At or before your arraignment in Fulton County, your Fulton County DUI Lawyer will file motions. Motions can either be procedural or substantive.
Procedural motions are motions to get the police report, the video and all other discovery involved in your DUI Case. These types of motions should be filed in every single case without exception. No prosecutor will treat your defense attorney seriously unless discovery motions are filed.
Substantive motions include motions in limine and constitutional motions. Constitutional motions can either site the Georgia Constitution and the United States Constitution. Many times the Georgia Constitution will provide greater rights and protections than the United States Constitution. However, Georgia Law must at least provide rights guaranteed by the United State Constitution.
Some of the rights protected are the right to remain silent, the right to an attorney, the right to see, hear, and cross-examine the witnesses against you, and the right to a trial by jury. Those rights cannot be taken from you unless you waive them.
In addition, you have the rights against self-incrimination, and the right to not have your property or person seized without due process. In a DUI, these rights are expressed by the fact that you cannot be pulled over without reasonable articulable suspicion that a crime has occurred. Also, you cannot be arrested without probable cause that a crime has occurred. Those rights are protected by the 4th Amendment.
You also have statutory rights, passed by the Georgia Legislature. Those rights include the right to be informed of your implied consent rights, including your right to an independent test of your blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substances at your own expense and by qualified personal of your own choosing.
In the event your Fulton County DUI Attorney determines that your constitutional or statutory rights have been violated, he will file the appropriate motions in response. Those motions may possibly lead to some of the evidence against you suppressed (thrown out). That is why motions are so important. Most DUI cases are won and lost at the motions stage. If you do not have your motions filed at or before arraignment, you may very well waive your best possible defense to your DUI case in Fulton County.
In our next installment, we will talk about plea bargaining.