Butts County DUI Lawyer-Butts County DUI Attorney
A DUI CAN HAPPEN TO ANYONE
Imagine you were invited to dinner at the home of a friend who lives only a few miles or even blocks from you. While you are having dinner, your host offers you a drink, and you take a few sips, just to be polite. Before you know it, you've had a glass of wine with dinner. You dare not drink any more than that because you know you still have to drive home. After you say your thanks and goodbyes, you head home around 10 PM.
On your way home, you see the flashing lights of a police car behind you. You are asked to stop, and the officer starts shouting questions at you. You become confused as you are ordered out of your car. The officer can smell the alcohol on your breath and asks you to perform field sobriety tests and blow into a Breathalyzer. Considering your answer that you had one glass of wine with dinner, you are arrested for DUI and taken to jail.
DUI checkpoints and roadblocks are annoying, aggravating, and can sometimes violate human rights. While checkpoints have been shown to be somewhat effective, one study conducted found that only 38% of drivers with a BAC of 0.08 or above were detected during a routine sobriety checkpoint. That study does not reflect their actual purpose of keeping impaired drivers off the road.
EFFECTIVE DUI REPRESENTATION
However, if you have been charged with DUI in Butts County, Georgia, you need a skilled, experienced attorney by your side. Not hiring a lawyer can cost you everything. The worst mistake you can make is trying to take care of it yourself. Our founder, Richard Lawson, began his career as a DUI prosecutor. He makes sure the attorneys in his office know the best DUI defenses, and they will work diligently to save your driving privileges and protect your rights. Check out his reviews on Avvo and call right away for your best defense.
There are a lot of legal issues that are important when looking at DUI cases. Georgia's legal system is like a maze, and you should have legal representation who knows the correct route to take and why it should be considered. To use the alternative can make for a very hard lesson to learn.
At Lawson and Berry, our Butts County DUI Attorneys assist those that have been arrested for DUI and DUI related offenses in Butts County and throughout Georgia.
USE YOUR RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT
If you are pulled over for suspicion of DUI, the police may ask you to submit to roadside testing. These tests are typically field sobriety tests and a roadside breath test. With field sobriety testing, you could be made to do things such as walking a straight line, standing on one foot, following a light or pen with your eyes. The portable breath test or Breathalyzer will require you to blow through a tube into a small machine that will test your breath for alcohol. You are not obligated to take either test. The police officer may then arrest you, but by refusing roadside testing, you make it more difficult for law enforcement to justify your arrest later on to a judge. You have the right to refuse and say, “No.” Know your rights.
If you were arrested, there are some things that will change. You will then be asked to take another test of your blood, breath, or urine to check your blood alcohol content (BAC). If you refuse this test, you will lose your license for a year.
No matter what, do not answer questions about whether or not you have been drinking. The police often ask people if they have been drinking, and some people will admit to having a drink or two. Remember the police do not have to prove that you were driving drunk to get you convicted of DUI; they only need to show that you were affected by any alcohol you consumed. Admitting to drinking any alcohol is admitting that you are impaired. Remember, you do not have to answer those questions. Contact a DUI Lawyer in Butts County as soon as you are released from jail.
As soon as you are able, contact Lawson and Berry; the top-rated Butts County DUI Attorneys.
If you have been charged with DUI in Butts County, GA, contact us now for a free no-hassle, no-obligation consultation. Our firm has over 25 years of experience in DUI representation. DUI is a serious charge and should not be left to a general practitioner law firm that takes just any legal case.
Butts County, Georgia 30-Day Warning:
If you were arrested for DUI in Butts County, GA, you only have thirty days to file a letter to request an Administrative License Suspension (ALS) Hearing or an ignition interlock device to prevent a license suspension. The 30-day letter lets you keep your license until there is an ALS Hearing for your case. If the hearing or interlock device is not requested, your license will be suspended. If you refused testing of your breath, blood, or urine, your license would be suspended for 12 months without any limited permit to drive. A DUI Attorney in Butts County can file this request for you to save your driving privilege.
THE DUI PROCESS IN BUTTS COUNTY, GEORGIA
DUI cases typically begin with an arrest from a municipal police officer, a Georgia State Patrol officer, or an officer from Butts County Sheriff's Office. After you are arrested, you will want to bond out of jail as soon as you can. You can get out of jail using a cash bond, a bonding company, or a property lien.
When you are finally out of jail, you will need to start thinking about your defense. The Butts County DUI Lawyers in our office know how to create DUI defenses that will bring the best outcome. A DUI arrest does not make someone automatically guilty. Finding potential defenses and alternatives can be crucial at the beginning of the court process.
