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I got charged with DUI and Marijuana Possession in Cherokee County

Question: I was charged with DUI and marijuana possession under an ounce in Cherokee County, Georgia. I was just driving with my wife and a cop pulled us over and he said we were speeding. I don't know if I was speeding, but the Cherokee deputy said that I was going 18 miles per hour over the speed limit.

When he came to the side of my car he said he could smell pot and asked me if I'd been smoking. I said he probably just smelled alcohol because I had a couple of beers, but that I had not smoked any marijuana.

I got out of the car and I did all of his tests for DUI. He looked at my eyes, had me walk a straight line and then he told me to hold my leg up. I think I may have passed.

But my wife was pretty drunk and she insulted the cop from the car. She said he was a moron and that he had no right to stop me. When the policeman walked over to the car, she kept insulting him. That's when the cop noticed a fat joint on the center console.

If my wife hadn't said anything and hid the pot the police office would never have found it. So now I'm facing a DUI charge and a marijuana possession charge. And I have a DUI drugs charge too. I'm confused. What should I do?

P.N. in Woodstock, GA

Answer: We always tell clients that when they are stopped by a police officer to be respectful, but to not answer any questions other than their name and where they live. As experienced Cherokee County DUI lawyers, we've found that volunteering too much information is never a good idea, and many people get into even more trouble by talking to the police.

It appears that your wife's actions gave the Cherokee officer a reason to go back to the car, where he then saw a joint on the center console. Because it was in plain view, it can be seized by the police officer and used as evidence against you.

We would like to know if you took a breathalyzer test or a blood test. Both can provide powerful evidence for prosecutors, or they can help your case if the tests are negative or if you "blow" a low number. It all depends on what is found.

Generally speaking, a "plain" alcohol DUI is better than a "DUI-drugs" charge. That's because with a DUI-drugs charge, there is a "hard" license suspension, whereas with a first DUI charge you would likely be able to obtain a driving permit from the Georgia Department of Driver's Services.

We have helped many clients who have been charged with marijuana possession. It is important that the possession charge be handled properly so that its impact is lessened for you.

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