Drunk driving arrests are usually made after law enforcement officers conduct traffic stops or respond to motor vehicle accidents in Georgia.
An officer might suspect someone of driving drunk and conduct a traffic stop after noticing a vehicle with its headlights turned off in the middle of the night or after noticing a vehicle speeding and swerving in and out of traffic lanes.
But can an officer arrest someone for DUI when the individual isn’t even driving or behind the wheel of a vehicle? Last week, a man was arrested in Athens after he was suspected of driving drunk. However, the man was arrested while he was eating inside a restaurant.
According to an Athens-Clarke County Police report, the 49-year-old man was arrested on Nov. 29. Prior to the arrest, police received a report from someone who claimed the man was driving his vehicle in the area and was not staying in his lane of traffic as he should have been, indicating that the driver may have been intoxicated. The person who reported the suspicious driver also told police that the driver was heading toward the Waffle House restaurant on Oconee Street.
The officer who received the report spotted the driver’s vehicle at the restaurant’s parking lot. The driver was not inside his vehicle, though. When the officer arrived at the restaurant, he found the alleged drunk driver already sitting at a booth and eating with a friend.
The man was asked whether he had been drinking prior to driving to the restaurant. The man allegedly told the officer that he had a couple of beers while he was at a local bar. However, the man allegedly changed his story while speaking with the officer and the officer arrested the man. The man has since been charged with DUI.
Source: AthensPatch, “Intoxicated driver arrested while at Waffle House in Athens, Ga.,” Tiffany Stevens, Dec. 2, 2012
- Our firm provides counsel to those who have been arrested for allegedly driving drunk. To learn more about our firm and practice, please visit our Athens, Georgia, defending DUI charges page.