A lot of people think that, if they’re stopped for DUI, they get to go home with a ticket and a court date. Of course, they can’t drive themselves home. The cops will let them call someone to come pick them up. In reality, it works nothing like this. If you’re arrested and charged with DUI in Athens, you will go to jail. You’ll be booked with all of the other criminal defendants. Yes, you will get to make your one phone call. And that call should be to one of two people. You need to either call a DUI defense lawyer in Athens, or you need to call a close friend or family member. When you hang up with them, they need to call a skilled Athens DUI lawyer.
What a lot of people don’t know is that you’ll be in court for your arraignment, or first appearance, within hours or days of your arrest. You may be let out on bail. Or, if you’re really lucky, they’ll let you go on your own recognizance. Either way, you need to show up for your first court date or you will be locked up. You don’t want to show up to this appearance all alone. You really should go with an experienced Athens DUI defense lawyer.
Will You Have to Go to Jail if You are Arrested for DUI?
Once you’re arrested and charged with DUI, you will go to jail. How long you have to stay there depends on the circumstances. If you have a clean criminal record, they may let you go within a few hours. This will either be done by your paying bail or by the prosecutor agreeing to release you on your own recognizance. If you have a history of getting into trouble, you may not be released so quickly. It could take a day or two for the judge to set bail. And there’s no guarantee you’ll be able to pay the bail.
What is Your First Appearance and Why Do You Need an Athens DUI Lawyer?
Within a day or two of your DUI arrest in Athens, you’re going to need to attend something called an arraignment. This is where the judge reads the charges that have been levied against you. They’ll explain what the charges mean and what the possible penalties may be. The judge is also going to ask whether you’re pleading guilty or not guilty. Once you enter a plea, it may not be so easy to change it later on. That’s why it’s a good idea to have an experienced DUI defense attorney from Athens in the courtroom with you. This is also where your attorney can discuss a possible plea deal with the prosecutor. Depending on the evidence the State has to use against you, they may be willing to offer you a fair deal. But if you have prior DUIs, it’s going to be hard to get them to reduce or dismiss the charges.
Call and Talk to an Experienced Athens DUI Lawyer Right Away
If you’re arrested and charged with DUI in Athens, Georgia, you should be scared. A DUI is a serious charge. If convicted, you’ll be facing fines, jail time, and a suspension of your driver’s license. Depending on the facts of your car, you may be facing additional charges as well. For example, if you were under the influence and got into an accident, you be facing more serious charges. If someone dies in the crash, you’ll certainly risk being charged with vehicular homicide. Or, if the police find open cans or bottles of alcohol in your car, you’ll likely be charged with an open container.
A DUI conviction carries with it some pretty serious penalties. The last thing you want is to have additional charges filed against you. The best way to defeat these charges or have them dismisses is to retain an experienced Athens DUI lawyer. They’ll attend your arraignment with you. They’ll also work hard to get your charges either reduced or dismissed. You have a much better chance of having this happen if you hire a skilled DUI defense lawyer in Athens rather than trying to handle it yourself.
The best thing for you to do is call our office right away and set up your initial consultation. Let one of our DUI defense lawyers in Athens review the facts of your case and give you an idea of how best to proceed.