Question: I can't believe I got arrested for a DUI and it might be a felony. It's my not first drunk driving charge. I didn't think it would ever happen to me again. I went to a lot of AA meetings and told my husband that I wouldn't ever drink. But then I started drinking again a couple of weeks after I said I'd never drink.
Then I told my husband I might drink a little wine at dinner or with some friends but I said I'd never drink and drive. But pretty soon I was drinking and driving.
But I didn't think I'd get arrested again for a DUI. I was driving in Roswell after eating on Canton Street and hitting a bar on Holcomb Bridge Road and I got stopped for going thru a stop sign. I cooperated with the Roswell cop and took all the tests. After he arrested me for DUI he took me to the jail and I took a breath test. On the breath test I got a .14.
Now my husband wants to get a divorce, my kids aren't speaking to me and my friend said that I could have a felony charge because it's my second DUI. I really don't want a felony because that's only for really scary criminals.
Is a second DUI a felony?
D.D. in Roswell, GA
Answer: A second DUI is not a felony. Under Georgia law, a fourth DUI in 10 years is a felony. The relevant dates are the dates of each arrest. So if a fourth DUI arrest is made within 10 years, but the date of conviction is outside of the 10-year time frame, it is still considered to be within 10 years. Pushing back the time of the plea or trial will not help.
The exception to the rule of the fourth DUI within 10 years is if someone is killed or seriously injured by a drunk driver. If someone is killed or seriously injured by a drunk driver that will be charged as a felony, even if it is a first DUI.
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