Tennessee Drunk Driving Defense Attorneys

  1. Alcoa
    1. James Snyder: The need for a good criminal defense attorney has nothing to do with the guilt or innocence of the person charged. Being accused of a criminal offense is one of the most traumatic events that can occur to a person. A person charged with committing a criminal offense needs to immediately retain an experienced competent attorney who can answer all questions, address bail issues (if necessary), begin to investigate the facts surrounding the charge(s), and research the applicable law. In choosing an attorney, it is essential that the client feel absolutely confident in the attorney's ability to handle the matter and trust the advice which the attorney gives. Many people who are well meaning will attempt to give helpful advice regarding what the accused should do. Under no circumstances should this advice be relied upon. I have had clients who convinced themselves (or been convinced by others) that they were guilty of a crime when they had either not committed a crime or had an absolute defense. Even when the issue of guilt can be clearly established, it is important to have an attorney who can handle the various sentencing alternatives which may include various ways of keeping the matter off of the person's criminal record, or minimizing the punishment imposed. This can be as important as the issue of guilt or innocence.
  2. Ashland City
    1. Crabtree, Rhonda: Most people rely on their driver's license as their primary mode of transportation. However, if you are facing charges for drunk driving (DUI/DWI), reckless driving, speeding or another traffic violation, you may be worried about losing your license. Although the consequences may seem overwhelming, an experienced lawyer can help.
  3. Bartlett
    1. Young, William: DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE, OR "DUI," IS ONE OF THE MOST SERIOUS AND AGGRESSIVELY PROSECUTED CRIMES IN THE STATE OF TENNESSEE. ALTHOUGH A FIRST OFFENSE DUI IS A MISDEMEANOR, A DUI FIRST OFFENSE CONVICTION HAS LASTING CONSEQUENCES. IN TENNESSEE, THERE ARE TWO WAYS THE STATE CAN PROVE SOMEONE GUILTY OF DUI. THE DUI STATUTE, TENNESSEE CODE ANNOTATED 55-10-401, IS REPRODUCED BELOW: (a) It is unlawful for any person to drive or to be in physical control of any automobile or other motor driven vehicle on any of the public roads and highways of the state, or on any streets or alleys, or while on the premises of any shopping center, trailer park or any apartment house complex, or any other premises that is generally frequented by the public at large, while: (1) Under the influence of any intoxicant, marijuana, controlled substance, controlled substance analogue, drug, substance affecting the central nervous system or combination thereof that impairs the driver's ability to safely operate a motor vehicle by depriving the driver of the clearness of mind and control of himself which he would otherwise possess; or (2) The alcohol concentration in the person's blood or breath is eight-hundredths of one percent (.08 %) or more. The first method of proving DUI is to show that the person was either driving or in physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of a substance that produces a stimulating effect on that person's central nervous system or impairs the drivers ability to safely operate the motor vehicle. Thus, under this method of proving DUI, the State must produce evidence of the driver's impairment. This is typically done with officer testimony as to the driver's driving, behavior, appearance, smell, ability to interact with the officer, the driver's performance on any field sobriety tests the driver was given, and so on. The second, and far more common method of proving DUI is by introducing chemical evidence of the driver's blood alcohol content (BAC), which at 0.08 or higher, constitutes DUI per se in Tennessee. Officers can test a driver's BAC by breath test, blood test, or urine test. Additionally, medical providers may take a blood sample if the driver needs medical treatment. Under most circumstances, submitting to a chemical test is voluntary, but a driver's refusal could lead to an implied consent violation and other consequences. Defending those accused of DUI is complex and challenging. If you or someone you care for is accused of DUI in Bartlett or elsewhere, be sure to select a skilled criminal defense attorney who understands and is comfortable debunking DUI theory and science.
    2. Jeffrey Jones: In Tennessee, drunk driving charges are known as DUI (Driving Under the Influence). Only in other states will you find a DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) charge. Whether you are a Tennessee resident or a visitor from another state, the Law Office of Jeffrey Jones can represent you in matters involving Tennessee DUI charges. License suspension does not result upon arrest, but on after conviction. If we can get you freed from charges or resolve your case without a conviction, you will not lose your license. If you are arrested for a second offense DUI, your car will be confiscated and impounded. Officially, this is known as "civil forfeiture," and is done by the Tennessee Department of Safety, not the police.
