Dallas, Ga. - According to reports out of Paulding County, an accident caused by a wrong-way driver led to five serious injuries and one fatality.
No charges have been filed yet, however, the crash is still under investigation. As a Georgia DUI Lawyer, I will focus on one of the possible charges - serious injury by vehicle.
Serious Injury by Vehicle in Georgia
The Georgia Code defines Serious Injury by Vehicle in Georgia in O.C.G.A. §40-6-394 as:
Whoever, without malice, shall cause bodily harm to another by depriving him of a member of his body, by rendering a member of his body useless, by seriously disfiguring his body or a member thereof, or by causing organic brain damage which renders the body or any member thereof useless through the violation of Code Section 40-6-390 or 40-6-391 shall be guilty of the crime of serious injury by vehicle. A person convicted under this Code section shall be guilty of a felony and shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than one year nor more than 15 years.
This law does not define what constitutes a serious injury, so in these situations, we have to look to other sources within the Georgia Code. Other Georgia laws define it as a “fractured bone, severe burns, disfigurement, dismemberment, partial or total loss of sight or hearing, or loss of consciousness.” To be considered serious, the injury does not need to be permanent. Instead, a serious, temporary injury is sufficient and only needs to impair or injure a person's appearance.
In the past, injuries such as loss of vision in one eye, blurry vision, a two-inch scar on the forehead, broken ribs, and severe bruising have qualified as “serious.” Whether an injury is serious is a question of fact to be determined by the jury.
Serious injury by vehicle is classified as a felony offense. The penalty if convicted of serious injury by vehicle can include high fines and up to fifteen years in prison.
This charge is often accompanied by charges of DUI in Georgia. If you or a loved one has been arrested for driving under the influence or any other serious traffic violation or crime, contact our offices today. Our lawyers specialize in DUI Defense and can help you now.