Sometimes, the harm caused by drunk driving is immediately obvious. A motorist in Georgia might cause a crash because alcohol affects their decision-making or reaction times. Drunk driving collisions can cause property damage or even injury to other people.
Police officers often screen those involved in collisions for intoxication in order to bring appropriate charges against those who violate the law. Driving under the influence (DUI) charges frequently follow collisions related to alcohol. Others may get arrested during enforcement efforts despite never causing harm to others. They may face technical or per se DUI charges.
What is a per se violation?
Some actions are criminal simply because the law says so. That is the case for impairment while driving. The law in Georgia establishes a 0.08% limit for someone’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC). Someone at or over that limit is subject to prosecution when they fail chemical testing.
A per se infraction is a risk if someone violates the DUI statute regardless of the impact that behavior may have on others. Police officers do not need to prove that someone appeared impaired while driving or that their actions harmed others to arrest them for a DUI offense. They only need proof that someone was over the legally established limit for their BAC.
Someone who is accused of a per se violation could be subject to the same penalties as someone visibly incapable of driving safely due to chemical impairment. A judge can sentence someone to jail time, require that they pay large fines and suspend their driver’s license. The defense strategies people may utilize differ in per se cases when compared with DUIs related to crashes. As such, making sense of Georgia’s drunk driving laws may help people better respond to a recent arrest.