Experienced Felony DUI Lawyer
in Morgan County, Georgia
Although usually prosecuted as a misdemeanor, a felony DUI is a serious charge with major consequences to you now and in the future. A felony conviction carries with it a sentence from 1 to 5 years and you may go to prison. Your freedom, your ability to drive, and, once released from custody, your ability to get to school or work are at stake. In the future, your ability to access credit, obtain a professional license, find and keep meaningful employment are all in jeopardy. And your rights as a citizen can be curtailed. Not to mention, convicted felons in Georgia lose their right to vote, to hold public office, and to own and possess firearms. It is important to know that there is a statute of limitations when it comes to DUI in Georgia. Call our Georgia Felony DUI Lawyer and protect your future.
When you’ve been charged with felony DUI in Georgia, Michael Fulcher Law can help. Michael Fulcher Law can provide you with the best criminal defense with over 17 years of combined DUI experience as a prosecutor, public defender and private defense lawyer.
Knowing the criminal statutes, the rules of evidence, and criminal procedure is only the beginning. Added to this knowledge base is 15 years of experience working in Greene County and the surrounding areas so that Michael Fulcher Law knows the reputations of police, prosecutors, and judges. This combination of legal savvy and experience with the players means the most skilled and competent legal defense you can find.
You deserve skilled legal representation to rigorously defend your rights, preserve defenses, and challenge the prosecution to be fair. You need an attorney who knows the prosecutors and how to negotiate with them to a fair and reasonable resolution. If a trial is necessary, you want an experienced Georgia felony DUI lawyer who knows how to defend a case before a judge and jury and has real courtroom experience and successes. Too much is at stake with a felony prosecution to settle for less.
What Does the Georgia Law Say About Felony DUI?
Felony DUI encompasses a range of charges, all of them serious, with serious consequences upon conviction.
Felony DUI includes:
- Fourth Georgia DUI charge in a 10-year period
- Habitual violator
- Child endangerment
- Serious injury by vehicle
- Vehicular homicide
- Vehicular infanticide
- Homicide or serious injury by interference with traffic control device
Any of these underlying charges requires a professional assessment of the strength of the prosecutor’s case, looking at the stop and arrest procedures, and analyzing the toxicology and police reports. A felony DUI conviction carries mandatory prison time and substantial fines along with a permanent place on your criminal and driving records. That’s why you need to retain a skilled and competent Georgia Felony DUI Lawyer to represent you as early in the proceedings as possible.
Let’s examine each of the possible felony DUI–related charges.
Fourth Georgia DUI Charge in a 10-Year Period
The convictions that are included in counting to a fourth DUI charge within a 10-year period only include convictions on or after July 1, 2008. Any prior convictions cannot be counted. In addition to a 10-year driver’s license suspension, with ignition interlock possible after the first 2 years of suspension, a judge can impose a sentence of 1-5 years in prison with a mandatory minimum of 90 days in county jail. Fines are between $1,000-$5,000, with additional court fees to pay for mandatory programs and even the cost of probation. Other penalties include 60 days of community service, DUI school, 5-years probation, less time served, clinical evaluation, mandatory alcohol/drug treatment, surrender of the license plates for all your registered vehicles, and publication of your photograph as a habitual violator in your local county newspaper.
is a status that attaches when anyone is convicted of a third or subsequent DUI within 5 years, or any combination of additional vehicular crimes—fleeing or attempting to elude police, racing, leaving the scene of an accident, homicide by vehicle, serious injury by vehicle, or fraudulent or fictitious use or application of a driver’s license. The status as habitual violator can attach if you are convicted of any of these three charges stemming from even a single incident. Violating the terms of your habitual violator status can result in revocation of any limited driving privileges and prison.
Sentencing is harsh with up to 5 years in prison, $1,000-$5,000 fines and additional court fees, 2-5 year license suspension, 30 days community service unless sentenced to 3 years in prison, DUI school, clinical evaluation, and up to 5-years probation, less time served. There is the possibility of installing an ignition interlock system if awarded a limited HV driving privileges once released from prison.
Arrest for DUI with children under the age of 14 in the vehicle can result in charge of both DUI and child endangerment. You can also be charged separately for child endangerment for each underage child. A single arrest, even with a clean driving record, can result in a felony charge, habitual violator status, and increased sentencing. Besides driving while impaired, child endangerment can also be charged if you have failed to fasten a child’s seat belt, neglected to use a car seat for an infant or toddler, or engaged in dangerous driving.
A conviction for felony child endangerment can mean 1-5 years in prison and a fine of $1,000-$5,000 fines and court fees.
