O.C.G.A. 40-6-395 - Fleeing or Attempting to Elude a police officer is among the most serious offenses a person can face. A high and aggravated demeanor, the offense carries a minimum of 10 days in jail even as a first-time offense (although penalties could depend on the specificities of your case and the abilities of your lawyer.) Fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer may be charged as a standalone offense, however, it is more commonly charged in conjunction with related offenses. These typically may include reckless driving, DUI or hit and run. Fleeing and eluding may occur because the driver fears they will be charged with DUI or another traffic related offense.
Georgia Law on Fleeing/Eluding an Officer:
It shall be unlawful for any driver of a vehicle willfully to fail or refuse to bring his or her vehicle to a stop or otherwise to flee or attempt to elude a pursuing police vehicle or police officer when given a visual or an audible signal to bring the vehicle to a stop. The signal given by the police officer may be by hand, voice, emergency light, or siren. The officer giving such signal shall be in uniform prominently displaying his or her badge of office, and his or her vehicle shall be appropriately marked showing it to be an official police vehicle.
If while fleeing an officer the driver:
(i) Operates his or her vehicle in excess of 20 miles an hour above the posted speed limit;
(ii) Strikes or collides with another vehicle or a pedestrian;
(iii) Flees in traffic conditions which place the general public at risk of receiving serious injuries;
(iv) Commits a violation of paragraph (5) of subsection (a) of Code Section 40-6-391; or
(v) Leaves the state
[They] shall be guilty of a felony punishable by a fine of $5,000.00 or imprisonment for not less than one year nor more than five years or both.
Penalties for Fleeing or Attempting to Elude in Georgia
A conviction under O.C.G.A. 40-6-395 will result in a fine no less than $500 and no more than $5,000. The minimum incarceration period is set at 10 days, with the maximum reaching 12 months. It is up to the sole discretion of the judge whether the imprisonment exceeds the minimum 10 day period.
A second conviction under O.C.G.A. 40-6-395 in a ten-year span (measuring from the date of the previous arrest) will result in a fine no less than $1,000 and no more than $5,000. The minimum jail time imposed increases from 10 days to 30, and may not exceed 12 months. Upon a third conviction, the minimum fine is increased to $2,500 and the minimum jail term increased to 90 days, while the same ceilings apply. If the payment of these fines may impose undue economic hardship on the defendant, per the judge's discretion the fine may be paid in installments.
This subsection of O.C.G.A. 40-6-395 also holds that it shall be unlawful for a person:
(1) To impersonate a sheriff, deputy sheriff, state trooper, agent of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, police officer, or any other authorized law enforcement officer by using a motor vehicle or motorcycle designed, equipped, or marked so as to resemble a motor vehicle or motorcycle belonging to any federal, state, or local law enforcement agency; or
(2) Otherwise to impersonate any such law enforcement officer in order to direct, stop, or otherwise control traffic.
There is hope if you have been charged with Fleeing or Eluding in Georgia. Often times, the defendant is not, in fact, guilty as charged. They simply may not have seen the officer or other factors may have been at play preventing the defendant from stopping. A skilled attorney can help you determine the best defense in your case.
Any misdemeanor or criminal case requires the devoted attention of an experienced attorney. Hall County DUI attorney Richard Lawson is equipped with over 20 years experience defending Georgians against traffic and related offenses. A conviction of any sort could potentially wreak havoc on your life or career and Richard Lawson understands the fear, uncertainty, and confusion that accompany these type of charges.
If you have been charged with Fleeing and Eluding or DUI with a Fleeing and Eluding charge in Georgia, contact a Hall County DUI Attorney today for immediate legal attention. We are here to help 24/7, 365 days a year because your problems need immediate attention.