Criminal Defense Attorney in Skidaway Island, GA.

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Drug Attorney Skidaway Island, GA
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Learn about our areas of experties involving state crimes, and better understand your rights.

 Drug Defense Lawyer Skidaway Island, GA
Federal Crimes

Learn about our areas of experties involving state crimes, and better understand your rights.

If you are accused of a crime, the only thing standing between your freedom and a verdict of "guilty" is an experienced criminal defense attorney in Skidaway Island, GA.

Those who have been arrested before know that life in the legal system is no laughing matter. Aside from the imminent ramifications of fines and jail time, any goals you have of bettering yourself and advancing your life could be compromised. Without a trusted attorney by your side, you could face a lifetime of embarrassment and poor employment prospects due to a tarnished criminal record.

The good news? Dennis O'Brien and his team of experienced lawyers in Skidaway Island are ready to clear your name. By retaining the help of a criminal defense attorney early in the legal process, you have a much better chance of securing your freedom and living a life as a productive member of society.

At O'Brien Law Firm PC, our practice was founded to fight for the rights of individuals accused of or charged with a crime. Our team of legal experts is well-equipped to take even the most difficult, contentious cases. From violent felonies to DUI, there is nothing we haven't seen and handled. As a former law enforcement officer, founding attorney Dennis O'Brien knows exactly how much a person can lose if convicted. That's why we work tirelessly to secure a verdict that is favorable for our clients.

Regardless of how serious or minor your case may be, know that we will fight fearlessly on your behalf. You deserve zealous representation - when you hire O'Brien Law Firm PC, you will receive nothing less.

 Drug Lawyer Skidaway Island, GA
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The O'Brien Law Firm PC Difference

Many of our clients are surprised to discover that founding lawyer Dennis O'Brien was a police officer prior to his criminal defense career. As a former Field Training Officer for the Memphis Police Department, he has over two decades of knowledge and experience in the criminal justice system. Dennis truly understands the nuance and complexities involved in a criminal defense case. This rare experience gives Dennis a clear edge in any criminal defense case and gives clients priceless peace of mind when they need it the most. Unlike some criminal defense attorneys in Skidaway Island, Dennis O'Brien and his team believe that every client deserves effective, empathetic legal assistance. While some Skidaway Island criminal defense firms will take weekends off or pass along cases to paralegals, Dennis personally reviews each of his cases. There is no case too small or big for O'Brien Law Firm PC. When you hire our firm, you can rest easy knowing that we will be by your side when the going gets tough.

 Federal Defense Attorney Skidaway Island, GA
Here are just a few reasons why O'Brien Law Firm PC is Skidaway Island's top choice in criminal defense:
  • Vigorous Representation
  • Fierce Dedication to Clients
  • Unmatched Experience
  • Face-to-Face Counsel
  • Prompt Response to Inquiries and Questions
  • Commitment to Defending Your Rights
  • Thorough, Effective Research and Investigation
  • Contact Us or Call: 912-704-5150
 Criminal Defense Law Firms Skidaway Island, GA
Our firm has represented hundreds of criminal defense clients in Skidaway Island and is highly qualified to take your case. Some of our specialties include:

Drug Cases in Skidaway Island, GA

When you are charged with a drug crime in Skidaway Island, it can change your life forever. Georgia imposes very strict punishments for drug offenses. The truth is, it's hard to get your life back on track with a drug charge on your record. Your freedom and way of life could be in the hands of your criminal defense attorney. As such, you need a competent lawyer with years of experience handling drug cases. Leaving your fate in the hands of an incompetent attorney could have long-lasting effects on your family and may result in a conviction.

 Criminal Defense Lawyers Skidaway Island, GA

Consequences for drug crimes in Skidaway Island often include:

  • Jail
  • Prison
  • Heavy fines
  • Community service
  • Court-ordered drug and alcohol counseling
  • Probation or parole
  • Permanent criminal record

While the consequences for a drug crime in Georgia are serious, there's reason to be hopeful: O'Brien Law Firm PC is here to fight for you. Remember - being charged with a drug crime is NOT the same thing as being convicted.

Our stellar team has represented many clients facing numerous drug-related charges. While each situation varies, one constant remains the same for clients facing drug charges: a fear of what lies ahead. At O'Brien Law Firm PC our job is to help you overcome the fear of the unknown. We do so by ensuring you understand your charges, the possible outcomes associated with those charges, and the options you need to consider from a criminal defense standpoint.

