In Georgia, an alleged drunk driver will typically face a misdemeanor DUI charge if the driver is arrested after a routine traffic stop or checkpoint. However, if the individual is involved in a serious car accident or has any prior DUI convictions on his or her record, the alleged drunk driver could face felony charges and time in prison.
Last week, a 56-year-old woman who was convicted of DUI and other charges was order to serve three years in prison and 17 years on probation by a Clarke County Superior Court judge. Although the woman did not cause a serious car accident in which others were injured, she was convicted of other felony charges because of the potential harm she could have caused when she was drunk.
On June 2, 2010, the woman was eating and drinking alcohol at a restaurant at the Atlanta Highway shopping mall. However, her dining experience was disrupted when a man allegedly harassed her by making inappropriate comments. The women spoke to employees at the restaurant, asking them to address the situation by calling police. However, the employees did not call police.
According to an assistant district attorney, the woman became upset when police were not called, so she went to her car and got a handgun. When she saw the man leave the restaurant, she shot at him as he was attempting to drive out of the shopping center parking lot. She then got into her own vehicle and drove away. The woman was later pulled over in Oconee County and arrested for DUI and other charges after the shooting incident.
No one was injured, but prosecutors filed felony charges and requested that the woman serve time in prison because she could have injured someone inside the mall or in the parking lot when she fired the shots at the man after drinking at the restaurant.
Source: Athens Banner-Herald, “Woman gets 3 years for shooting at Atlanta Highway restaurant,” Joe Johnson, April 6, 2012