Oglethorpe County DUI Lawyer – Oglethorpe County DUI Attorney
Lexington GA DUI Lawyer – Lexington GA DUI Attorney
The Law Office of Richard Lawson is an exclusive DUI defense firm. Our founder, Richard Lawson, is a former Georgia DUI prosecutor with over 25 years' experience in DUI law. He is the top-rated DUI lawyer in Georgia as rated by Avvo. Please see our views and contact us for a free case evaluation.
If you have been arrested for DUI in Oglethorpe County, you should act right away to save your Georgia driver's license. To save your license, you or your Oglethorpe County DUI Lawyer must file a request for an Administrative License Suspension (ALS) hearing or an ignition interlock request within 30 days of your arrest. If this requirement is not met, your driver's license will automatically be suspended.
If you have been accused of refusing the State's chemical test of your breath, blood, or urine, your driver's license will automatically be suspended for one full year with no opportunity for restricted permit or early reinstatement.
If you are over the age of 21, it is legal to operate a motor vehicle after consuming alcoholic beverages in all 50 of the United States. Regardless of this fact, DUI is still one of the most politically controversial criminal offenses; subjected to relentless lobbying by special interest groups such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Just what is drunk driving? Contrary to popular belief, the term “drunk driving” is a bit of a misnomer, because a person does not actually have to be drunk to be arrested and charged for driving under the influence of alcohol. Georgia law says that a driver only has to lack the ability to safely operate a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol to be guilty of DUI this terminology is very ambiguous and is subjective to the opinions of police officers, judges, and jurors. In Georgia, as it is in most states, a driver is per se DUI if they have blood a alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or more. While DUI is not the most heinous crime on the Georgia books, is a very aggressively prosecuted crime and carries mandatory minimum sentences for convictions or guilty pleas. It is imperative that you understand all the possible penalties and consequences potentially against you in resolving your Oglethorpe DUI case. That is why choosing a skilled Oglethorpe County DUI Lawyer is so important.
Your Life Is Not Over
Despite the grim and depressing picture painted above, the likelihood of you avoiding a DUI conviction is pretty good. The most beneficial thing you can do to avoid a DUI conviction is to get legal advice from a qualified Oglethorpe County DUI Attorney as soon as possible. Just like any criminal case, fast action and early intervention helps preserve evidence that could be used on your behalf and potentially mitigate some of the efforts the prosecutor is using to gather evidence to convict you.
Administrative License Suspensions
As mentioned above with the thirty-day warning, if you refuse to take the chemical test of your breath, blood, or urine, your license will be suspended for one year. Unfortunately, there is no hardship license that can be obtained for the administrative license suspension. If you need your driver's license to go to work, school, or receive medical treatment, losing your driving privileges can be a nightmare. An Oglethorpe County DUI Lawyer can help you save your license if you call as soon as possible after your DUI arrest.
The arraignment is your first appearance in court. This is when the court advises the defendant of the nature of the charges against them and enters a plea to that charge of “guilty” or “not guilty.” Unless you had a previous life as a criminal, prior court issues, or violent activity during your arrest, you will more than likely post bail to ensure that you will return to court. If you do not have an Oglethorpe County DUI Attorney representing you at your arraignment, do not plead guilty.
A pretrial conference is usually the next court date after the arraignment, and it is the first opportunity for your Oglethorpe County DUI Lawyer to meet with the prosecution to discuss your case. Typically, by the end of the pretrial conference, both parties have reviewed the police reports and have identified other material available that is related to your case. The Court encourages both parties to decide whether a trial is necessary or if there is a possible resolution. If the case is not resolved at pre-trial conference hearing, a motion hearing date or trial date is scheduled at that time.
In a DUI case there are many pre-trial motions that can be used that may dispose of the charges against you. Motions to suppress evidence are often used in an attempt to exclude any damaging evidence against you that may have been improperly collected by law enforcement. Motions to dismiss the case may be filed in particular instances for a dismissal of your charges based on a technical violation.
DUI trials are usually held in the same place the pretrial dates were held. Choosing to go to trial is a decision to be taken seriously. Your Oglethorpe County DUI Attorney will handle the details of the trial, but you are not left out altogether. First of all, do you want to testify? Defendants in criminal proceedings have the right to testify or use their right to remain silent. The State of Georgia has the burden of proof against you so many defendants choose not to testify and therefore, offer no additional evidence at trial. Most defendants sit quietly while their Oglethorpe DUI Lawyer raises doubt and argues there is insufficient evidence to convict you beyond a reasonable doubt.
If your DUI case goes to trial and unfortunately, there is a guilty verdict, sentencing will immediately follow. After the jury gives their verdict, have been thanked and excused, the judge will move to the sentencing phase. The State request a particular disposition and offer reasons why that disposition is recommended. Afterward, your Oglethorpe DUI Attorney makes a recommendation on your behalf and provides personal and factual arguments for that recommendation. The presiding judge will enter the sentence at that time.
Oglethorpe County Court System
If you are arrested for misdemeanor DUI anywhere in Oglethorpe County, your case will go to Oglethorpe County Probate Court. The Honorable Beverly Nation is the Oglethorpe County Probate Judge. The address of Oglethorpe County Probate Court is 109 East Boggs Street, Lexington, GA 30648. Office hours are Monday through Thursday, 7:30 AM to 5 PM, and Friday, 7:30 AM to noon and 1 PM to 5 PM. For more information, please call (706) 743-5350.
Map to Oglethorpe County Probate Court
Oglethorpe County Superior Court
If you have been arrested for felony DUI, or you would like a jury trial, your case will go to Oglethorpe County Superior Court. Oglethorpe County Superior Court is part of the Northern Judicial Circuit a long with Elbert, Franklin, and Hart Counties. Kelli Paradise Smith is the Chief Court Clerk. Court is held at 111 West Main Street, Lexington, GA 30648. Call (706) 743-5731 for more information. There are three judges who hear felony cases:
Thomas L Hodges, Chief Judge
Judge Jeffery S Malcom
Judge R Chris Phelps
The district attorney is the chief prosecuting officer for Superior Court. The Dist. Atty. serving Oglethorpe County is D Parks White. His contact information is:
D Parks White
Oglethorpe County Superior Court
Post Office Box 515
Hartwell, GA 30643
Map to Oglethorpe County Superior Court
Your Success is Our Business
If you have been arrested for DUI in Oglethorpe County and need skilled legal advice, look no further than the Oglethorpe County DUI Lawyers with the Law Office of Richard Lawson. Our most important goal is to get our clients the best outcome possible. Our DUI Lawyers in Oglethorpe County will make it their mission to protect your valuable time, money and good name. Call now for a free consultation with one of our Oglethorpe County DUI Attorneys.
Oglethorpe County DUI Resources