CHALLENGING THE ARREST
We can challenge your arrest for DUI in three stages, the first of which is the initial stop. You cannot legally be stopped by law enforcement if you are not breaking the law or driving in an erratic manner. There may even be video evidence that shows how you were driving. We can obtain that video and analyze it to determine if the allegations of the officer are consistent with the video evidence. If your Butts County DUI Lawyer can convince the judge that law enforcement had no reason to pull you over, your case could be dismissed.
The second stage that we can challenge is your arrest. The officer must have probable cause to believe that you have committed a crime before they can arrest you. Probable cause is determined by everything that led up to your arrest: your driving, the officer's observation of you, and how you performed on field sobriety tests. If your Butts County DUI Attorney can show that the officer did not have probable cause to arrest you, your case could be dismissed.
CHALLENGING THE FIELD SOBRIETY TEST
There are some important things to know about field sobriety tests. Police often give suspects a “chance” to prove they are innocent by field sobriety tests. The real purpose of these tests is to get more evidence against you to use at trial. There are three types of standardized tests: the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus test; the Walk-and-Turn, and the One-Leg Stand. Studies have been done that show these tests are the most accurate; when done properly. Law enforcement has to follow the correct procedures when administering these tests for them to be effective. Our Butts County DUI Attorneys know how to give these tests just like law enforcement. They know exactly what police should do as well as what they are looking for as clues of impairment. If we can show that field sobriety tests were done improperly, this can make the officer's testimony unreliable, and make it harder for the state to prove their case.
CHALLENGING THE CHEMICAL TEST
Lastly, your guilt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. That is the highest standard of legal proof. That is where the court will look at the testing of your breath, blood, or urine that was done to determine your blood alcohol content (BAC). Just because the test might have shown you were above the “legal limit,” does not make you automatically guilty. The judge is required to look at (and consider) all of the evidence against you.
Your Butts County DUI Lawyer will more than likely counter your chemical test result with other evidence that will raise doubt as to whether or not you were impaired.
THE COURT PROCESS IN BUTTS COUNTY, GEORGIA:
Jackson Georgia Municipal Court
The location of your arrest determines which court will have jurisdiction of your case. If your misdemeanor arrest occurred within the city limits of the cities of Jackson, Flovilla, or Jenkinsburg, Georgia, your case would be heard in Jackson Municipal Court. The Municipal Court judge is the Honorable E. Byron Smith, and the Clerk of Court is Brandy Berry. Jackson Municipal Court is held the 4th Wednesday of each month unless otherwise posted. The address 132 S Mulberry Street, Jackson, Georgia 30233. For more information, call (770) 775-8030. A Jackson Georgia DUI Lawyer from Lawson and Berry is waiting to evaluate your case today.
Butts County Probate Court
If your misdemeanor DUI arrest occurred outside the city limits of Flovilla, Jackson, Jenkinsburg, or any unincorporated area in Butts County, your case would be heard in Butts County Probate Court. The Honorable Elizabeth Biles is the probate judge. She may be contacted at (770) 775-8204. Butts County Probate Court is located at 25 Third Street, Suite 7, Jackson, Georgia 30233.
If you would like a jury trial, your case will be bound over to Butts County Superior Court.
Butts County Superior Court
Butts County Superior Court handles all felony DUI cases. The Clerk of Court is Rhonda Smith, and she can be reached from 8 AM until 5 PM Monday through Friday at (770) 775-8215. Court is held at 25 Third Street, Jackson, Georgia 30233.
Butts County Superior Court judges are part of the Towaliga Judicial District that includes Butts, Lamar, and Monroe Counties. There are two judges who preside over felony cases:
Honorable Thomas H. Wilson
Chief Superior Court Judge
Towaliga Judicial Circuit
Monroe County Courthouse, 2nd Floor
1 Courthouse Square
Forsyth, Georgia 31029
Honorable William A. Fears
Towaliga Judicial Circuit
Butts County Courthouse
P O Box 531
Jackson, Georgia 30233
The Chief Prosecuting Officer for Superior Court is the District Attorney's Office. The District Attorney for the Towaliga Judicial Circuit is Richard Milam. His contact information is:
Richard Milam, District Attorney
Towaliga Judicial Circuit
625 West Third Street, Suite 8
Jackson, Georgia 30233
TOP-RATED DUI DEFENSE
If you have been arrested and charged with DUI in Butts County, contact the top-rated DUI Defense firm of Lawson and Berry. Our skilled Butts County DUI Attorneys and DUI Lawyers in Jackson are always available to take your call, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Even holidays!
Butts County DUI Resources
Butts County Sheriff's Department
City of Jackson Police Department
Administrative Office of the Courts
Wikipedia of Butts County Georgia