It may sound like a funny question – can you actually get a DUI on a bicycle? It’s actually not as funny as you may think. In many states, it’s just as illegal to ride your bike while under the influence as it is a car.
The DUI laws are different in every state. In Georgia, you technically can’t be convicted of DUI for riding your bike while intoxicated. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t be arrested. Many people in Atlanta actually are arrested for riding their bikes while being high or drunk.
DUI lawyers in Atlanta represent plenty of people who are arrested and charged with DUI. Some of these clients were riding their bikes at the time of their arrest. Thankfully, your Atlanta DUI defense lawyer can usually get these charges dismissed. However, that isn’t always the case.
Here, we’ll discuss the rationale behind why certain bicycles are indeed subject to the DUI laws in Georgia. We’ll also talk about how an experienced DUI lawyer in Atlanta can get your charges reduced or dismissed.
The Purpose of DUI Laws
What a lot of people don’t realize is that DUI laws aren’t meant to punish people. They’re meant to protect people. Law enforcement and the legislature want to make sure pedestrians and motorists are safe while on the road.
People who drink and drive risk the safety of themselves and others. They make bad decisions and people get hurt. In order to deter this kind of behavior, the legislatures put laws in place to penalize drunk driving.
If you think about it, if the purpose of the law is to protect people, it shouldn’t matter what you’re driving. However, even the lawmakers used a bit of common sense when writing the DUI laws in Georgia. It’s not foreseeable that someone riding their bicycle could cause a multi-car accident. Nor is it likely that they could crash into a car and injure the passengers inside.
This is why the Georgia DUI statute specifically refers to motorized vehicles when it comes to driving drunk. What this means is that you can actually be arrested for DUI if you’re driving a certain kind of bike.
You Can Be Charged for DUI on a Moped or Scooter
While the law may not apply to people on bicycles, it does apply to people on things like mopeds and scooters. Bicycles come without any sort of a motor. Once you decide to install a motor on a bicycle, it becomes a vehicle for purposes of DUI.
If you’re driving a moped or motorized scooter, you can absolutely be arrested and charged with DUI in Atlanta. Your Atlanta DUI lawyer will argue that your bike is not a vehicle and that the charges must be dropped. Sometimes, this may work. However, once you put a motor on your bike, you’re subject to the same penalties as someone driving a car.
Can I Get a DUI on a Bicycle?
Just because the law says your bike has to motorized to be charged with DUI doesn’t mean you can’t be arrested. People are often arrested in Atlanta for DUI on a bicycle.
If this happens to you, contact an experienced DUI attorney in Georgia. There’s a really good chance they can get these charges dismissed. Once they prove that your bike isn’t motorized, the charges should be dropped.
However, what if your arrest leads to other charges? Imagine you’re pulled over for DUI on your bicycle. You happen to have marijuana in your pocket. When the police arrest you, they search your pockets. They also find a small pocket knife you forgot was there. Now, you’ll be charged with drug possession and possession of a weapon. What happens to these charges if the DUI is dismissed?
Your Atlanta DUI defense lawyer will speak to the prosecutor about these other charges. They will try to get them dismissed. If the prosecutor refuses, your attorney will represent you in court. They’ll argue that, since these charges were the result of an unlawful arrest, they must be dismissed.
Contact an Experienced DUI Lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia
If you’ve been arrested for DUI and think the charges were unlawful, you have a problem. Sure, you can go to court and ask the prosecutor to dismiss the charges. However, you don’t know the law. There’s a good chance the charges will stick.
An experienced DUI attorney in Atlanta knows the law. They also know how to deal with the prosecutor. Call the Howard Law Group today and schedule your initial consultation.