Being convicted of a DUI in Atlanta requires having had actual physical control of a moving vehicle. If you were not in actual physical control of the moving vehicle and the evidence shows that then ultimately, you should not be convicted for DUI because the prosecution has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were in actual physical control of a moving vehicle.
The prosecution always has to prove driving, the actual physical control of the vehicle, beyond a reasonable doubt, in Atlanta DUI cases. In some cases the individuals’ levels of intoxication, and whether they were under the influence or not will not even be contested. The defense may admit that someone is under the influence, but choose to fight the idea that they were in control of the moving vehicle. If there was no direct evidence that the individual was behind the wheel or that the vehicle was moving and there was no circumstantial evidence, such as a situation where someone is found asleep at a parking lot or asleep at a red light, where they had to have driven, an attorney may be able to help get their charges reduced or dismissed.
A DUI can happen anywhere from a public roadway to even just a public area. As long as someone has actual physical control of a moving vehicle, which does not include bicycles, but does include almost everything else with an engine including golf carts, moped’s, and cars, they can be charged with a DUI. An individual may even be charged while in a parking lot, a drive through, or with their car parked on the side of the road.
Law enforcement will very frequently will catch people in their cars who may even be parked. With that said there have been cases where people have slept in their cars without driving and been arrested and charged with DUI. Many times when this occurs an experienced DUI lawyer will be able to get the charged dismissed or reduced, however arrests may still take place in certain instances.
The risk standard for a DUI is probable cause. So, an officer theoretically can charge two people found asleep inside a vehicle with DUI because equally, they are both under the influence and he could not determine which one was actually driving.
The court will sort that out later through the evidence, and ultimately a jury or judge will decide or a prosecutor will decide which one was actually driving, but initially they can both absolutely be arrested if it is not readily determined who the driver is.