  4. Brentwood
    1. Altshuler, Adrian: Criminal Defense If you are facing criminal charges, you are likely to experience a great deal of anxiety. Will you have to go to prison? What if you cannot afford the fines assessed against you? How will you convince a jury of your innocence? Once you have retained an experienced criminal defense attorney, you can rest assured that each step of the criminal process will be explained to you and that your rights will be protected along the way.
    2. George Fusner: Even if this is your first offense, the penalties for driving while intoxicated (DWI) or under the influence (DUI) of a controlled substance or prescribed medications can be serious. Such penalties include:
      1. License suspension
      2. Fines
      3. Attendance in alcohol prevention programs
      4. Jail time

      You may also be charged with higher insurance premiums for a period of several years.

    3. Lee Dryer: A writ of habeas corpus is used by someone in custody to test the legality of his or her confinement. A writ of habeas corpus applies to all confinement or restraint that is unlawful. A writ of habeas corpus only determines the lawfulness of a person's confinement. It cannot be used as a substitute for a direct appeal of the person's conviction.
  5. Bristol
    1. Dougherty, Lynn: Automobile Accidents Business Litigation Criminal Defense Custody Divorce Family Law General Trial Practice Medical Malpractice and Wrongful Death Law Personal Injury Law
  6. Carthage
    1. Brooks, Richard: DUI / DWI The laws relating to drunk driving differ from one state to another, and even vary in terminology ("drunk driving," "DUI" or "driving under the influence," "DWI" or "driving while intoxicated," "impaired driving," etc.) These differences can involve the legal definitions of the offense, effects on license suspensions and/or restrictions, the nature of court and administrative procedures, nature and severity of penalties, what conduct constitutes a felony, and so on.
  7. Chatanooga
  8. Clarksville
  9. Cleveland
    1. Hoffer, Joe: Criminal Defense
    2. Brown, William: * Murder and other violent crimes * White collar crimes including various types of fraud * Misdemeanor or felony drug charges * Sex offenses including rape or sexual battery * Serious traffic matters such as DWI or DUI, including the defense of individuals whose livelihood depends on defending their commercial driver's license from revocation
  10. Collegedale
    1. Harry Miller: Under the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution, a defendant has a right to be confronted with witnesses who testify against the defendant. In addition, under the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution, the defendant has a right to due process. Included in these rights is a defendant's right to be present at his or her trial.
  11. Columbia
    1. Altshuler, Adrian: Criminal Defense If you are facing criminal charges, you are likely to experience a great deal of anxiety. Will you have to go to prison? What if you cannot afford the fines assessed against you? How will you convince a jury of your innocence? Once you have retained an experienced criminal defense attorney, you can rest assured that each step of the criminal process will be explained to you and that your rights will be protected along the way.
  12. Cookeville
  13. Cordova
    1. Cohn Law Firm: Sometimes a trial is the best course of action. The client then has the right to have a jury of his peers hear the evidence, and then decide whether or not the client is guilty, and what the sentence will be.