Serious Injury by Vehicle
An accident resulting from DUI driving that causes another person bodily harm can result in a charge of serious injury by vehicle. Serious injury means dismemberment or disfigurement, organic brain damage, loss of the use of a limb or other body part, loss of vision in one eye, 2-inch scar on the forehead, broken ribs, or severe bruising. The serious injury need not be permanent to qualify for this felony charge. In addition to the possibility of a subsequent civil suit for damages, upon conviction, you can be sentenced to 1-15 years in prison, a 3-year license suspension without an opportunity for early reinstatement, and no limited driving permit privileges.
a felony charge can be brought for vehicular homicide in the first degree if the driver caused the death of another person while driving recklessly or under the influence of alcohol/drugs or caused a fatal accident and left the scene. Sentencing requires 3-15 years in prison. If you had habitual violator status at the time of this arrest, at least 90 percent of any prison sentence must be served inside. A conviction also raises the specter of a civil suit for wrongful death brought by the family of the deceased.
If an unborn child was killed due to injuries caused to a pregnant woman or her death, resulting from DUI driving, a separate charge of vehicular feticide can be brought. A felony charge can result in a 3-15 years prison sentence.
Homicide or Serious Injury by Interference With Traffic Control Device
This felony charge involves attempting to or actually damaging or alterating an official traffic-control device, railroad signals, and signs. Sentencing is 5-20 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.
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When you need a lawyer after being charged with a DUI or criminal offense or as you explore your options for filing a personal injury claim, look no further than Michael Fulcher Law’s impressive background, and ultra-attentive client service. To learn more about how we can help you achieve the best legal solution possible for your circumstances, call our criminal defense law firm at (706) 438-1555 or contact us online, and schedule your free consultation today.
How Can a Georgia Felony DUI Lawyer Help Me?
Facing a criminal prosecution for felony DUI can be a terrifying experience. A criminal defense attorney is your guide, advocate, and protector. Navigating any criminal prosecution without an attorney is so dangerous that the U.S. Constitution provides that you are entitled to representation by a lawyer if your liberty is at stake. If you can afford a lawyer, hire one. If you cannot afford a lawyer, the court will appoint a public defender.
You want to hire the best criminal defense lawyer because your liberty, your reputation and your future are in jeopardy.
A skilled and competent criminal defense attorney will:
- Research the facts of your case as gathered by the police
- Investigate police tactics to ensure that evidence was gathered legally
- Independently examine the quality of evidence against you
- Locate and interview any witnesses
- Hire investigators and expert witnesses, as needed
- Represent you in all court proceedings
- Negotiate with the prosecutor’s office on your behalf to reduce bail, charges, and sentencing
Only a skilled and competent criminal defense lawyer has the knowledge and experience to navigate the criminal justice system, knowing how to provide you with a realistic and compassionate assessment of the quality of the case the prosecution has put together against you.
Only a skilled and competent criminal defense lawyer knows when a plea deal is the right route. Due to public and political pressures and the backlog of cases, and overcrowded prisons, most prosecutions resolve without a jury trial, relying on plea negotiations with sentencing agreements. However, your criminal defense lawyer should have extensive trial experience so that you have the option to demand a trial before a jury of peers, as provided for in the Constitution if that is the smartest choice to make.
Michael Fulcher Law is that skilled and competent Georgia felony DUI lawyer you can trust to bring you through investigation, indictment, arrest, and resolution. Let us help you. Call or email now for a free consultation.
What Are the Consequences of a Conviction for Felony DUI?
As you can see, the sentencing guidelines for conviction of felony DUI ensure that the consequences are devastating to you and to your family. A conviction may open you up to years of litigating any subsequent civil suit for damages or wrongful death. If there are marital struggles, a conviction can lead to divorce and loss of child custody.
Once time has been served, putting together your life becomes extremely difficult with a permanent criminal record and its impact on access to credit, housing, employment, licensing, and education. A commercial driver’s license is lost. Automobile insurance becomes unaffordable. And if your driver’s license is ever reinstated, your driving will be forever examined for the slightest infractions.
Skilled and competent felony DUI defense lawyers are needed to fully assess your case and rigorously defend you against these serious charges. Michael Fulcher Law offers the best representation in Greene County and the surrounding counties of Morgan, Jasper, Putnam and Taliaferro. With over 17 years of experience both prosecuting and defending these kinds of felony DUI charges, Michael Fulcher Law will assess the strength of the prosecution’s case, evaluate all of your possible defenses, and let you know what options you have moving forward. Call (706) 438-1555 or contact us online now for a free consultation.
Frequently Asked Questions
The prosecutor must prove all the elements of each crime beyond a reasonable doubt. The role of defense counsel is to introduce doubt. Doubt can be created by cross-examining witnesses, producing contradictory evidence through independent toxicology reports and expert witnesses, and even putting on exculpatory witnesses.
“Mr. Fulcher has been tremendously helpful with my case. Since hiring him he has consistently returned my calls as quickly as he can. We discussed an ideal outcome, and I set about doing exactly as he said. Following his advice we were able to get a very favorable outcome. He is always quick to answer any questions, and has stayed very engaged with me throughout this ordeal. Michael provides excellent counsel, and I would recommend him to anyone!”