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Atlanta Criminal Defense Lawyers > Blog > In the News > Accountability Courts in Georgia

Accountability Courts in Georgia

Hardcore DUI offenders, or those who are caught driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.15 percent or higher, are being targeted by accountability courts in Georgia and around the country. Also included are those people who have been caught drinking and driving multiple times.

Athens, Georgia is home to an academy court that is serving as a national model. Recently, the court hosted a special training program for court personnel and judges. The goal is to get to the root causes of drinking and driving instead of just punishing people with jail time and fines.

Current trends tell us that punishment is simply not enough to deter people from driving under the influence. Once the punishment has ended, the person’s addiction remains. Because of that addiction, these people are at a high risk of repeating the behavior. Said retired Judge Michael Kavanaugh, now the senior director of the National Center for DWI Courts:

“We try to redirect people who have been trained in the adversarial system into a system that now recognizes the source of some of the dysfunction and how to deal with the various and multiple sources of that dysfunction.”

One of the main features of the close to 700 DWI courts across the nation is teamwork. Each member of the legal process works together to identify a treatment program that will work for the unique defendant, and to help that defendant stay on track. Participants in the program are held accountable, but the teams work to preserve the dignity of the accused.

Some participants in the one to two year DWI program struggle at first, but many undergo transformations by the end of the program. The ultimate goal of the program is not punishment, but life changes. If a person can get and remain sober, they are less likely to drink and drive.

If you have been arrested for driving under the influence, your reputation, your personal life, and even your employment are at risk. Do not fight the courts without a competent, experienced attorney from Hawkins Spizman Fortas at your side. We have built an excellent reputation through our tireless efforts defending the rights and reputations of our clients. Reach out to our team today or visit our website for more information.

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