With more than a decade of experience as Skidaway Island drug crime attorneys, we have the experience and resources to defend you in court no matter what your charges may be, including:

  • Marijuana
  • Crack
  • Cocaine
  • Heroin
  • Methamphetamine
  • Ecstasy

No matter what charge you are facing, our team has the experience and resources to build a comprehensive defense strategy for your drug case in Skidaway Island, GA. Without a criminal defense attorney acting as your advocate, you could be facing very harsh penalties. Here are a few punishments you could be facing for drug crimes in Skidaway Island:

  • Schedule I or Schedule II Drug Possession
    Schedule I or Schedule II Drug Possession:

    Having less than a gram (or one milliliter for liquids) of this type of drug results in a prison term of one to three years. Having four grams or milliliter carries a term of one to eight years.

  • Schedule III, IV, or V Drug Possession
    Schedule III, IV, or V Drug Possession:

    Any substance on this list is punishable by a prison sentence of one to three years.

  • Non-Narcotic Schedule II Drug Possession
    Non-Narcotic Schedule II Drug Possession:

    If you have less than two grams or milliliters of this substance, punishments can be between one year and three years. Having up to four grams or milliliters results in a prison sentence of one to eight years.

  • Possession of Marijuana
    Possession of Marijuana:

    Those who are in possession of less than an ounce of marijuana are subject to a jail sentence of up to 12 months. Fines may be no more than $1,000. Possession of more than an ounce of marijuana can result in a prison term of one to 10 years.

To avoid these life-changing punishments, you must take action now. Contact O'Brien Law Firm today for a consultation about your case.

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 Defense Lawyers Skidaway Island, GA
 Criminal Defense Attorney Skidaway Island, GA

Violent Crime Cases in Skidaway Island, GA

Violent crime offenses in Skidaway Island typically involve some form of bodily harm to another individual, actions committed against an individual's will, or threatening someone with bodily harm. Aggravated violent offenses are more severe charges and often occur when a violent crime is made more serious due to circumstances like deadly weapons.

Much like serious drug cases, violent crimes create an added layer of negativity that follows the accused for the rest of their life. In these cases, even an accusation is enough to cause irreparable damage to a person's reputation. Those convicted of a violent crime face severe penalties that can include years in a correctional facility.

Common crimes of this nature include but are not limited to:
  • Murder
  • Assault with the intent to murder
  • Vehicular homicide
  • Domestic violence
  • Assault
  • Battery
  • Kidnapping
  • Rape
  • Robbery
  • Carjacking

When you are accused of any of the above crimes, your freedom hangs in the balance. The outcome of your case will determine whether you leave the courtroom with your freedom intact or stripped away to serve time behind bars. Because the punishments for violent crimes are so extreme, you should be seeking legal counsel from a criminal defense attorney in Skidaway Island, GA, as soon as possible. As a former police officer with a long record of positive verdicts in violent crime cases, Dennis O'Brien is well equipped to represent you in court.

Having a criminal defense lawyer by your side is the best way to avoid the serious punishments associated with violent crimes. These punishments usually result in prison time if convicted and include:
Forced rape: 20 years
Armed robbery: Up to 20 years
Simple assault: Up to 12 months
Aggravated assault: 10 to 20 years
Aggravated battery: Up to 20 years
Involuntary manslaughter: One to 20 years
Vehicular homicide Up to 15 years
Murder: Life in prison or the death sentence
Zealous Representation Without Judgement

As a former police officer, Dennis O'Brien has seen the toll it takes on a person when charged with a crime. His time in law enforcement allows him to empathize with his clients who desperately need competent representation. Despite being innocent until proven guilty, accusations are scary, and conviction could be a reality. That is why you must work with a trustworthy criminal defense lawyer in Skidaway Island, GA who will work tirelessly to clear your name.

Clients choose O'Brien Law Firm because we believe in open communication, honesty, and hard work. It is not our job to act as judges for those who have been accused of crimes. Rather, our goal is to find the best defense that allows us to protect our clients' rights and freedoms.

DUI Cases in Skidaway Island, GA

Driving under the influence (DUI) is one of the most common crimes committed in Georgia. Punishments for such a crime can be severe, and for understandable reasons - when a person operates a vehicle while they are intoxicated, they're putting their life and the lives of others at risk.

While DUI is a serious crime that completely upend the accused's life, the earnest desire to end drunk driving can make police officers too eager to catch a person who they believe is under the influence.

