If you are arrested for DUI in DeKalb County, you will most often be taken to DeKalb County Jail on Memorial Drive near I-285. Most of the police departments in DeKalb County utilize that jail, including the Georgia State Patrol, the DeKalb County Police, the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department, Decatur Police, and Avondale Estates Police. The Doraville Police Department maintains their own jail and will frequently hold people arrested for misdemeanors there until they are bonded out, besides this one exception, however, most people are taken to the DeKalb County Jail. If you or someone you know has been arrested for DUI, call a DeKalb County DUI lawyer today.
Central booking is a term that is used to refer to the series of offices in the jail where a person who has just been arrested is brought in and checked in, or booked, into the jail.
Typically, a nurse administers a brief medical screening to the person that was arrested, then they are photographed and fingerprinted. In the case of a DUI arrest, a breath or blood test may be taken initially. Eventually, a person who has been arrested is allowed to access a telephone to contact a loved one or a bonding company.
The DeKalb County Jail requires that people have a calling card or make a collect call if they are contacting a loved one, while there are toll-free numbers for the bonding companies so that they are accessible.
Central Booking is where people are booked into jail and may be held for short periods of time, such as 12 hours to overnight if it appears they will be released soon or bonded out. In the example of a DUI case, people who are arrested will usually stay in central booking until either bond is placed for them, or two days pass. If they are held up to 48 hours, the DeKalb County Jail releases them on signature bond, meaning that they do not have to post any money, with the idea being that the charge is for a first offense DUI, and they have already spent enough time in jail so are given a court date and released.
Georgia state law requires that a person spend a minimum of 24 hours in jail for arrest for a DUI but the fact of the matter is that they can spend up to one year in jail in certain cases. Most often, for a first offense DUI for a guilty plea or a nolo plea, a person is not resentenced. However, if the case goes to a jury trial then the judge decides if a person deserves any jail time which can result in anywhere from one day in jail to as many as 10 days depending on the facts of the case. If the facts are horrible, then a person could actually get six months to one year in jail for a DeKalb County DUI.
Mandatory minimum is a term that refers to the lowest possible part of a sentence that a judge could give in a certain case. For example, on the first-offense DUI for an adult driver who blew over the legal limit, the court is required to sentence that person on a guilty verdict to a minimum of 12 months in jail, a fine of not less than $300, at least 40 hours of community service, required attendance with a DUI school, and drug and alcohol dependency evaluations. The judge can, for example, give a fine of up to a $1,000 but cannot go below $300. The judge could give 200 or 300 hours of community service but must give at least 40. So the 12-month probation, the 40-hours community service, and the $300 fine are mandatory minimums that the judge must impose as a minimum.