Being arrested for any reason can often feel like the end of the world. However, a recent article published by an Atlanta news station may offer a ray of hope for those charged with drunk driving in Georgia. It reports that the conviction rates for many populous counties in Georgia are less than 40 percent.
The latest statistics were determined after studying 10 years of information published by the Georgia Bureau of Investigations. The data showed that of 800,000 DUI cases, only 36 percent resulted in convictions. Of the metro counties studied, none reached a 50 percent conviction level.
A representative from the Georgia State Patrol discussed some of the factors involved in the low conviction rate. He stated that DUI cases are often complex and are not clear-cut to prosecute. Also, many charged with driving under the influence are refusing the sobriety tests that officers ask them to take when they are pulled over. These tests have traditionally provided important evidence during prosecution. He also believes that state legislators have removed a good deal of the discretion that officers used to have for evaluating potential DUI arrests.
Though DUI conviction rates in Georgia seem favorable, a conviction can mean the loss of a person’s driver’s license, jail time and heavy fines. Most reductions or dismissals of charges only come when those charged with drunk driving enlist the support of a DUI attorney. Attorneys who are experienced in drunk driving defense and a familiar with the local judicial system can often make the difference between severe penalties and freedom from repercussions.
Source: wsbtv.com, “Investigation finds low DUI conviction rates statewide“, Richard Belcher, Nov. 7, 2016