In most instances, a first DUI offense is a misdemeanor. When a person has several DUI charges or numerous other traffic offenses, the DUI will be charged a felony. A first DUI can be a felony if there are minor children in the car. While a misdemeanor DUI has harsh penalties, a felony DUI conviction will make the person just that - a convicted felon. This has ramifications that affect one's career, education, civic, and family life.
If you are charged with DUI in Johns Creek (or in the greater Atlanta area) and there is a minor child under 14 in the car or truck, you will be charged with the additional DUI crime of DUI child endangerment. This is like a second DUI charge because the offense of driving under the influence and driving under the influence while endangering a child do not join together and count as the same offense.
Keep in mind that there will be another count of DUI child endangerment for each child in the car. So if, for example, you get pulled over and charged with DUI and you have 3 kids in the car, this will count as 4 separate and non-merging DUI charges. These offenses are very serious and often result in Habitual Violator and felony treatment.
If you find yourself facing a child endangerment DUI charge, contact an experienced DUI lawyer, Richard Lawson, today for a consultation of the unique factors of your case. In most instances, a lot can be done to reduce the severity of these charges or to even beat the charges altogether.