Some people choose to ride a bicycle because they’re health-conscious. Others simply can’t afford a car or don’t have their license. This time of year, there are more cyclists out there because the weather is getting warmer. A lot of people also think it’s a good idea to ride a bike rather than a driver, especially if they’ve had a few drinks. They’re coming home from a barbeque and they don’t want to get pulled over for a DUI.
What a lot of people don’t realize is that you can actually get arrested for DUI while riding a bike in Georgia. Georgia considers a bicycle a vehicle. This surprises people. They assume that, if something doesn’t have a motor, it’s not a vehicle. That isn’t the case. The DUI laws in Georgia do consider a bicycle a vehicle. This means that the same DUI laws apply to someone on a bike as they do a car.
If you’re arrested and charged with DUI in Athens, Georgia, you’re going to need a good Athens DUI defense lawyer. Just because you were riding a bike, that doesn’t mean you can’t get in trouble. And the penalties are going to be just as severe. There’s too much at stake to try to handle this on your own.
How Can Georgia Possibly Consider a Bicycle a Vehicle?
In Georgia, they consider all bicycles as moving vehicles for purposes of a DUI. The same rules apply. This is because you are just as likely to hurt someone if you’re driving your bicycle while intoxicated. You could run a pedestrian over with your bike. Or you could get into an accident with a motor vehicle. This could lead to the same sort of injuries as if you were driving a car or SUV. At the end of the day, the DUI laws are meant to protect everyone – you included. The legislature knows that people can get hurt – and cause other people to get hurt – while riding a bike. And if you’re drunk or high, you’re just as likely to cause an accident as if you were in a truck.
The Law and the Penalties for DUI Are the Same on a Bicycle
The laws for DUI are the same on a bicycle as they are for a car. This means that, if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is over a .08, you can be charged with DUI. The police can pull you over on your bike and give you a breathalyzer. And, if you refuse a breathalyzer, you can be ordered to take a blood or urine tests. These tests will reveal if you’re been drinking alcohol. They’ll also reveal if you have any illegal drugs in your system. If this is the case, you will be charged with DUI.
The police can also ask you to do a field sobriety test. If you don’t perform well, you’re going to be arrested and charged with DUI. Your DUI defense lawyer in Athens can argue that the test was not fair. They can also argue that it wasn’t administered properly. This may be enough for the prosecutor to agree to dismiss the charges. Or they may agree to reduce the charges to reckless driving. It depends on the facts of your case.
Contact a Skilled DUI Defense Lawyer in Athens, Georgia
If you’re arrested and charged with DUI in Athens, Georgia, call our office right away. You’re going to have to attend your first hearing within a few days of being arrested. This is where you’re going to have to let the court know if you plead guilty or innocent. It’s best to have a skilled Athens DUI lawyer there with you. They know the law. They also know the prosecutor. They’ll review the evidence and see if they can poke holes in the State’s case. They’ll also negotiate with the prosecutor to try to get your charges reduced or dismissed.
Odds are, the police won’t pull you over if you’re on a bicycle in Athens. However, if they do, it’s important that you have a skilled attorney by your side. The same defenses apply to your case if you were riding a bike as if you were driving a car. Your attorney is going to fight to get you the best possible deal. They have years of experience handling cases just like yours. Call today and schedule your initial consultation.