • Did the police have a legal reason to pull you over? If not, all evidence gathered after the stop can be suppressed.
  • Were you stopped at a sobriety checkpoint or "roadblock"? Roadblock cases are often ripe with pretrial defenses and the prospect of reasonable doubt.
  • Did the police officer handle the field sobriety test properly? There are federal guidelines about how these tests must be conducted to be considered "scientifically valid", and if there was noncompliance, not only are the results meaningless, but the arresting officer will have to admit as much on the witness stand.
  • Was the breathalyzer machine in error? If the machine was not properly maintained, breathalyzer test results can be suppressed. The mechanics and operational details of the "Intoxilyzer" provide fertile ground for defense.
  • If you refused to take a breath test, what words did you use? The police may have misinterpreted your statements, your "refusal" may be ambiguous or you may have said something that triggered certain obligations for the arresting officer with which he did not comply. refusal cases carry extremely harsh license consequences, and yet are more often than not defensible in one form or another.

If you can identify police mistakes or potential problems with any testing procedure in your case, it is not unusual for DUI charges to be dismissed or reduced to the level of a traffic ticket. Such mistakes or problems are more common than you might expect, and an all out fight is often your best choice: Do not assume you must plead guilty to a DUI!

Protect your driver's license: If the police took your driver's license and gave you a suspension notice, you should contact an attorney immediately. You have only 10 days to appeal the officer's request to suspend your driver's license, and if you miss that deadline, your license WILL be suspended.

Free Attorney Consultation

If you have been charged with driving under the influence (DUI), contact me, lawyer Matt Karzen, for a free consultation. My law office is in downtown Athens, Georgia. Call toll free at 866-487-0881.