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Ignition Interlock Device FAQs

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If you are a man or woman that has been charged with multiple DUIs, you may have been ordered to use an Ignition Interlock Device or IID before you are able to operate your car. The IID is a fairly small machine, but a little bit larger than your typical cell phone. After this device has been installed in your car, you will not be able to drive it unless you provide the machine a breath sample that indicates that you have no alcohol in your blood stream.

When this device is combined with other alcohol-related treatment programs, it can be effective in lessening repeat DUI offenses. Listed below you will find some frequently asked questions and answers for your benefit:

Q: Is my Ignition Interlock Device able to detect medications that have alcohol in them?

A: Yes, your IID will most certainly detect the alcohol in your meds. These machines are designed to sense any alcohol that you may have in your blood stream regardless of the source. This includes mouthwash, cough syrups and many other over-the-counter products. During your Ignition Interlock Device training course, you will learn about which products present risks and which do not. It’s a good rule of thumb to avoid alcohol-based products altogether if you are trying to turn your car on with an IID.

Q: Can my spouse or relative use my car with an IID installed?

A: Yes, they can. It should be noted that if the person operating your vehicle does not pass the breath test of the IID, you will be the one held responsible. Each and every result that your IID puts in its memory bank will be tied back to you, not your spouse, relative or friend.

Q: I missed the service appointment for my Ignition Interlock Device. What will happen?

A: Most IIDs have the ability to remind you when it needs maintenance. If you notice the device flashing or making noise, it’s probably because it needs to be repaired or serviced. However, if you ignore the service notifications and ignore your appointment as well, the device will shut your vehicle off and lock you out of the car. The best way to avoid this mess is to show up to your appointment dates. If you miss one, contact the necessary organization or your probation officer and inform them of your issue.

Q: I’m not in the financial position at this time to pay for an Ignition Interlock Device. What can I do?

A: In certain cases a judge will grant you an Ignition Interlock Device waiver. In order to obtain this, you must be able to show the judge that paying for the IID is a serious hardship for you financially. The best way to be certain that you obtain a waiver is to consult with one or more Savannah criminal defense attorneys. An aggressive, seasoned lawyer like Dennis O’Brien will fight for your right to claim your waiver.

DUI and the Holiday Season

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Home for the Holidays

Most of us like to get together with friends and families during the holidays, and enjoy each other’s company with great food and great drink. It’s very common for men and women in Georgia to celebrate the season with a few cocktails at a party or a few beers at a bar. Police officers across the state know this, and are beefing up their numbers and cracking down on folks who may be driving under the influence.

According to statistics, holidays (and the days leading up to and following them) have alarming rates of accidents that are alcohol-related, sometimes resulting in injuries or even deaths. The GOHA or Governor’s Office of Highway Safety tells us that in 2012 between the 20th of November and the 31st of December there were:

  • 679 Injuries
  • 1,119 traffic incidents that involved alcohol
  • 20 fatalities

Incidents that were DUI related in 2012 were up 11 percent from the year before. Because of this fact, local law enforcement agencies have been teaming up with nonprofit organizations to produce a media campaign that focuses on preventing DUIs during the holidays. This collaboration is called TEAM Georgia and includes officials specializing in public safety, local businesses and local business owners, police officers, and famous athletes from various sports teams in Atlanta.

The result of this is a greatly increased presence of law enforcement on all roads and highways.

Drive Safe this Holiday Season

It’s never a good idea to get behind the wheel of an automobile if you have had a few drinks, even if you feel like you can drive. If you make the decision to do so and you get pulled over, it is important that you contact an experienced Savannah criminal defense attorney such as Dennis O’Brien. The last thing that you want to have to explain to your friends or loved ones is why you can’t see them this holiday season because you are incarcerated for driving under the influence.

The O’Brien Law Firm PC’s team of professionals is here for all Georgia residents this holiday, so if you have been accused of a DUI or another crime, call our office for a free consultation to see how we can help you avoid hefty fines and long jail times.

Avoiding an Inexperienced Criminal Defense Lawyer in Savannah

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A lot of folks in Georgia and around the U.S will openly admit that they don’t like lawyers. It’s a pretty common theme amongst most people. But what is worse than finding out that the lawyer that you put your trust in (even if you didn’t like him or her) isn’t as great at their job as they said that they were?