  14. Covington
  15. Dandridge
    1. Randolph, Jason: Civil and/or Criminal Law Representation A. Personal Injury Representation Automobile accidents Negligence On-the-job accident representation B. Divorce and Family Law Divorce Separation agreements Mediation Wills Child custody Powers of attorney C. Criminal Defense Driving Under the Influence (DUI) charges Criminal defense State of Tennessee parking tickets or driving violations D. Trial Practice Representation before the courts Court proceedings Court Filings E. Wrongful Death
  16. Dickson
    1. Dugan, Mitchell: DUI Drug-Related Crimes Accidents Injury Workers’ Compensation
  17. Dunlap
    1. Greer, Stephen: a wide range of state and federal criminal charges, including the following: * Drug Offenses: Our criminal defense lawyer will defend you against state and federal drug charges involving drug possession, drug trafficking (selling or dealing drugs), drug manufacturing (such as meth) and drug cultivation (such as marijuana). We also defend against selling or possessing narcotics such as heroin, cocaine and prescription pain relievers. * Homicide, Murder and Violent Crimes: We defend individuals charged with homicide, manslaughter and murder, as well as attempted murder. We have successfully defended hundreds of cases involving homicides and assault. * White Collar Crime: Steve Greer has had a vast amount of experience representing individuals charged with state and federal white collar crime, including embezzlement, fraud, money laundering and other white collar crimes. We also defend individuals charged with: * Theft crimes * Sex crimes * Assault and domestic violence * Weapons and gun charges
  18. East Ridge
    1. Hanzelik, Ryan: DUI and Implied Consent Drug Offenses (see example below) Drug Charges Thrown Out For Foursome On Way To Bonaroo Domestic Assault Robbery Burglary Attempted Murder Murder
  19. Franklin
  20. Gallatin
    1. Garner, Patti: everyone is entitled to zealous representation and equal justice
  21. Germantown
  22. Goodlettsville
  23. Greenville
    1. Ricker Law Office: Federal Criminal Charges: * Drug conspiracy • Trafficking • Manufacturing * Weapons charges • Firearms possession * Robbery • Habeas corpus • White collar crimes * Fraud • Embezzlement • Counterfeiting State Criminal Charges: * Murder / homicide • Robbery • Burglary • Theft * Drug possession • Narcotics sales • Intent to sell * Distribution • Drunk driving (DUI) • Sex crimes * Kidnapping • Rape • Assault • Juvenile charges * Post-conviction Traffic Violations: * Speeding tickets • Moving violations * Non-moving violations * Failure to obey traffic signals Family Law: * Divorce • Child custody • Child support • Visitation * Mediation • Spousal support • Alimony Wills and Estate: * Wills • Powers of attorney • Advanced care plan * Appointment of healthcare agent • Probate
  24. Hermitage
    1. Egan Law Firm: The police often make mistakes that violate your constitutional rights. Law enforcement officials may lack probable cause to make a traffic stop. Field sobriety tests and Breathalyzer exams may be incorrectly administered.
  25. Hendersonville
    1. Mumford, Roland: Criminal Law is the name given to the branch of law that governs an individual's relationship to the state. It includes the definitions of criminal offenses, which are usually established by Congress or state legislatures. The term "criminal law" also encompasses the rights of an accused and the criminal process, including arrest, arraignment, grand juries, pleas, discovery, pretrial hearings, trials, jury selection, evidence, motions, and posttrial remedies. The main purpose of the criminal law is to set forth the punishment for criminal offenses. In order to prove any crime, no matter how serious, the prosecutor must prove that the accused committed a guilty act with a guilty mind beyond a reasonable doubt. STOP You may be stopped for questioning by the police. A stop is not the same as an arrest because, although you may be detained, you aren't moved to a different location. During a stop the police officer may ask you questions, but you have the right to refuse to answer. SEARCH Search Warrants: A search warrant authorizes police to conduct a search of a specific place, such as your residence. In order for a warrant to be issued by a judge, "probable cause" is necessary. Probable cause to search means that: * It is more likely than not that the specific items to be searched for are connected with criminal activities * Those items will be found in the place to be searched Warrantless Searches: The general rule is that warrants are required for searches. But search warrants are not required for the following: * Searches incident to arrest: Police officers are permitted to search your body and/or clothing for weapons or other contraband when making a valid arrest. * Automobile searches: If you're arrested in a vehicle, the police may search the inside of the vehicle. To perform a complete search of the vehicle (such as in locked glove compartments, for example), probable cause is necessary. * Exigent circumstances: Searches may be conducted if there are "exigent circumstances" which demand immediate action, such as to avoid the destruction of evidence. * Plain view: Police do not need a search warrant when they see an object that is in plain view of an officer who has the right to be in the position to have that view. * Consent: If you consent to a search of your body, your vehicle, or your home, police are not required to have a warrant. You aren't required to consent to any police searches. ARREST In order to be arrested, there must be what's called "probable cause." This means that there must be a reasonable belief that a crime was committed and you committed the crime. An arrest warrant is not necessary. After you're placed under arrest, you are protected by constitutional rights. Two important rights to be aware of