While visiting South Carolina, Atlanta resident Tamika Bailey, 28, was arrested after allegedly driving while intoxicated with her two young children in the car. According to reports, The South Carolina Department of Public Safety received a complaint that Bailey was driving recklessly before turning into a Kroger on Whiskey Road. The incident report reveals that the witness said it took Bailey several attempts to park into a parking spot. After officers arrived, they allegedly saw Bailey stumbling while being escorted from the store with her young children.
Though Bailey maintained she only had two margaritas two hours before, she failed multiple sobriety tests. She is now facing charges of DUI and two counts of child endangerment. While waiting for Bailey's sister to arrive and take custody of the two kids, an officer attempted to change one of the children's diapers. Instead of finding diapers in the diaper bag, the officer found a bottle of vodka.
Because I am a Dekalb County DUI Lawyer, I can't speak to South Carolina DUI law. However, because Tamika Bailey is a resident of nearby Atlanta, this could have easily happened here. In today's post, I'm going to be walking you through the process of receiving a DUI in Dekalb County.
The Georgia DUI Process
While no two DUI cases can be exactly alike, the court typically follows the same basic steps. As you probably know, the first step in the DUI process happens when a driver is pulled over. If the officer suspects the driver is intoxicated, they will be asked to step out of the vehicle and perform field sobriety tests. Often, a driver may also be asked to submit to a blood or breath test. If the officer believes that the driver is intoxicated, the driver will be arrested and issued a citation for a DUI.
The citation that the driver receives at the jail will provide an arraignment date, which is the initial court date. An arraignment is when the driver will go to court and enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. If the driver has retained a competent DUI attorney, the attorney will generally enter a plea of not guilty in order to have the opportunity to review and access the evidence against the driver. Once the attorney has had the chance to view all the evidence, the attorney will decide if a plea bargain is the right way to pursue the case or if the best decision is to get the case ready for discovery and trial.
Discovery is the pre-trial process of gathering information from the prosecution to learn about the witnesses and evidence they plan to present at trial. If motions, such as a motion to suppress improperly seized evidence, don't work in the driver's favor, the next step is to prepare for trial. The driver has the right to have a trial by jury or, if the prosecution agrees, a bench trial.
At the Law Office of Richard S. Lawson, our team of highly skilled Dekalb County DUI Lawyers knows how to navigate the DUI Process in Georgia. Call our office today to have one of our attorneys help you decide what the best defense strategy is for your case.