 Criminal Defense Law Firm Skidaway Island, GA

The city of Skidaway Island, Georgia, has implemented severe punishments for DUI, even for first-time offenders. Individuals charged with DUI in Skidaway Island could face:

  • Very expensive fines and fees
  • Loss of license
  • Incarceration

Fortunately, if you or someone you love has been charged with DUI, there is hope. This is particularly true when the accused is administered a breath or blood test for DUI. In fact, cases that involve a breath and/or blood test are beaten daily. When you hire O'Brien Law Firm PC, we will dive deep into your DUI case in Skidaway Island and examine every angle possible for your case to be dismissed. Here are just a few questions our team will investigate:

  • Was the stop legal? If not, your case could be dismissed
  • Is there enough evidence or probable cause to arrest you? If not, Dennis O'Brien will file a pre-trial motion and will fight hard to have your case dismissed before trial.
  • Did the police read you your implied consent rights? If not, your case could be thrown out. Failure to read implied consent rights to the accused is one of the most common police errors.
  • Were your blood testing records and breathalyzer results maintained? Breath testing comes with inherent weaknesses that can create doubt in a juror's mind.

There are numerous ways to beat a DUI case in Georgia, from unreliable field sobriety tests to inaccurate state-administered breath tests. As a veteran criminal defense lawyer in Skidaway Island, GA, Dennis O'Brien has the knowledge and experience to expose the state's mistakes and fight for your rights. When you hire O'Brien Law Firm PC your chances of dismissal are greatly increased. When your case is dismissed, you can continue living life without the burden of a criminal record.

 Criminal Justice Attorney Skidaway Island, GA

If you or someone you love is accused of a crime in Skidaway Island, GA, don't leave fate up to the prosecution. Take the necessary steps to protect yourself and your family before it's too late.

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Latest News in Skidaway Island, GA

Wild Georgia: Annual wildflower pilgrimage celebrates spring

After a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19, my most favorite event of the year (besides Christmas) was back last weekend — the Georgia Botanical Society’s annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage.For me, there’s no better celebration of Georgia’s superb beauty and biodiversity in spring than the three-day pilgrimage — held each year in a different part of the state and offering several field trips to explore surrounding natural areas.This year’s pilgrimage was based in Savannah, a starting point for ...

After a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19, my most favorite event of the year (besides Christmas) was back last weekend — the Georgia Botanical Society’s annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage.

For me, there’s no better celebration of Georgia’s superb beauty and biodiversity in spring than the three-day pilgrimage — held each year in a different part of the state and offering several field trips to explore surrounding natural areas.

This year’s pilgrimage was based in Savannah, a starting point for exploring a variety of coastal habitats — salt marshes, marsh hammocks, maritime forests, river swamps and others.

It also offered a chance to blend nature with rich human history. In particular, one of the field trips I took was a botanical survey of Savannah’s famed 175-year-old Bonaventure Cemetery. I was torn between admiring the cemetery’s unique sculptures and architecture and keeping up with our leader Tim Estep, who was pointing out the native wildflowers, vines and other plants growing on and around the century-old graves — lyre-leaf sage, wood sorrel, rain lily, yellow passion flower vine and others.

The cemetery’s dominant flora, of course, is its magnificent live oaks (Georgia’s official state tree), draped in Spanish moss and sprouting resurrection ferns from massive limbs.

Another outing took us to the edge of a salt marsh along the Sandpiper Trail at Skidaway Island State Park. By far, the marsh’s most abundant plant is Spartina alterniflora, or marsh grass, which covers hundreds of square miles along Georgia’s coast.

The marshes’ second most common plant is black needlerush. Our leader Bobby Hattaway warned us that needlerush can seriously damage an eye or eardrum if poked by one of the plant’s needle-sharp stems.

Our walk ended on a marsh hammock, or small marsh island, with dense swaths of saw palmetto, one of Georgia’s four native palms. An effective treatment for prostate ailments is made from the plant’s black berries that appear in fall, Hattaway noted.

IN THE SKY: From David Dundee, Tellus Science Museum astronomer: The moon is full Saturday night — the “Flower Moon.” The Lyrid meteor shower peaks at 20 meteors per hour on Thursday and Friday nights (April 21-22) in the northeast sky. Venus, Mars, Saturn and Jupiter are in the east a few hours before sunrise.