are the right to remain silent and the right to have an attorney. After your arrest, you aren't required to say anything else to police or investigators, until you have an attorney present. You must be given the opportunity to contact an attorney. BOOKING After you're arrested, the police will bring you to the police station for the booking process. You'll be fingerprinted and asked a series of questions, such as your name and date of birth. You'll also be searched and photographed. Your personal property such as jewelry will be catalogued and stored. ARRAIGNMENT Once criminal charges are filed, you'll make a court appearance that is known as an "arraignment." If you're incarcerated, this will usually occur within 72 hours of your arrest. During your arraignment, you'll be asked to enter a "plea" to the crime you've been charged with. Possible pleas are: * Guilty plea: If you plead "guilty," you're admitting to the facts of the crime and the fact that you were the one who committed that crime. * Not guilty plea: A "not guilty" plea asserts that you did not commit the crime with which you were accused. After your plea, a pre-trial or trial date will be set. * Nolo contendere: A "nolo contendere" or "no contest" plea indicates that, while you are not admitting guilt, you do not dispute the charge. This is preferable to a guilty plea because guilty pleas can be used against you in later civil lawsuits. If you plead "guilty" or "nolo contendere," there will not be a trial. You'll then be sentenced. During the arraignment, the court will also: * Set bail * Refuse to set bail; or * Release you on your own personal recognizance, which means that the court takes your word that you will appear when necessary for later court obligations BAIL/BOND Bail is money or property put forth as security to ensure that you'll show up for further criminal proceedings. Bail can be paid: * In cash * A pledge of property (if permitted in that court) * A bail bond A professional bail bondsman is an individual whose business is to pledge his or her own property or security to guarantee the bail bond to the court. SPEEDY TRIAL You have a right to a speedy trial under the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution, which requires that trials be held within a certain time frame after a person has been charged with a crime. This right can be waived by asking for additional time for the preparation of your defense. Speedy Trial rights in Tennessee A court uses a balancing test in Tennessee to determine whether your right to a speedy trial was denied. The following four factors are weighed: * Length of the delay * Your assertion of your right to a speedy trial * Reason for the delay * Prejudice to you because of the delay TRIAL Many prosecutors will consider "plea agreements," although it's not legally required. If you don't reach a plea agreement with the prosecutor, your proceedings will move toward the trial stage. Usually, if you are charged with a crime punishable by six or more months of imprisonment, you have the right to a jury trial. This right may be waived by: * Pleading guilty; or * Choosing a bench trial (a trial in front of a judge only) If you request a bench trial, the judge will perform the fact-finding function that is usually performed by the jury. APPEALS After conviction and sentencing, you have the opportunity to file an appeal of your sentence. If you were convicted based on a guilty plea, you may need to ask for "leave" or permission to appeal your conviction. If you were convicted after a trial, you have an absolute right to appeal. An appeal is not a retrial of the case, but it is an examination of the trial record to ensure that the proceedings were conducted in a fair manner. This process varies depending upon the crime, but there are always time deadlines by which you must file an appeal. There are numerous reasons for an appeal from a guilty verdict in a criminal case, including what's called "legal error." Legal error may include: * Allowing inadmissible evidence during the criminal process, including evidence that was obtained in violation of your constitutional rights * Lack of sufficient evidence to support a verdict of guilty * Mistakes in the judge's instructions to the jury regarding your case You may also appeal due to misconduct on behalf of the jurors, or you may appeal if there is newly discovered evidence to exonerate you.
  26. Jackson
  27. Jamestown
    1. Potter, Thomas: DUI – DWI Drug offenses Felonies and misdemeanors Wills and estates
  28. Jefferson City
    1. Justice, Scott: The Law Tennessee DUI law is principally governed by Tenn. Code Ann. 55-10-401. Driving under the influence of intoxicant, drug or drug producing stimulant prohibited - Alcohol concentration in blood or breath. (a) It is unlawful for any person to drive or to be in physical control of any automobile or other motor driven vehicle on any of the public roads and highways of the state, or on any streets or alleys, or while on the premises of any shopping center, trailer park or any apartment house complex, or any other premises which is generally frequented by the public at large, while: (1) Under the influence of any intoxicant, marijuana, narcotic drug, or drug producing stimulating effects on the central nervous system; or (2) The alcohol concentration in such person's blood or breath is eight-hundredths of one percent (.08 %) or more. (b) For the purpose of this section, "drug producing stimulating effects on the central nervous system" includes the salts of barbituric acid, also known as malonyl urea, or any compound, derivatives, or mixtures thereof that may be used for producing hypnotic or somnifacient effects, and includes amphetamine, desoxyephedrine or compounds or mixtures thereof, including all derivatives of phenolethylamine or any of the salts thereof, except preparations intended for use in the nose and unfit for internal use.