It’s a horrible feeling to realize that your lawyer isn’t up to par, but if you take to heart some of the following tips, you can avoid that feeling altogether.

Do Your Homework – This of it like this: if you just moved to a new city, and you knew that your car needed some body work, wouldn’t you ask around and do some research to find the most trusted body shop with the best prices?

Finding the right criminal defense lawyer in Savannah or Atlanta is similar, in that you should do your due diligence and find the right lawyer for you. If you are facing a criminal charge, the result of your case is one that you will have to live with for the rest of your life, so take the time to make sure that you choose a great criminal defense lawyer. Searching the phone directory is just the first step.

Experience Matters – It might be hard for a lot of people to believe, but there are a lot of lawyers in this world who have never tried a case in the entire span of their career. One of the first questions you should ask your lawyer is how many trials he or she has had. Also consider asking:

• Were the cases that you been involved in civil or criminal cases?
• Were the cases in front of a jury or a judge?
• How many cases did you win last year?
• How many cases have you won this year?

Specialized Case=Specialized Lawyer – It is a good rule of thumb to not hire a general practitioner to do a specialized job. Most criminal defense cases are very in-depth and contain many nuances and intricacies that only a seasoned attorney like Dennis O’Brien can navigate through.

If time is of the essence in your case and you do not have enough time to search for a proper criminal defense lawyer, Dennis O’Brien can help. With years of experience as a lawyer as well as a police officer, O’Brien Law Firm PC brings a unique set of skills and understanding to the table that other lawyers cannot. Contact us today for your free initial consultation.

How a Great Savannah Criminal Defense Attorney Wins Cases

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If you have been accused of a crime, you should know that dealing with your charge is a very important piece of business that needs to be handled with care and efficiency. No matter whether you are charged with a felony or a misdemeanor, your case needs to be handled with care, as you could face life-long consequences and repercussions. That is why so many men and women in Savannah, Georgia and the surrounding areas choose Dennis O’Brien as their Savannah criminal defense lawyer.

A trusted professional like Dennis O’Brien will be able to provide you with the services and expertise that you need to help you on your day in court. So, why else should you utilize the services of a criminal defense lawyer?

Knowledge – A great criminal defense attorney knows the court system like the back of their hand, and all of the nuances that come along with Georgia state law. Every case that an attorney takes is going to be different, but any lawyer worth his or her salt will have the foundation of knowledge on their side to help achieve the best results possible.

Influence – A seasoned criminal defense lawyer in Savannah like Dennis O’Brien knows who the judges and prosecutors are in their county and its surrounding areas from negotiating and working with them in the past. As such, they know what practices and strategies are more and less likely to work in a given case, depending on the prosecutor(s) and judge assigned to their client.

Dedication and Research – Depending on the type of case a lawyer is working with, a great deal of research is required to formulate a strategic defense for their client. This includes reviewing all of the evidence of the case, contacting all witnesses and much, much more. This requires dedication and professionalism, which only the best defense lawyers can provide.

If you or somebody that you know has been accused of a crime, choose Dennis O’Brien to represent you. He exemplifies each of the qualities listed above, and will fight to make sure that your rights have been upheld and do everything in his power to ensure that you are awarded a satisfactory outcome in your case.

How Many Drinks Have You Had? Savannah DUI Lawyers Answer Questions

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I have been cooperative in every aspect of my first DUI case. What happens if I plead guilty in court?

Because of the DUI laws in the state of Georgia, if you plead guilty to your first DUI charge you will receive mandatory jail time. Despite your cooperation, the judge ruling over your case has no other choice but to sentence you to jail time. When you plead guilty to your first DUI charge your license will also be suspended for one year, and you will have a DUI on your criminal record which may result in less employers hiring you. You will also experience higher automobile insurance rates among other consequences.

I do not recall my arresting officer reading me my Miranda rights. Can my case be thrown out?

A police officer only has to issue you your Miranda rights after you have been arrested and before he or she interrogates you. Under Georgia law, a police officer does not have to give a Miranda warning during an officer’s initial DUI investigation. It is a good rule of thumb to keep quiet and not say anything that may incriminate you before, during or after you have been arrested. However, if you have been placed into custody, interrogated, and not issued a Miranda warning any incriminating statements you make will not be admissible in the court of law.
It is always a good idea to contact one of the Savannah DUI lawyers if you have any questions regarding Miranda rights or any other facet of DUI law.