Easter events this weekend in Savannah

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Easter is quickly approaching and that may leave you wondering what there is to do in Savannah to celebrate the holiday. Here is a list of some of the Easter events going on in Savannah this weekend.Easter Egg Scavenger HuntWhere: Skidaway Island State ParkWhen: Sunday, April 17 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.Price: There is no price listed.More information can be found through the link ...

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Easter is quickly approaching and that may leave you wondering what there is to do in Savannah to celebrate the holiday. Here is a list of some of the Easter events going on in Savannah this weekend.

Easter Egg Scavenger Hunt

Where: Skidaway Island State Park

When: Sunday, April 17 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Price: There is no price listed.

More information can be found through the link here.

Easter Egg Hunt with food and games

Where: Forsyth Park

When: Saturday, April 16 at 10 a.m.

Price: There is no price listed.

More information can be found through the link here.

Beer-ster Egg Hunt Brunch

Where: 535 E 39th Street

When: Sunday, April 17 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Price: There is no price listed.

More information can be found through the link here.

Easter Eggstravaganza

Where: Keller’s Flea Market

When: Saturday, April 16 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Price: Free

More information can be found through the link here.

Easter Egg Hunt (for ages 3-12)

Where: Jennifer Ross Soccer Complex

When: Friday, April 15 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Price: There is no price listed.

More information can be found through the link here.

Easter Egg Hunt at Service Brewing

Where: Service Brewing

When: Saturday, April 16 from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m.

Price: Free but there is a suggested donation of $5 each.

More information can be found through the link here.

Ardsley Easter Egg Hunt

Where: Hull Park

When: Saturday, April 16 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Price: Free

More information can be found through the link here.

Adoption Eggstravaganza

Where: B&D Burgers, 11108 Abercorn St

When: Sunday, April 17 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Price: There is no price listed.

More information can be found through the link here.

Easter Egg Hunt

Where: The Seed Church

When: Saturday, April 16 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Price: There is no price listed.

More information can be found through the link here.

Easter Brunch at Plant Riverside District

Where: Plant Riverside District

When: Sunday, April 17 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Price: $79 per adult and $35 per child aged 5 to 12.

More information can be found through the link here.

First Assembly of God Easter Celebration

Where: First Assembly of God

When: Saturday, April 16 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Price: Free.

More information can be found through the link here.

Sharon Productions Carver Heights Community

Where: Carver Heights Park and Community Center

When: Saturday, April 16 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Price: Free

Bluffton Area Easter Egg Hunt

Where: Bluffton Eagles Field

When: Saturday, April 16, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Price: Free

What to do in Savannah this weekend

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – The weekend is almost here and the spring weather means that it is the perfect time to get out and have some fun in Savannah. Here’s a list of some of the events happening in town this weekend to help you figure out what you want to do.Mother’s Day Cards CraftWhen: Friday, May 6 from 12 to 4 p.m.Where: Skidaway Island State ParkPrice: Parking is $5 but the event itself is freeFor more information, you can visit the link ...

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – The weekend is almost here and the spring weather means that it is the perfect time to get out and have some fun in Savannah. Here’s a list of some of the events happening in town this weekend to help you figure out what you want to do.

Mother’s Day Cards Craft

When: Friday, May 6 from 12 to 4 p.m.

Where: Skidaway Island State Park

Price: Parking is $5 but the event itself is free

For more information, you can visit the link here.

Forsyth Farmers Market

When: Saturday, May 7 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Where: Forsyth Park

Price: Free to attend

A link to a page with more information can be found here.

Sonye’s 5K Walk for the Cure

When: Saturday, May 7 from 1 to 7 p.m.

Where: Lake Mayer

Price: No price is listed but donations are encouraged.

For more information, you can visit the link here.

Marsh Discovery Hike

When: Saturday, May 7 from 3:30 to 5:00 p.m.

Where: Skidaway Island State Park

Price: Parking is $5 per car and admission is $5 each

For more information, you can visit the link here.

Savannah’s Premier Derby Party

When: Saturday, May 7 from 4 to 7 p.m.

Where: Reynold’s Square

Price: $150 to $200 per person

Visit the link here for more info.

Tales of Arabian Nights

When: Saturday, May 7 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m.

Where: Lucas Theatre for the Arts

Price: $29 to $69 depending upon seating.

Find more information on the event at this link.

Savannah Scottish Games and Celtic Festival

When: Saturday, May 7 from 6:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Where: Bethesda Academy

Price: $15 for adults, $5 for students, free for those 10 and under.

For more information, you can visit the link here.