  29. Johnson City
    1. Lonon, James: Accidents Bankruptcy Custody Divorce DUI/DWI Injuries Property Damage Wrongful Death
    2. Corker, Clifton: dwi, dui, owi, oui
    3. Scott Pratt: A DUI conviction has serious consequences including jail time and the loss of your driving privileges.
  30. Kingsport
    1. Williams, Jim: It is illegal to drive in Tennessee or Virginia with a blood alcohol level of .08 or greater, or while ones driving is impaired by alcohol or illegal or prescription drugs. In Tennessee and Virginia, there is an implied consent (you agree to it when you sign for your drivers license) to submit to a breathalyzer or or blood test when a police officer has probable cause to believe that your driving is impaired due to drugs or alcohol. That means if a police officer has lawful grounds to stop you and probable cause to believe you are impaired or over the legal limit (usually an odor of alcohol will be all that it takes) the officer can ask you to submit to a blood-alcohol test. Refusing a breath or blood test can result in the loss of your license even if you are later found not guilty of DUI or DWI.
    2. Parker, John: Criminal Law & Civil Law * Auto Accidents - Personal Injury And Death Cases * Workers Compensation * Social Security * Divorce & Custody * Wills & Estates * All Federal Courts - Criminal/Civil * DUI * Medical Malpractice * Title Examination & Closings
  31. Knoxville
  32. La Vergne
    1. Frazier, Charles: DUI (Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs) Traffic Violations Theft Crimes Drug Crimes Sex Crimes Violent Crimes Domestic Violence Juvenile Crime Burglary Assault/Battery "White Collar" Crime Bond Reductions Sentence Reductions Early Discharges from Probation/Parole Criminal Investigations (Charges Not Yet Filed)
  33. Lebanon
  34. Manchester
    1. Burch, Eric: Personal Injury Wrongful Death Workers Compensation Divorce Child Custody Criminal Defense DUI and Narcotics
  35. Maryville
  36. Morristown
    1. Harrison, Eric: * Assaults * Robbery * Drug possession charges * DUI or drunk driving charges
    2. Evans & Beier: any type of crime, from misdemeanor theft to DUI to felony assault
  37. Mount Juliet
    1. Salam, Quincy: * Business & Commercial Law * Business Organizations * DUI/DWI * Estate Planning * Wills * Living Wills * Spendthrift Trusts * Revocable /Irrevocable Trusts * Powers of Attorney (Durable and Health Care) * Divorce * Child Custody, Support & Modification * Mediation
  38. Memphis
  39. Millington
    1. Lewis, Paul: Challenging a DUI arrest is often a matter of comparing the police officer's impressions with hard evidence such as the arrest video and the jail intake physical. When the officer reports that you were obviously impaired according to the field sobriety test, but the other evidence indicates you were fine, the state has to prove that the video or jailer is wrong. Often, these cases are dropped. Another common mistake that can lead to dismissed charges occurs when police officers make use of nonstandard field sobriety tests. If you were charged with DUI based on an invalid test — reciting the alphabet backward, touching your nose, counting backwards, or counting on your fingers, for example — call DUI (a) defense lawyer ...
  40. Murfreesboro
  41. Nashville
  42. Nashville
  43. Nashville
  44. Nashville
  45. Nashville
  46. Nashville
  47. Newport
    1. Whitson, John: 20% Car / Auto Accident 20% Divorce / Separation 20% Child Custody 20% Criminal Defense 10% Probate 5% DUI / DWI 5% Wills / Living Wills
  48. Paris
    1. Hawley & McCadams: Personal Injury Auto Accidents Wrongful Death Social Security Disability All Other Injuries Criminal Defense Felonies & Misdemeanors DUI Drug Charges Probation Violations Appeals Juvenile Bankruptcy Business Personal Family Law Divorce Child Custody & Visitation Child Support Name Change Adoption Dependency & Neglect Paternity Actions Conservatorship Estate Law Probate Wills Power of Attorneys Living Wills Business Law Contracts Collections Corporate Formation Acquisitions Negotiations
    2. Ainley, Hoover, Clark & Hoover: Automobile Accidents Criminal Defense Family Law Injury Law Spinal Cord Injury Traumatic Brain Injury Toxic Molds Medical Malpractice Wrongful Death Insurance Bad Faith Nursing Home Abuse Airplane Accidents Dog Bites Drunk Drivers Large Truck Cases Motorcycle Accidents School Bus Accidents Slip and Fall Tennessee Resources Statute of Limitations And More!
