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Athens GA DUI Law Blog

Are you a candidate for medical amnesty?

Have you ever been in a situation where you hesitated to seek help for someone who had over-imbibed alcohol or ingested too many drugs and was in danger of overdosing? You wanted to get them immediate medical assistance, but didn't want to wind up arrested yourself.

Such is frequently the case with underage drinking and drug use by those of any age. Nobody wants to just stand by and watch a friend die needlessly, and under Georgia law, they can avoid prosecution by invoking medical amnesty.

Don't get caught as a 'SuperSpeeder'

Georgia has a "SuperSpeeder Law" on its books that fines drivers extra if they exceed 75 mph on two-lane highways or drive faster than 85 mph on highways or other roads.

The additional $200 fees are tacked onto whatever other fees are charged by the courts having jurisdiction over the area where the speeding took place. Those who neglect to pay the "SuperSpeeder" fees get another $50 tacked onto the already high fine and get their driver's license suspended.

Arrested for DUI over the holidays?

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal has a strong message for drivers over the holidays — "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over." Recognizing that this period is fraught with additional risk of accidents and injuries (or even deaths), police throughout the state are out in force over this extended holiday weekend as part of a national safety campaign.

Last year, over the holidays from Christmas Eve at 8 p.m. to 12 midnight on Dec. 28, 14 individuals lost their lives in wrecks during that 102-hour period. Statistics for the state of Georgia in the year 2014 showed that 165 people died in 8,931 accidents involving alcohol and another 5,250 were injured.

Busted for open container? Call us!

People often erroneously believe that as long as they are not the driver of the vehicle, they are free to consume alcoholic beverages while riding in an automobile. However, doing so is a violation of Georgia's open container law.

As defined by state law, an "open alcoholic beverage container" is a can, bottle or other vessel containing any alcoholic beverage with either the seal broken or missing some of the contents.Not only are passengers not allowed to drink or possess open alcoholic beverages while riding in vehicles, it is possible to be charged with an open container violation while walking on the sidewalk with an open beer, or in some circumstances, even while hanging out in the common areas of apartment complexes.

Got beer? University students launch beer delivery service

It's said that necessity is the mother of invention, and for two University of Georgia students, that adage certainly rings true. The two friends were hanging out when they got the idea to launch an alcohol delivery service.

As a result of their brainstorming session, the two men launched the company they call "Beer Run." The concept is simple. A customer logs onto the website and makes their selection from a variety of adult beverages. A driver then goes and makes the purchase and delivers the goods within an hour.

Drug/DUI court: Could it be in your future?

If your night out on the town culminated in an arrest for driving under the influence of either alcohol or drugs, you may soon be introduced to the Athens-Clarke County DUI/Drug Court.

Drug Court is a team-oriented concept that involves judges, law enforcement, the Solicitor-General, the public defender's office, probation officers, a court coordinator and substance abuse treatment professionals. Team members cooperate and support participants who attempt to address and combat their substance abuse problems that landed them in trouble.

Underage drinking and driving carries high costs

Driving is a privilege and not a right, and the state of Georgia holds the keys to that right.

Younger drivers from 15 to 20 have a statistically higher risk of dying in a car accident, and collisions are the number one cause of death for those in that age group. In one calendar year, 136 drivers died and another 193 others suffered fatal injuries from wrecks in Georgia that involved drivers under 21.

Athens-Clarke County turns up the H.E.A.T. on drivers

Impaired drivers and other careless motorists may run afoul of the law in and around Athens, as the Athens-Clarke County police are taking part in the H.E.A.T. program.

The acronym stands for Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic, and three additional units have been dedicated to making streets safer by stepping up traffic enforcement and educating motorists. Through a grant issued by the Governor's Office of Highway Safety, these additional police units are staffed by officers whose salaries also stem from the grant.

What are whiskey plates?

Commonly known as a "whiskey plate" and sometimes a "party plate," these are license plates that are given out to people who have been convicted of a DUI. The plates are mainly used in Ohio and Minnesota, where they're a different color than the standard plates that other drivers use, making them easily visible to other motorists and police officers.

In Georgia, these plates may also be used. While they do show that a person has gotten a DUI in the past, the important difference is that they're the same color as the standard plates, so they don't stand out as much at a glance.

What happens if you're convicted of DUI in Georgia?

If you get arrested for impaired driving in Georgia, a conviction for even a first offense can potentially land you behind bars for a year. However, that is not all that you have to worry about.

Fines for a first offense range from $300 to $1,000, and there is a $210 fee to reinstate your driver's license. Additional repercussions can include having your license suspended for as long as a year and having to do a minimum mandatory of 40 community service hours.