I posted Saturday about the charter bus accident on the way to the Masters last Thursday. Bus driver, Stephen Hoppenbrouwer, was charged with driving under the influence of drugs, failure to maintain lane, and several counts of serious injury by vehicle in Georgia.
As of right now, Hoppenbrouwer remains in jail with a bond set at $20,000. Most of the passengers have been released from Augusta hospitals, but one is currently in critical condition with unstable vital signs at Augusta University Medical Center.
According to reports, Hoppenbrouwer almost drove off the road two times before actually crashing the charter bus.
His roommate contends that Hoppenbrouwer was not under the influence. He gave a statement that he watched the bus driver cook breakfast that morning before he left.
This is yet another example about how no one should be assumed guilty just because an accident occurred or because he or she has been accused of a crime. There are two sides to every story - even in the most horrific of situations. As a Georgia DUI Lawyer, this is something I've stood by for years.
According to reports, the bus driver was driving under the influence of drugs - this is also known as DUI Drugs.
What is DUI Drugs in Georgia?
The Georgia Code outlines DUI Drugs in Georgia. According to O.C.G.A. § 40-6-391, there are three major provisions pertaining to DUI-Drugs:
- A person shall not drive while under the influence of any drug to the extent that it is less safe for the person to drive.
- A person shall not drive under the influence of a combination of substances (i.e. drugs and alcohol) to the extent that it is less safe for the person to drive.
- A person cannot be under the influence of prescription drugs, even if a drug or drugs are prescribed legally.
DUI in Georgia applies to both alcohol and drugs. However, there is no quantitative “legal limit,” as there is with an alcohol based DUI charge, that shows that a person is under the influence of drugs. Hiring an experienced a Georgia DUI Attorney is of the utmost importance so that they can apply the proper Georgia DUI Defenses.
A conviction for DUI Drugs includes the following:
- 12 months of probation,
- A minimum of 24 hours in jail,
- A fine of at least $300,
- 40 hours of community service,
- DUI school,
- And a drug/alcohol evaluation.
These punishments are just some of the penalties of a DUI Drugs conviction in Georgia. A judge can enforce a stricter penalties, and that your driver's license is at risk of being suspended in DUI-Drug cases. In some cases, people accused of DUI Drugs are also charged with possession of a controlled substance, which causes the penalty to become increasingly worse.
If you or a loved one was charged with DUI or DUI Drugs in Georgia, you are facing some serious Georgia DUI Penalties. Contact us today.