Forsyth County 2/5 DUI Reduced to Reckless Driving

Client arrested in Forsyth County for DUI, and he refused the state-administered breath test.  He has a 2012 DUI conviction, so this would have been a 2nd in 5 years, subjecting him to about six months in jail and a lengthy license suspension if convicted again.  Bob Chestney was selected as lead counsel, and several motions were filed, including a Motion to Suppress his Refusal on Georgia Constitutional grounds (based on the recent Olevik v. State decision by the GA Supreme Court).  At the motion hearing, the State agreed to reduce the DUI to Reckless Driving with no jail.

Although we had lost the ALS hearing, resulting in a 12-month license suspension for the refusal, that suspension will be immediately terminated and deleted from his driving record.

Atlanta DUI Refusal – Reduced

Client was stopped for Speeding 53 mph in a 35 mph zone) and Laying Drags.  Client agreed to perform field sobriety evaluations and looked great on video.  Client’s speech was not slurred.  After being arrested for DUI, the Trooper read the Georgia Implied Consent Notice and client refused the breath test.  Mr. Sullivan was able to negotiate reduced charges in Atlanta Municipal Court where client avoided an Atlanta DUI conviction and also avoided a 12 month license suspension.

East Ellijay DUI, Failure to Maintain Lane: Reduced to Reckless Driving

Client was stopped for Failure to Maintain Lane in East Ellijay, Georgia.  Client agreed to perform field sobriety evaluations and scored 6 out of 6 clues on the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus evaluation,  3 out of 8 clues on the Walk and Turn evaluation and 1 out of 4 on the One Leg Stand evaluation.  Client was arrested by the East Ellijay DUI officer and refused the state breath test.  Mr. Sullivan was able to negotiate a reduced charge and client never had to appear in court.

Smyrna DUI Refusal: Reduced

Client was stopped for speeding in Smyrna.  The Smyrna DUI officer smelled a strong odor of alcohol and asked our client to perform field sobriety exercises.  Client agreed, but only did the horizontal gaze nystagmus evaluation because client had a sore back.  Client looked reasonably well on the video, but was arrested for DUI.  The Smyrna DUI officer read the Georgia implied consent notice but read it wrong where the substance of the notice changed.  Client refused to submit to the state’s breath test.  The prosecutor acknowledged the issue with implied consent notice and Mr. Sullivan was able to negotiate a dismissal of the Smyrna DUI charge and our client entered a plea to reckless driving.

DeKalb County DUI Refusal – reduced

Client was found asleep in the car in the middle of the road with the engine running.  A DeKalb DUI Officer observed vomit on client’s clothes and that client had slurred and slow speech.  Client admitted to drinking and was unsteady upon exiting the car.  Client refused to do field sobriety evaluations and refused to submit to the state’s breath test and was arrested for a DeKalb County DUI refusal.  At a motions hearing the charges were reduced after Mr. Sullivan successfully negotiated a Reckless Driving plea with the prosecutor and the judge.

Roswell DUI Refusal: Not Guilty

Client was stopped for Speeding 60 in a 40 mph zone and Failing to Maintain Lane.  Roswell DUI Officer J. Ott with the Roswell Police Department conducted a DUI investigation.  Client admitted to having a few beers and agreed to perform field sobriety evaluations.  Client scored all 6 clues on the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus evaluation, 5 out a possible 8 clues on the Walk and Turn evaluation, and 3 out of 4 possible clues on the One Leg Stand evaluation.  Client looked reasonably well on the Walk and Turn evaluation, but not as good on the One Leg Stand evaluation.   Client’s speech was clear, stopping sequence was fine, walked fine, and was standing fine when communicating with the officer.  Client refused the roadside breathalyzer as well as the State breath test after client was placed under arrest.  We were not able to reach a non-DUI resolution in Roswell Municipal Court through negotiations, so the case was sent to Fulton County State Court for trial.  Mr. Sullivan elected to trust a judge in Fulton County State Court to decide this case over a jury and the judge found our client Not Guilty of the DUI and Not Guilty of the Failure to Maintain Lane, but convicted our client of Speeding (we did not dispute our client was speeding).  The judge gave a nominal fine on the speeding charge that our client was more than happy to pay.

Atlanta DUI Refusal – reduced

Client was stopped for speeding in Atlanta.  The initial encounter with the Georgia State Trooper was tense with the Trooper berating client – making the client nervous.  Client did not perform well on field sobriety evaluations, due to his nervousness.  After being placed under arrest and read the implied consent notice, client refused to take the state breath test.  During negotiations, the Atlanta DUI prosecutor realized that no one would perform well on field sobriety evaluations after the initial encounter with this Trooper and reduced the Atlanta DUI charge. 

Rockdale County DUI Refusal – reduced

Client was stopped on I-20 due to a concerned citizen call about client’s driving.  Client initially refused to perform field sobriety but after being arrested for his Rockdale County DUI and read Miranda warning, client repeatedly agreed to take the field sobriety evaluations.  The Rockdale County deputy would not let our client do field sobriety evaluations.  After being read the Georgia Implied Consent Notice, client agreed to take the state test of his breath, but when arriving at the jail, client wanted to speak to a lawyer before taking the test.  The deputy took that as a refusal – even though client was previously read Miranda warning.  The prosecution also tried to have admitted into client’s trial a prior DUI arrest where the client was found NOT GUILTY by a jury.  The trial judge would not allow the prosecution to use the prior not guilty verdict.   The prosecution reevaluated its case and the Rockdale County DUI charge was dismissed in exchange for a plea to reckless driving.

Walton County DUI refusal – reduced

Client was stopped for speeding by a Walton County Sheriff’s deputy.  A DUI investigation took place where the deputy saw several signs of impairment and arrested our client for DUI.  The Georgia Implied Consent Notice was read and client had questions about the effect on an out of state driver’s license.  The deputy would not give a clear answer causing our client to refuse the state breath test.  Through negotiations, the Walton County prosecutor agreed to dismiss the DUI and the speeding charge in exchange for a plea to reckless driving.    

Cobb County DUI Refusal – Reduced

Client was stopped by Cobb County Police after driving without headlights and making a left turn on red – all caught on video. A DUI investigation took place that ultimately resulted in our client being arrested for DUI.  The Georgia Implied Consent Notice was read and our client refused the state breath test.   Mr. Sullivan was ready for trial, but on the day of trial with the officer present, the prosecution dropped the Cobb County DUI refusal to reckless driving.  Client accepted the reduced charge.