What to do if you have been arrested for a DUI in Atlanta during Super Bowl week

Many people attending the Super Bowl festivities this week and the Super Bowl game on Sunday in Atlanta, are traveling from out of state.  Atlanta offers many opportunities to celebrate on any given day, even more so during the festivities leading up to Sunday’s Super Bowl game.  The Atlanta City Council announced that alcohol sales in Atlanta will be extended to 4:00 a.m. during Super Bowl week from Monday, January 28, 2019 through February 4, 2019.  Also, law enforcement agencies such as the Atlanta Police DepartmentGeorgia State Patrol,  Cobb, DeKalb, Forsyth, and Gwinnett police departments will increase their patrols and sobriety checkpoints to target impaired drivers.

No one plans or intends to get arrested for a DUI, but it happens.  If you are from out of town, experienced DUI attorneys at Chestney & Sullivan Law Firm is available to speak with you about your Georgia DUI case anytime -including weekends!  We understand that you will need to travel back home when the Super Bowl is over.  We can represent you in your Georgia Driving Under the Influence case and will appear on your behalf in most courts in Georgia for your first court date so you don’t have to.  In many Georgia jurisdictions, you will not have to appear in court until we tell you to. 

If you have been arrested in Atlanta for a DUI, the Atlanta City Detention Center (Atlanta City Jail) and Atlanta Municipal Court have changed their policies regarding bonds pursuant to a city ordinance passed by the Atlanta City Council in February, 2018 to eliminate the “cash bond” practices.  Unfortunately that change has impacted folks with the ability to pay a cash bond to get out of jail sooner as all DUI cases now have to appear before a judge for bond (Chapter 62, Article II, Division 1, Section 62-31 of the City of Atlanta Code of Ordinances).  This means that a person arrested for Driving Under the Influence on Friday in Atlanta, might have to wait until Sunday afternoon to see a judge to bond out before the Super Bowl Game.  One silver lining is Mercedes-Benz Stadium is in walking distance from the Atlanta jail, so there is still a possibility of making it to the Super Bowl.  If you were arrested late Saturday night, you may or may not make the first appearance calendar in Atlanta on Sunday.  The Atlanta City Detention Center is located at 254 Peachtree Street, SW, Atlanta GA 30303.  Their phone numbers are 404.865.8001 and 404.865.8010.  For bond information, click here.  A number of bonding companies are located on Peachtree Street right next to the city jail.  Chestney & Sullivan may be able to expedite the bond process to get defendants out of jail sooner. 

Call Chestney & Sullivan immediately if you, a friend, or loved one have been charged with a DUI in Atlanta or anywhere in Georgia.  Action will need to be taken quickly regarding a possible license suspension that is a separate action from the DUI criminal case.  We can also discuss defense strategies and begin an investigation into your Georgia DUI charges.  Also, important surveillance video footage is not retained for very long in many Georgia jails.  If  the surveillance video from the jail is not ordered within a very short period of time, it will be lost forever.  Some clients may say “great, I don’t want anyone to see my jail video.”  However, we often find that jail videos can help us successfully defend DUI’s.  If the video is not helpful, by the time the prosecution decides to inquire about jail video, it is often recorded over by the jail, and we are under no duty to disclose or turn over any video that we may have to the prosecution. 

It is also important that an investigation is started right away for possible defenses, especially in Atlanta, as court cases move very fast and if a proper investigation is not conducted quickly, negotiations may be hampered in resolving a case to something other than a DUI. 

Call us today at 404.816.8777 to discuss your case.  You will be glad you did.  We are available 24/7.  We can also meet face to face for an initial consultation free of charge.  Our office is conveniently located in the Buckhead section of Atlanta at 3110 Maple Drive, Suite #103, Atlanta, Georgia 30305. 

Atlanta DUI, Near Collision: Reduce to Reckless Driving

James “Skip” Sullivan represented a driver charged with a DUI in Atlanta, where his client ran a red light and almost collided with another vehicle.  The driver of the other vehicle called police and followed our client, who stopped in front of an Atlanta Police precinct.   A DUI investigation was conducted by an Atlanta police officer, where the officer observed major damage to our client’s car.  Our client could not recall how the damage got there or when it happened.  Our client was arrested and charged with DUI.  Mr. Sullivan decided to move the DUI case out of Atlanta Municipal Court over to Fulton County State Court for a jury trial.  Mr. Sullivan believed our client’s due process rights were violated as our client was never read the Georgia Implied Consent Notice, nor was he afforded the opportunity to submit to a chemical test.   The prosecutor in Fulton County State Court agreed and dismissed the DUI charge in exchange for a plea to Reckless Driving.

If you or a loved one have been charged with a DUI in Atlanta, Fulton County, or anywhere in Georgia, call the experienced DUI trial attorneys at Chestney & Sullivan today at 404.816.8777.  

Atlanta DUI Single Car Accident (Dismissed)

Our client was involved in a single car accident in the city limits of Atlanta within the borders of DeKalb County.  He snapped a telephone pole and the vehicle then went through a fence, ended up resting next to a retaining wall of a house.  Fire, EMS, and Atlanta Police showed up on the scene.  the Atlanta police conducted a DUI investigation while EMT’s were working on our client.  Our client was transported to the hospital where he was placed under arrest and read the Georgia Implied Consent notice.  He agreed to take a blood test which showed a combination of alcohol, Ambien, and marijuana in his system.  The DUI case started in Atlanta Municipal CourtMr. Sullivan was not able to negotiate a non-DUI plea in Atlanta, so he requested a jury trial in DeKalb County State Court.   Mr. Sullivan filed various motions attacking the DeKalb State Court prosecutor’s DUI case.  At the hearing, Mr. Sullivan successfully cross-examined the Atlanta DUI officers to the point that after the hearing, he was then able to convince the prosecutor that a jury wasn’t going to like his officers and we stood a good chance of getting a not guilty verdict at trial (even with the blood test result).  The Atlanta DUI charge was dismissed in exchange for a negotiated plea to Reckless Driving. 