  49. Pigeon Forge
    1. Farmer, Andrew: Domestic violence Assault & battery Sexual assault Theft Burglary Conspiracy Fraud Embezzlement Forgery Gambling Obstruction of Justice Indecent exposure Gambling Solicitation Aggravated assault Credit card theft Bad checks Concealed weapon White-collar Manslaughter Homicide Burglary Kidnapping Shoplifting Domestic violence Hit & run Nonpayment of child support Rape Prostitution Molestation Resisting arrest Motor vehicle theft Stalking Receiving stolen property Counterfeit currency Possession of dangerous weapon Felony possession of firearms
  50. Red Bank
    1. Johnny Houston: A DUI conviction is a criminal conviction that remains on a person's criminal record forever. The "costs" of a conviction include but are not limited to: 1.) Increased automobile insurance costs, five years in most cases; 2.) Job opportunity implications - many employers are now denying employment to persons with alcohol related driving convictions; 3.) Restricted or NO driving privileges; 4.) Facing multiple offense sanctions if convicted again; 5.) If a college student, disciplinary action by the school.
  51. Russellville
    1. Brooks & Hendricks: Probate & Estate Planning Civil & Business Litigation Criminal & Traffic Family Law
  52. Sevierville
  53. Shelbyville
    1. Reeves Law Firm: personal injury, medical malpractice, workers’ compensation, family law, wills, probate, estate planning, real estate, business law, criminal law, and health care law
  54. Smyrna
    1. Gourley, Jeremy: Drug Crimes, Aggravated Assault, Traffic Violations, Domestic Violence, Probation Violations, Assault and Battery, Child Support, Contempt of Court, DUI/DWI, Burglary, Felonies, Forgery, Juvenile Delinquency, General Sessions Court, Rutherford County, Williamson County, Davidson County, Wilson County, Smyrna, Franklin, Nashville, Murfreesboro, Lebanon
    2. Bolin, Imogene: real estate, wills and estates, family law, business law, personal injury, bankruptcy and criminal defense
    3. Brandon, Joe: A conviction on a drunk driving charge can have serious consequences, including the loss of your license, fines, jail time, probation and community service. In addition, the increased insurance premiums that result from a Driving Under the Influence (DUI) conviction can cost you thousands of dollars. If you are facing charges for any kind of impaired driving offense, be sure that you have an experienced Murfreesboro and Nashville DUI attorney who will fight for your rights.
    4. George, Foster & King: * Drunk driving (DUI/underage DUI) * Drug possession * Assault * Domestic violence * Theft * Probation violations * Expungements
  55. South Nashville
    1. Jennifer Thompson: What Does It Mean To Be Charged With A Crime? When you are charged with a crime, someone has accused you of breaking the law. Criminal charges can start three different ways: • You can be arrested at the scene of the alleged crime by the police; • You can be arrested later based on a warrant issued after someone, either private citizen or police officer, has sworn before a judge that you have committed a crime; or • You can be arrested based on an indictment from the grand jury. This "direct presentment" is the result from an investigation through the District Attorney's office. Regardless of how the charges begin, there must be enough evidence that, an average person, once they hear the facts, would believe that there is a reasonable chance that you have committed a crime. This is called "probable cause." What Is General Sessions Court? In criminal matters, general sessions court is where most cases begin. Anyone who was arrested at the scene of a crime or was arrested based on someone's sworn statement will come to this court first. There is never a jury for cases in general sessions court. General sessions court is not "a court of record." This means that when you appeal a trial from this court, you start over fresh with a new trial in criminal court. There is no court reporter, but everything is audio taped. Most criminal cases in general sessions court are not set for trial but instead are set for preliminary hearings. The law treats felony and misdemeanor cases differently in general sessions court. What Can Happen To A Misdemeanor Case In General Sessions Court? General sessions judges can "try" (as in have a trial) cases, if they are misdemeanors, but only if the defendant and district attorney agree to "waive a jury trial." If the case is tried in general sessions court, then the guilt of the defendant is decided at this level and the case does not continue on to the grand jury. The result is that the defendant waives his right to have his case heard by the Grand Jury. Defendants can plead guilty to misdemeanor charges in general