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Athens GA DUI Law Blog

The link between underage drinking, sex and assault

When parents talk to their kids about drinking, their conversations often revolve around the dangers of driving under the influence, binge drinking and the illegality of underage drinking. There are parents who believe that as long as they don't allow kids (theirs or others) to drive home intoxicated, they're being responsible.

Some parents don't have a problem with their kids having a few drinks at a party as long as they don't get behind the wheel afterwards. They figure that all kids do it, and they want to be the cool, accepting parents. Other parents are simply in denial that their teens are drinking, especially if they're young. However, studies show that kids often have their first drink at 13.

All alcohol related charges must be handled carefully

Drunk driving charges are serious matters for anyone. We recently discussed the seriousness of underage drinking in this state, but this is only one of the possible cases in which alcohol consumption can have an impact on people.

One thing that is important to remember is that if you are going to party with friends, you need to make sure you do so responsibly. If you are under the legal drinking age, you should avoid alcohol because the charges that can come with underage drinking can have serious consequences.

Study: Many teens are abstaining from alcohol

Parents with kids in high school and college will likely be happy to hear about a recently-released study that found that many teens are not indulging in alcohol consumption. Many teens have said that they're more focused on school and eventually a good career. They say that drinking could reroute them from their goals. As one 14-year-old put it, "If I focus on alcohol, I'm not going to focus on my career."

Their parents, who grew up some thirty years ago when the dangers of alcohol weren't as widely-known or discussed, may find it hard to believe that their kids aren't surrounded by friends and classmates who are drinking. However, it's important to understand that they may have greater access to other mind-altering substances, like marijuana.

What happens when you drive drunk while underage in Georgia?

A report released by the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility suggests that nearly nine million individuals between the ages of 12 and 20 drink alcohol in the United States. One report presented in front of Congress suggests that at least 23.6 percent of Georgians in that same age bracket admit to consuming alcohol within any one month.

Although its illegal for anyone to operate a vehicle under the influence of alcohol in Georgia, if an individual younger than 21 does it, they risk much stricter penalties than similarly situated adults.

What are the consequences for using a fake ID?

Although arriving at the legal drinking age of 21 might seem like light years away, you don't want to let your sense of urgency to be able to legally purchase alcohol cloud your ability to exercise sound judgment. Just like drinking and driving, using a fake ID can have longstanding consequences for your life, especially when as it relates to putting your future livelihood at risk.

The person you offer your information to that's supposed to create that fake ID for you is doing something illegal him or herself. Therefore, if you provide your real information to another individual to make a fake ID for you, then you risk having your personal data ending up being sold off to someone else who may then impersonate you. This identity theft can, in turn, result in your image and credit both being put at risk.

Georgia DUI arrests are decreasing. Is that good news?

The number of arrests in Georgia for DUI has decreased by almost half since 2008 -- almost 50,000 according to police departments throughout the state. DUI arrests by Georgia state troopers have been dropping as well. To what can that trend be attributed?

A big factor is the availability of ride-sharing services. Uber and/or Lyft are not available to people in all counties throughout the state. Both services have apps that can be easily downloaded to your phone. Tens of thousands of people throughout the state have done that. While the apps are particularly popular with young people, Georgia residents of all ages are using these services when they know that they'll be going out for the evening and having a few drinks or if they realize that they aren't in any condition to drive home.

How much do DUI penalties jump for a second offense?

You already got one DUI. It happened six months ago, after you'd been out at the bar with your friends. You had a glass of water and thought you were safe to drive, but you blew just over the legal limit when you were pulled over.

Now you're wondering what happens if you get a second DUI. How much do the penalties jump?

Singer arrested in Georgia on DUI, marijuana charges

Singer Aaron Carter may be known best for his song "I Want Candy" by some or as the younger brother of Backstreet Boy Nick Carter by others. Carter was arrested on July 15 in Georgia on suspicion of DUI as well as drug possession. His girlfriend, who was with him, was also taken into custody.

The two were arrested by sheriff's deputies at an AutoZone store in Habersham County. According to an officer with the sheriff's department, a motorist called 911 because Carter was allegedly "driving all over the road and driving into the median" before entering the store's parking lot. The couple was arrested inside the store.

Underage drivers should be taught about the dangers of DUIs

There are many college and high school students who live in or visit Athens, Georgia (Clarke County). Some of them, unfortunately, engage in underage drinking. When they drink and drive, those students may find themselves facing DUI charges and in need of legal defense.

When underage students are wrapped up in the excitement of social situations, they often accept alcohol because everyone around them is drinking. They may not, however, consider the ramifications of drinking for the drive home that they'll need to make later. This results in an extremely dangerous situation that can result in those underage student drivers, their passengers, people in other vehicles and pedestrians getting injured or killed in crashes.

Parents aren't powerless to prevent underage drinking

Underage drinking spikes in the summer as kids have more free time and less supervision. It's also the season when teens are most likely to engage in underage drinking for the first time -- up to twice as many as in other months.

Of course, drunk driving is one of the primary dangers of underage drinking. Almost double the number of teens are killed in crashes between May and August than in other months.