Atlanta DUI Refusal (Dismissed)

An Atlanta DUI Task Force Officer was on patrol when he saw our client run a red light (on video).  He initiated a traffic stop and conducted a DUI investigation.  Our client looked reasonably well on the video, but the Atlanta DUI officer made a DUI arrest anyway.  Our client refused to submit to the state breath test.  Mr. Sullivan was able to successfully avoid a one year administrative license suspension for our client and negotiated an outright dismissal of the DUI charge in exchange for a plea to minor traffic offenses with the Atlanta Municipal Court DUI prosecutor

Atlanta DUI Refusal: Dismissed

Our client clearly did not stop at a red light in Atlanta (on video) and a Georgia State Patrol Trooper made a traffic stop.  Client looked good on the video and had no slurred speech.  Performed reasonably well on field sobriety evaluation.  Client refused a portable breath test and was arrested for an Atlanta DUI.  Mr. Sullivan rejected a reckless driving plea offer in Atlanta Municipal Court  as it may affect travel to Canada and sent the case to Fulton County State Court for a jury trial.  Mr. Sullivan successfully negotiated a plea to running a stop sign (which our client clearly did) and a basic rules violation (does not get reported to the Georgia Department of Driver Services). 

Atlanta DUI, speeding: Reduced to Reckless Driving

Our software engineer was pulled over by the Georgia State Patrol in Atlanta for driving fast in a convertible Porsche.  Unfortunately for her, while speeding she did not use her turn signals. According to the State Trooper who pulled her over, she was going 53 m.p.h., then 65 m.p.h., and then 70 m.p.h.  Her performance during field sobriety testing was not great, but her one leg stand performance was not indicative of impairment.  Although she performed the field sobriety exercises, she refused the State’s test.  Despite marginal evidence, she was arrested for DUI in Atlanta under five different sections—essentially, the Trooper couldn’t formulate an opinion as to what she was under the influence of.  We were able to point out the major holes in the case, and the State offered to dismiss all DUI counts, in exchange for a plea to reckless driving.

Atlanta DUI Refusal, Improper U turn: Reduced to Reckless Driving

Mr. Sullivan was able to save our client’s license from being administratively suspended for a year for refusing the state’s breath test after being arrested for an Atlanta DUI by a Georgia State Patrol Nighthawks DUI task force trooper.   Our client made an illegal u turn in view of the trooper and was stopped in a gas station parking lot.  Our client’s passenger was having a medical emergency.  Our client had noticeable slurred speech, but performed reasonably well on field sobriety evaluations.  He was arrested for DUI and refused the state breath test at the jail.  Mr. Sullivan was able to negotiate a dismissal of the DUI charge in exchange for a plea to Reckless Driving, avoiding an Atlanta DUI conviction, but also avoiding a one year suspension of our client’s driver’s license. 

Atlanta DUI Refusal: Reduced

Our client made an illegal turn on red right in front of the Atlanta DUI Task Force Officer.  a traffic stop was conducted, where our client was visibly impaired on the video.  His speech was also heavily slurred, and he berated the officer throughout the entire time the video was running.  Mr. Sullivan was able to persuade the Atlanta prosecutor to reduce the DUI charge down to Reckless Driving and saved our client his driving privileges as well as avoiding a DUI conviction. 

Atlanta DUI, Georgia State Patrol, Refusal: Dismissal of all charges

Our client was stopped by a Georgia State Patrol Nighthawks DUI Trooper in Atlanta for failure to maintain lane.   The failure to maintain lane was obvious on the patrol car video and it took a while for our client to stop.  Our client also did not perform well on field sobriety evaluation and was arrested for her Atlanta DUI and Failure to Maintain Lane.  She refused the state breath test.  The case was moved out of Atlanta Municipal Court by her former attorney who was not associated with our firm.  Her former attorney was disbarred from the practice of law by the Georgia Supreme Court while the case was pending.  An arraignment date was missed due to the fault of her former attorney and she was arrested for failing to appear for court.  She subsequently hired Chestney & Sullivan and we promptly got her case back on a court calendar.  Mr. Chestney and Mr. Sullivan filed various motions, including a motion to dismiss due to the delay of the prosecution bringing this case to trial.  The Fulton County State Court judge agreed with Mr. Sullivan and dismissed all charges against our client.  

Atlanta DUI Accident, Refusal: DUI dismissed

Our client traveled the wrong way down a one-way street in Atlanta and pulled into a gas station where he struck and damaged a gas pump.  An Atlanta officer, who is not a member of the Atlanta DUI Task Force, conducted a poor DUI investigation, but there were still signs of intoxication.  There was no video of this incident from the police.  Although the driving was bad and an accident was involved, Mr. Sullivan was able to persuade the prosecutor to dismiss the Atlanta DUI charge in exchange for a plea to Reckless Driving and a minor traffic offense.