sessions courts and judges can sentence people on these charges. The district attorney can always dismiss charges. The judge can have a preliminary hearing on misdemeanor charges in general sessions court. But, most misdemeanor cases are disposed of (there is a trial, guilty plea, or they are dropped) in general sessions court unless they are related to felony charges. What Can Happen To A Felony Case In General Sessions Court? You cannot have a trial or plead guilty to felony charges in general sessions court. Most felony cases are set for a preliminary hearing. The district attorney dismisses a small number. It is possible to reach a plea agreement with the district attorney in general session court and "by-pass" the grand jury. This is called a "criminal information." Pleading guilty to a "criminal information" waves several important rights of the defendant (the right to a preliminary hearing and the right to a grand jury). This is not usually a good idea, but there are a few times when it can benefit the defendant. This is one example of when it is a good idea to plead guilty to a criminal information. When a defendant cannot make his bond he must wait in jail from the time the case is bound over to the grand jury and the time it is transferred to criminal court. This wait will be somewhere between four and six months. If a defendant is offered a jail sentence of less than four months then is can be a good idea to plead guilty to a criminal information. A criminal information is a three-part process and takes about a month. The first step is for the defendant to waive his preliminary hearing in general session court and to sign a written agreement stating what crimes he is pleading guilty to and what the sentence will be for the crimes. The second step is for the district attorney to draft a formal statement of the charges, called an information. This information takes the place of the grand jury indictment. The third step is for the defendant to go to criminal court. If the judge agrees with the plea-bargain, then the defendant can plead guilty to the charges and receive his sentence from the judge. What Is A Preliminary Hearing? A preliminary hearing, or probable-cause hearing, is the court hearing where the state must prove that it has "probable cause" to believe that you have committed a crime. These hearings take place in the general sessions courts. In Davidson County, this means that they will usually be held on the third floor of the courthouse or in the small courtroom at the Criminal Justice Center. Occasionally, general sessions court for domestic cases (husband/wife, boyfriend/girlfriend, parent/child) will be held in the Ben West Building. At the preliminary hearing, the judge will decide whether there is enough evidence to believe that there is a "reasonable" chance you have committed a crime. This is a different type of hearing than a trial, where the judge is deciding whether you are guilty of a crime. It is much easier to find that there is a chance you committed a crime so the "standard of proof" is very low. If the judge decides that there is a chance you have committed a crime, your case will be "bound over" to the grand jury. If the judge decides that there is not enough evidence to believe that you may have committed a crime the case is dismissed. If the case is dismissed at this point, the district attorney can still take your case to the grand jury. A dismissal of your case at this stage does not mean your case has ended. It might still come back up. If it does, you will be notified that there is an indictment against you. You may be arrested on the indictment and have to pay a new bond. What Is An Arraignment? If you have been charged with a crime, your first appearance in court before a judge is usually your arraignment. This is when your charges are read and you enter your first plea. Arraignments in criminal court are usually held on Wednesday mornings. When it is your turn to be arraigned, your name will be called. If you have hired an attorney, your attorney will answer for you. You and your attorney will stand up before the judge. The judge will give your attorney a copy of your "indictment" from the grand jury and a schedule of your next few court appearances. Your attorney will enter a "not guilty" plea for you. He will also tell the judge your birth date and social security number. The arraignment takes about five minuets. If you cannot afford an attorney, you must fill out an "affidavit of indigency." Even if you were appointed an attorney (public defender or private) in general sessions court, you must be re-appointed an attorney in criminal court. The public defender's office is always in court, but you must call your private attorney to tell him about the arraignment date.