Mommy and Me Bird Craft

When: Sunday, May 8 from 10 to 10:30 a.m.

Where: Skidaway Island State Park

Price: Parking is $5 but the event itself is free.

Visit here for more details.

Cirque du Soleil: Crystal

When: Events all weekend

Where: Enmarket Arena

Price: Starting at $45

For more information, you can visit the link here.

Free Family Weekend at the Jepson Center & Telfair Academy

When: Events all weekend

Where: Jepson Center and Telfair Academy

Price: Free

For more information you can visit the link here.

Flood Resilience: The Tybee Island Back River Study

Residents along Georgia’s coast are familiar with flooding, but the recent rise in sea levels means those floods have grown more frequent due to rising high tides, even on sunny days without rain.Researchers from the University of Georgia’s Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems (IRIS) and River Basin Center (RBC) are working with the City of Tybee Island on the Tybee Is...

Residents along Georgia’s coast are familiar with flooding, but the recent rise in sea levels means those floods have grown more frequent due to rising high tides, even on sunny days without rain.

Researchers from the University of Georgia’s Institute for Resilient Infrastructure Systems (IRIS) and River Basin Center (RBC) are working with the City of Tybee Island on the Tybee Island Back River Study to develop natural infrastructure solutions for flood-susceptible areas.

“We […] look at all the information together to try to come up with a solution that achieves the goals of the project—improving coastal resilience and sea level rise adaptation—but does it in a way that can be implemented given the social and political context,” said Alfred Vick, Georgia Power Professor in Environmental Ethics in UGA’s College of Environment and Design.

Vick, an affiliate of IRIS and the RBC, and his colleagues are focused on finding flood solutions informed by local community input so they can develop recommendations that address the needs of the City of Tybee Island.

To support their goals, the researchers deployed a GeoSurvey, which is a mobile and computer application that collects crowdsourced data. Tybee Island residents submitted photos of flood damage directly to the GeoSurvey, which the research team used to identify and create recommendations for flood-prone areas impacted by flooding, erosion and marsh die-off.

The research team also organized a virtual problem-solving meeting, or a charette, for residents and stakeholders in spring of 2021 to help navigate the complex economic and social factors at play.

The goal of the charette was to pinpoint potential areas of conflict for residents, like perceptions that government buy-back programs for flood-vulnerable properties offer limited benefits for property owners, and to find possible solutions, like innovative retreat strategies that would allow people to rent back their properties.

By including the community in their search for solutions from day one, the team was able to build local, user-generated information that served as an invaluable resource in developing recommendations—like building bioretention systems and bioswales—to alleviate run-off and other flooding issues.

Vick hopes the Back River Study will not only build resilience for the City of Tybee Island but will also serve as a blueprint for other island communities looking to combat sea level rise.

“Tybee is an early adopter,” Vick explains, “I think that’s the big impact. They were on the forefront of thinking about resilience and sea level rise and they remain at the forefront, so everyone is looking to see what Tybee does. When we finalize this plan, I think it will be seen very quickly as the precedent, and other island communities can take it and reinterpret it for themselves.”

IRIS and RBC affiliates will maintain an ongoing working relationship with the City of Tybee Island to emphasize their commitment as long-term partners vested in the island’s ecological health and its community’s resilience.

This collaboration between IRIS, the RBC and the Tybee Island Back River Study highlights how interdisciplinary research can lay the groundwork for increasingly innovative and resilient solutions that respond to flooding and sea-level rise in Georgia and beyond.

The Tybee Island Backwater Study also included Brian Bledsoe of the College of Engineering; Jon Calabria and Alison Smith of the College of Environment and Design; Jill Gambill of Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant; and Clark Alexander of the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography.

IRIS and the RBC are both dedicated to tackling complex water-management issues. IRIS integrates natural and conventional infrastructure systems to build community resilience in the face of disruptive events, like flooding and sea level rise. The RBC connects freshwater science to management and policy through applied scientific and policy research on the sustainable management of aquatic resources and ecosystems.

Savannah author Karen Dove Barr takes inspiration from her backyard to write her first novel

For Do SavannahIt’s never too late. To learn, do, try new things. It’s never too late to be who you’ve always wanted to be. Author, Karen Dove Barr, knows this well.After 25 years of writing, and at 74 years young, Barr has published her first novel, “Burnt Pot Island,” a historical fiction about rum-runners, moonshiners, Savannah, and the Pinpoint community during Prohibition.The idea for the story came in the early 1980s when Barr and her husband broke ground on their home o...

