Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious offense that can result in significant legal consequences in Georgia. If you’re facing a DUI charge, it’s crucial to understand the various factors that can aggravate the situation and increase the severity of the penalties you may face.
Here are the factors that can aggravate a DUI charge in Georgia:
- High Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) Level
In Georgia, the legal limit for BAC is 0.08% for drivers over the age of 21. However, if your BAC level is higher than 0.15%, it’s considered an aggravating factor. A high BAC level can lead to enhanced penalties, including increased fines and longer jail time.
- Prior DUI Convictions
If you have prior DUI convictions, it can significantly aggravate your current DUI charge. In Georgia, the penalties for a second or subsequent DUI offense are much harsher than for a first-time offense. You may face longer jail time, higher fines, and longer license suspensions.
- Causing Property Damage or Injury
If your DUI resulted in property damage or injury to another person, it can aggravate your charge. In Georgia, if you cause property damage or injury while driving under the influence, you may face additional charges, such as reckless driving or vehicular homicide. These charges can result in severe penalties, including lengthy prison sentences.
- Driving with a Suspended or Revoked License
If your license is already suspended or revoked and you’re caught driving under the influence, it can significantly aggravate your charge. Driving with a suspended or revoked license is a criminal offense in Georgia and can result in significant fines, jail time, and other penalties.
- Refusing a Breathalyzer Test
If you refuse to take a breathalyzer test during a DUI stop, it can aggravate your charge. In Georgia, the state’s implied consent law requires drivers to submit to a breathalyzer test if they’re suspected of driving under the influence. Refusing the test can result in an automatic license suspension and can be used against you in court as evidence of guilt.
- Driving with a Minor in the Vehicle
If you were driving under the influence with a minor (a person under 18 years old) in the vehicle, it can also aggravate your charge. In Georgia, this is considered child endangerment and can result in additional charges and penalties. The penalties can include jail time, fines, and loss of custody of the child.
- Excessive Speeding or Reckless Driving
If you were speeding excessively or driving recklessly while under the influence, it can also aggravate your charge. This can lead to additional charges of reckless driving, which is a separate criminal offense in Georgia. Reckless driving can result in severe penalties, including jail time and fines.
- Driving a Commercial Vehicle
If you’re caught driving under the influence while operating a commercial vehicle, it can significantly aggravate your charge. Commercial drivers are held to a higher standard than other drivers and are subject to more stringent regulations. If convicted of a DUI while driving a commercial vehicle, you may lose your commercial driver’s license (CDL) and your job.
- Blood or Breath Test Refusal
In addition to refusing a breathalyzer test, refusing a blood test can also aggravate your charge. In Georgia, if you refuse a blood or breath test, the police can obtain a warrant to forcibly take a blood sample. If you refuse to comply with the warrant, you may face additional charges of obstruction of justice, which can lead to severe penalties.
If you’re facing a DUI charge in Georgia, it’s essential to understand the various factors that can aggravate your charge. A DUI charge can lead to severe penalties, including jail time, fines, and loss of driving privileges. It’s crucial to seek the help of an experienced DUI defense attorney who can work to mitigate the charges and penalties you may face.
Willis Law Firm is a law firm in Georgia that specializes in DUI defense. If you’re facing a DUI charge in Georgia, Willis Law Firm can provide expert legal representation to help you navigate the legal system and protect your rights.
Here’s how Willis Law Firm can help with your Georgia DUI charge:
- Expert Legal Knowledge
The attorneys at Willis Law Firm have extensive experience in Georgia DUI law and can provide expert legal knowledge to help you understand your charges and the potential consequences.
- Aggressive Defense Strategies
Willis Law Firm will work diligently to build a strong defense strategy that can help reduce the charges and penalties you may face. We will carefully review the evidence against you and explore all possible legal defenses.
- Negotiation with Prosecutors
Willis Law Firm can negotiate with the prosecutors to reduce the charges and penalties you may face. We can also work to have the charges dismissed or reduced through plea bargaining.
- Court Representation
If your case goes to court, Willis Law Firm can provide skilled courtroom representation to ensure your rights are protected. We will argue on your behalf and present evidence that supports your case.
- Support and Guidance
Facing a DUI charge can be a stressful and overwhelming experience. Willis Law Firm can provide the support and guidance you need throughout the legal process. We will keep you informed of any developments in your case and answer any questions you may have.
Willis Law Firm can help you with your Georgia DUI charge by providing expert legal knowledge, aggressive defense strategies, negotiation with prosecutors, court representation, and support and guidance. If you’re facing a Georgia DUI charge, contact Willis Law Firm today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can help you.