  56. Springfield
    1. Holt & Kroeger: Civil Divorce Custody Child Support Personal Injuries Auto Accidents Contract Matters Collections Wills and Estates Criminal DUI Traffic Offenses Misdemeanors Felonies Assault Cases Probation and Parole Violations Expungements
    2. Wilkes, Larry: Criminal defense, from drunk driving (DUI) and drug charges to capital murder cases
  57. Spring Hill
    1. Tull Law Firm: As everyone is aware, DUI/DWI is one of the nation's biggest problems. Where other criminal acts usually involve individuals who choose a particular lifestyle, DUI/DWI hits men and women who have never even considered committing a crime. Given the fact that DUI/DWI charges happens to persons from all walks of life, it effects many others when a breadwinner is lost to jail, can no longer get certain jobs, will be away from their children for long periods of time - DUI/DWI can and does ruin lives; both directly and indirectly. In reality, DUI/DWI is a very easy to convict crime. The tools to measure intoxication/drug use are readily available and the symptoms are easy to spot for the trained police officer. However, there are technical errors that surround the process that can sometimes be used to lessen the charge or in a few cases, have the charge dismissed. The process of evaluating each case is similar but time consuming and often center on whether the individual's rights have been violated or if there was a breakdown in the various systems used to make the state's case. These are difficult cases to win and even a partial victory should be considered a win.
  58. Trenton
    1. Jeffrey Smith: The determination fo the need for legal services and the choice of a lawyer are extremely important decisions and should not be based solely upon advertisements, certification, specialization or self-proclaimed expertise.
  59. Tullahoma
    1. Morrison & Bunn: * Bankruptcy - Chapter 7 (Debt Discharge) or Chapter 13 (Debt Consolidation) * Social Security Disability (SSDI) * Workers' Compensation * Personal Injury - Car and Truck Accidents * Criminal Law * Divorce and Family Law
  60. Unknown
    1. Goodwin, Amy: Criminal Defense - DUI - Juvenile Justice - Criminal Defense - DUI - Juvenile Justice - Criminal Defense - DUI - Juvenile Justice
    2. Ryan, Ed: Why fight my case? If you go to court and plead guilty to a DUI, there is a 100% chance that the judge will find you guilty of DUI, and a 100% chance you will have a DUI conviction on your permanent criminal record. If you plead guilty, you are guaranteed to suffer every consequence the court wants to impose. However, fighting your case means that a lawyer will do everything possible to positively affect the outcome. Fighting your case means that the prosecutor may not be able to get all the witnesses or evidence he needs to convict you. Fighting your case means you have a chance. There are significant legal reasons to fight your case. Perhaps the officer didn’t have a valid legal reason for stopping you in the first place, and the evidence gathered is suppressed. Perhaps the breath machine is out of calibration, and your .09 is really a 07. Perhaps the blood sample is clotted or fermented, and produces a falsely high reading. These things will only be known if the case is fought. And even in those cases where the BAC is accurate, and reads .08 or higher after you were stopped, what does that mean about the time of driving. It is not illegal to be .08 at the time of the Breath Test; the crime is driving above the legal limit. It is quite possible (even probable) that someone with a BAC above the legal limit at the time of testing was below the legal limit at the time of driving. This is due to the inherent delay in absorption, distribution and elimination of alcohol in the human body. These things will never be explored, unless you fight your case. There are emotional reasons too. As any boxer will tell you, it is better to go down swinging than to back down from a fight. Shrinking from battle, whether in the courtroom or elsewhere in life, can bring emotional wounds that are far more hurtful than anything the judge can do to you. Sometimes it is important to fight, just so you know you have done everything in your power to help the situation. To not do so is to carry emotional baggage for a lifetime.
    3. Mills & Wagner: My Lawyer has told me not to talk to anyone about my case, not to answer questions, and not to reply to accusations. Call my lawyer if you want to ask me questions, search me or my property, do any tests, do any lineups, or any other identifications procedures. I do not agree to any of these things without my lawyer present and I do not want to waive any of my constitutional rights.
  61. Yelverton
    1. Leintner, Williams, Dooley & Napolotan: Asbestos litigation Automotive liability Constitutional law Consumer law Contract law Corporate and Business Criminal law Drug and Medical Device Education law Family law Fidelity and surety Government liability Life, health and disability Mold litigation Municipal liability Negligence defense
A directory of sites maintained by Jim Forslund, a DUI defense attorney in Colorado. Links checked weekly. Mail proposed additions to RECIPROCAL LINKS APPRECIATED