For Do Savannah

It’s never too late. To learn, do, try new things. It’s never too late to be who you’ve always wanted to be. Author, Karen Dove Barr, knows this well.

After 25 years of writing, and at 74 years young, Barr has published her first novel, “Burnt Pot Island,” a historical fiction about rum-runners, moonshiners, Savannah, and the Pinpoint community during Prohibition.

The idea for the story came in the early 1980s when Barr and her husband broke ground on their home on Skidaway Island. In surveying, they found the footings of a much older structure along with shards of blue pottery.

“The dirt could tell you a lot of stories,” reflected Barr, standing in her kitchen sunroom, eyes fixed on a large oak in the side yard. “When we bought the property, there was hardly any development on this end of the island, and it felt alive with so much more to say. Voices from the past certainly whispered to me when I finally sat down to write.”

Barr was only a few years into her 44 years in law when they found the pottery shards. The fiction of “Burnt Pot Island,” though, would have to wait three decades to be teased from the earth. And in those intervening years, Barr not only came to know many people in Pinpoint through her legal representation, but also bravely tried things she’d always wanted to do.

“When I turned 50, I started running,” recalled Barr. “And that actually helped with my writing. I’d always wanted to write but so many people told me I wasn’t any good at it, and so I didn’t, not creatively, until I started running. When I run, I find that the pace and rhythm of moving my legs connects me to my thoughts, and then words, stories, and ideas come freely.”

A few years after her running-writing epiphany, Barr self-published a collection of essays, “Running Through Menopause,” in which she explored her experience of taking up competitive running for the first time as a middle-aged woman. From there, her work went on to appear in Runners’ World, Fitness Magazine, and Savannah Magazine. Barr self-published another book in 2013 featuring her wildlife photography paired with essays about nature experiences on Skidaway Island.

Not long after that nature book, a member of her church pulled Barr aside and told her about an abandoned house on Burnt Pot Island where he and his friends would camp out as teenagers and that got her thinking about the old footings and pottery shards in her yard.

“I was really curious about his story, and then others, mostly men, approached me with tales of boating to the island and staying in the abandoned house as a sort of rite of passage in the ‘60s and ‘70s. So, I wanted to know who owned that house and its significance to the surrounding islands,” said Barr.

Barr, ever the attorney, went to work researching deeds and titles, uncovering that the Mayor of Savannah acquired Burnt Pot Island in 1909 and eventually built a mansion on it. She then went down the rabbit hole of Google books, reading archived Savannah City Council minutes and Savannah Morning News stories.

After four years of researching and writing, she pieced together a possible, yet fictitious, story about Burnt Pot Island, the abandoned mansion, and what was likely going on in her own backyard at Skidaway Island.

“To be clear, 'Burnt Pot Island' is historical fiction, it’s my creation,” emphasized Barr, seated at her writing desk surrounded by books, sticky pads, and manila folders stuffed with handwritten notes.

“But from my research, the owner of this island could have been involved in alcohol smuggling during Prohibition, and Burnt Pot Island could have played a strategic role in all of that. It’s pretty common knowledge Skidaway Island was home to moonshiners then, and that’s verified in my research.”

More:New comic book 'Nightmare in Savannah' tackles tough themes in a 'love letter to the weirdo kid'

After four years of writing, Barr started pitching perspective publishers. She received 278 rejection letters before finally landing an offer from a boutique imprint in Oregon. From start to finish, it took Barr six years to research, write, and publish her first novel.

The story takes place during Prohibition and involves international rum-runners, Skidaway Island moonshiners as well as the story’s heroines, mother and daughter Catherine and Licia, who live in Pinpoint processing oysters and crab for a wealthy and often unscrupulous businessman. For Barr, it was extremely important her language and storytelling were culturally appropriate.

She attended seminars on Geechee culture and spoke with people she knew personally in Pinpoint. She asked then-Savannah alderwoman, Carol Bell, to read and edit the manuscript for cultural sensitivity.

“At the end of the day, the hearts and minds of people are the same no matter where you’re from,” emphasized Barr. “Women have the same struggles across the world. Women want their children to get ahead and succeed. This common thread was central to the story. People’s inner core, needs, and desires are the same the world over, and I hope my story shows that to be true.”

Order copies of "Burnt Pot Island" from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Wal-Mart and from Karen Dove Barr at karendovebarrauthor.com.

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