On Monday, June 24, 2019, Georgia law enforcement were called to a two-vehicle crash on the southbound lanes of Thompson Bridge Road, Gainesville, Georgia. The call came just before 6:30 p.m.
Rianne Rider, age 32, of Gainesville, GA, stands accused of driving under the influence (DUI). She allegedly was driving her 2016 Cadillac Escalade northbound on the street but crossed into southbound traffic. This caused her to hit a 2003 Ford Expedition head-on.
The driver of the Ford Expedition was Gabriel Orozco Suarez, age 53. Also in the vehicle with him was his passenger, Lasandro Hernandez, age 37. Both received serious but non-life threatening injuries. A second passenger in the Expedition, Cesear Martinez, suffered only minor injuries, and all occupants of the Expedition were taken to Northeast Georgia Medical Center.
Rider was originally arrested and charged with DUI and failure to maintain lane. Since then, she now faces two felony counts of serious injury by vehicle and one misdemeanor charge of obstructing an officer. She allegedly tried to escape from the hospital where she was being treated for her own injuries.
If you or someone you care about face charges for DUI or obstructing an officer, you need a highly trained and experienced Georgia DUI attorney to present a defense to your charges. You should not try to face this process alone.
Obstructing an Officer
A person obstructs a law enforcement under O.C.G.A. 16-10-24 when a person "knowingly and willfully obstructs or hinders" a law enforcement officer in the course of his or her official duties. This can constitute a broad variety of conduct by a person, and often comes as a natural result of a person's conduct while intoxicated.
Activity that can be considered "obstruction" includes, but is far from limited to:
- running from Georgia law enforcement
- lying to police
- attempting to destroy or hide evidence
- locking your vehicle
- refusing to follow a police officer's verbal directions
- resisting arrest
- give a false name or false documentation (i.e. fake i.d.)
- getting out of a vehicle when not asked to do so
Other kinds of conduct that interfere with an officer's ability to do his or her job can also result in a Georgia obstructing an officer charge.
Penalties for Obstruction
If you are charged with a misdemeanor form of obstruction in Georgia, you could face the following possible penalties:
- 12 months in jail
- fine of up to $1,000
- community service
- anger management classes
A person can also be charged with a felony version of obstruction, and the person could face the same penalties as a misdemeanor, but the prison sentence would now be between 1 and 5 years in prison.
Consult an Experienced Georgia DUI Attorney
A charge of obstruction alongside a DUI can derail your life. You may be stripped of your right to drive or even your freedom. Jail time and high fines can result if you do not defend your case.