Hinesville Underage DUI Lawyer

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Hinesville Underage DUI Attorney

It is illegal for anyone of any age to operate a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs in the state, yet driving under the influence (DUI) is one of the most commonly prosecuted criminal offenses in the Hinesville area each year. There are penalties assigned for various types of DUI offenses, including underage DUI. An experienced Hinesville underage DUI lawyer is your most valuable asset if you have been accused of this offense.

Defense Counsel for Underage DUI Cases in Hinesville, GA

Jarrett Maillet J.D., P.C., has extensive criminal defense experience and has helped many past clients overcome a wide range of criminal charges in Hinesville, including DUI. When you have been arrested for any crime, the Fifth Amendment protects you from self-incrimination, allowing you to remain silent during arrest and booking. The Sixth Amendment ensures you have legal representation.

An experienced Hinesville underage DUI lawyer can help determine the optimal defenses available in your current situation. If you are the parent of a driver under the age of 21 charged with DUI, it is vital to understand how the state’s Zero Tolerance policy works and how it applies to your case. It is also essential to understand how the right defense attorney can make a significant impact on the outcome of your impending case.

After arrest and booking, a defendant should use their opportunity to make phone calls to contact a Hinesville underage DUI lawyer as quickly as possible. This attorney can help them secure any evidence that may aid in their defense, review the details of how the police handled arrest and booking, and determine whether any violations of their rights occurred.

Understanding DUI Charges

Just like every other state, Georgia uses a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) measurement to determine whether a driver is intoxicated by alcohol. The legal BAC limit for most adults is .08%, and any amount over this qualifies as DUI. For commercial vehicle drivers, the BAC limit is .04%, and the Zero Tolerance policy applies to all drivers under 21. This means any detectable BAC over .02% results in a DUI for a driver under 21.

The logic behind the Zero Tolerance policy is the simple fact that it is illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to purchase or consume alcohol. DUI is extremely dangerous for any driver, especially for young drivers, so the Zero Tolerance policy aims to curb rates of injuries and deaths from impaired driving among the youngest demographic of drivers.

One important factor that all drivers under the age of 21 must understand is the fact that if they are charged with DUI, they can actually face harsher penalties than a driver over the age of 21 caught with the same BAC. This is because they could be charged with both DUI and underage drinking and driving. Penalties for underage DUI in the state can be severe, and it is vital to know what to do after an arrest.

Potential Penalties for Underage DUI in Hinesville

The state assigns penalties for DUI convictions on a sliding scale that accounts for multiple factors. It is also possible for a DUI to qualify as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the aggravating and mitigating factors present in a case. Aggravating factors work against the defendant and increase the severity of their charges and their sentence, while mitigating factors work the opposite way, potentially helping them secure lighter penalties.

A first conviction for underage DUI in Hinesville is likely to result in a fine, community service, and a driver’s license suspension. It’s common for an underage driver to have their license suspended until they turn 21, and they may also face jail time in light of any serious aggravating factors. This is especially likely if they cause great bodily harm or death.

A second DUI conviction within 10 years will see these penalties increased. For any DUI convictions beyond a second within 10 years, the defendant automatically faces aggravated DUI charges. Judges also have discretionary power to assign specific penalties they believe suit a particular defendant. For example, if the defendant displays signs of a substance abuse and/or mental health issue, a judge may consider compulsory treatment in lieu of jail time.

What to Expect From a Hinesville Underage DUI Lawyer

You have the right to legal representation when you are charged with any crime, and it is vital to take full advantage of this right. You could have more defenses available to you than you initially realize, and even if you know you broke the law, you are more likely to see leniency from a judge when you have experienced legal representation arguing for you.

A Hinesville underage DUI lawyer can carefully review the police report of your arrest and examine how the police handled your arrest and booking. If there were any due process violations or violations of your rights, your attorney will know how to ensure these issues are appropriately considered by the court. If you were wrongfully accused and/or there was a problem with your chemical test, your attorney can address these issues as well.

When a defendant has clearly broken the law and conviction is all but a certainty, prosecutors are sometimes willing to make plea deals with these defendants, offering lighter sentences and/or reduced or dropped charges in exchange for immediate guilty pleas. This helps conserve court resources and may lead to a much lighter penalty for the defendant. Your attorney can advise you as to whether any such deals would suit your interests.

Jarrett Maillet J.D., P.C., can work closely with you through all stages of your underage DUI case in Hinesville. Attorney Maillet is adept at identifying procedural missteps from police and prosecutors. Our team can assist you in determining your most viable defenses to the charges filed against you and do everything we can to alleviate any penalties assigned in sentencing.

It’s vital to act quickly to secure legal representation after an arrest for any crime in Hinesville. Whether you are looking for defense counsel for yourself or on behalf of a loved one, contact us today and schedule a consultation with a Hinesville underage DUI lawyer to learn how we can assist you with your case.