A colleague of mine mentioned the 10 day rule. What is this?

The 10 day rule comes into play if you refused to take a urine, blood or breath test. If this is the case in your situation, you are looking at a one year suspension of your driver’s license. You can avoid this by requesting a hearing to the Georgia Department of Public Safety, which must be hand written. If you do not make this request within 10 business days of your arrest, then your Georgia driver’s license will be suspended automatically.

Understanding Domestic Violence

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In the State of Georgia, any act of violence or threat to a member of one’s family who is living underneath the same roof can possibly lead to charges of domestic violence. Domestic violence is unique, in that these types of cases usually do not require much evidence in order for a police officer to make an arrest.

While most people think that a domestic violence charges usually involve a boyfriend-girlfriend or husband-wife situation, domestic violence cases in Georgia can include verbal abuse, dating violence, threats of violence, and neglect.

Being accused of domestic violence is a serious accusation, and one that can ultimately end in time spent in jail, loss of one’s job, and issues with child custody. It is because of these serious consequences that those who are accused of domestic violence need to contact an experienced Savannah criminal defense lawyer like Dennis O’Brien with O’Brien Law Firm PC, who can help save your character and public reputation.

Below, you will find a few definitions pertaining to domestic violence so that you will be privy to some terminology commonly associated with these serious charges.

Domestic Violence Terminology

Family Violence – This term refers to any felony offense or any simple assault, assault, simple battery, battery, criminal damage to property, criminal trespassing or unlawful restraint of a household member or family member.

Household or Family Member – Those who are considered household or family members can be past or present parents of the same child or children, stepparents and stepchildren, foster parents and foster children, or anybody who is living or formerly lived in the same home together.

Family Violence Protection Order – An alleged victim will file this petition in a Protective Order Hearing. Commonly known as a restraining order, this petition is filed by an alleged victim with the Court. The person who files this petition feels that there is evidence to support the fact that domestic violence has happened in the past, and will most likely continue to happen in the future.

FAQ’s On Sexual Offenders

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In today’s age of ultra-sophisticated technologies, where any man or women with a regular income can purchase high speed internet for their home computer, laptop, mobile device or tablet, more and more citizens in the State of Georgia are finding themselves in situations involving internet sex crimes. It is a known fact that federal agencies as well as local police departments have units that specialize in finding sexual predators.

Those who are convicted of these types of crimes often have to deal with very harsh consequences, including lengthy prison time as well as time on parole, when that sex offender will register with the Georgia Sex Offender Registry. Because of this reality, it is wise for every citizen to know and understand some important questions that are commonly asked pertaining to sexual crimes in the State of Georgia.

What is a Sexual Offender?

  • A sexual offender is any individual who has been convicted of a criminal offense against a victim who is a minor or any dangerous sexual offense.
  • A person who has been convicted under the laws of another state or territory, under the laws of the United States, under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, or in a tribal court of a criminal offense against a victim who is a minor.

What is a Sexually Dangerous Predator?

  • A person who was designated as a sexually dangerous predator between July 1st, 1996, and June 30, 2006.
  • A person who has been determined by the Sexual Offender Registration Review Board to be at risk of perpetrating a dangerous sexual offense in the future.

Who is Required to Register with the Georgia Sex Offender Registry?

  • Any man or woman that has been convicted after July 1st, 1996 of a dangerous sexual offense.
  • Any man or woman that has been previously convicted of a criminal offense against a victim who is a minor and may be released from prison or placed on supervised release, probation, or parole after July 1st, 1996.
  • Any man or woman that has been previously convicted of a sexually violent offense or dangerous sexual offense and may be released from prison or placed on parole, supervised release, or probation on or after July 1, 1996.

If you or somebody that you know or love has been accused of being an internet sex offender, and you live in the State of Georgia, it is crucial that you contact a quality Savannah criminal defense attorney who offers sex offender criminal defense such as O’Brien Law Firm PC, so that you or your loved one’s case can be reviewed.

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O'Brien Law Firm PC
33 Bull Street Suite 540
Savannah GA, 31401
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