DUI & Criminal Defense

Passion. Experience. Diligence.

Our Approach

Kelly O. Henderson, Attorney at Law, has a substantial background defending clients accused of criminal offenses in LaGrange, Newnan, Franklin, Greenville, Hamilton, Carrollton and other communities in west Georgia and east Alabama. When you are facing criminal charges, it is important to protect your rights. This means not making any statements to the police that may hurt your case. This also means not pleading guilty because you think the evidence is stacked against you and the charges are not worth fighting. The most important thing you can do after a criminal arrest is to consult with the  experienced criminal defense attorney, Kelly O. Henderson: someone that you can trust with your case.

Kelly O. Henderson, Attorney at Law, can help you understand your rights, protect your rights, and most importantly, protect you. We will get involved immediately, getting in touch with the government agencies that are prosecuting your case to get answers and to give you peace of mind. We work with you personally throughout every stage of the process.

Our approach to criminal law is thorough, proactive, and collaborative. When building a criminal defense case, we carefully explore all aspects of the arrest to identify weaknesses in the prosecution’s case. We work to get cases dismissed even before they go to trial by identifying faulty evidence, errors in police procedure, and other violations of our clients’ rights.

We apply our proven defense strategy to a wide range of criminal law cases, including those involving:

  • DUI, including implied consent, underage drunk driving violations, DUI and felony DUI
  • Drug crimes, including drug investigation, drug possession, distribution, cultivation, manufacturing and trafficking
  • Serious felonies
  • Domestic violence, including spousal abuse or elder abuse
  • Juvenile defense, including misdemeanor property crimes, high school or college student crimes and serious felonies
  • Serious traffic violations, such as reckless driving or driving without a license
  • Probation or parole problems, involving new charges or technical violations
  • Theft offenses, including felony or misdemeanor charges of larceny, robbery, grand theft, shoplifting, grand theft auto or burglary
  • Credit card fraud, including bank fraud, forgery or identity theft
  • Federal crimes, including federal drug charges and federal fraud and white collar crimes
 

Get in touch

We at Ellis C. Smith Law offices know that finding the right attorney to represent you is a choice not to be taken lightly. That’s why we offer free consultations to walk you through your needs, the scope of your goals, and your budget.

Facing a DUI?

Possible DUI Defenses

Although it is never easy to beat a DUI charge in Georgia or Alabama, you probably have a stronger defense than you think. In order to expand your options for a positive outcome, our law office seeks to determine any procedural or civil rights violations, including:

  • Why did the arresting officer pull you over?
  • Was there a field sobriety test?
  • Was there probable cause to support the DUI arrest?
  • How was the blood test at the police station administered?
  • Are there inconsistencies between the police report and the criminal complaint?

There are hundreds of possible police errors, and they can add up to reduce your charges. Depending on the facts of your misdemeanor or felony DUI case, our DUI attorneys can concentrate on seeking a dismissal based on any violation of your constitutional rights or a reduction based on other errors or mistakes by law enforcement. Our Newnan DUI lawyers are also fully prepared to secure a victory by casting doubt on the evidence obtained against you.


What constitutes a DUI?

Georgia's driving under the influence (DUI) laws make it illegal for drivers of all ages to operate motor vehicles if they have blood alcohol concentration (BAC) percentages of:

  • 0.08% or higher, if they're 21 years old or older operating regular passenger vehicles.
  • 0.04% or higher, if they're operating commercial vehicles.
  • 0.02% or higher, if they're younger than 21 years old.

We've successfully defended clients charged with DUI in LaGrange, Newnan, Franklin, Greenville, Hamilton, Carrollton and other communities in west Georgia. 

DUI convictions stay on your driving record for the rest of your life.


Possible DUI Punishments

First DUI offense:

If this is your first DUI in Troup, Coweta, Heard, Merriwether, Harris, Carroll and other communities in Georgia, or if it’s been longer than 5 years since your last DUI, and there is no bodily injury or death resulting from the DUI, you will be charged with a misdemeanor and your minimum sentence could include:

  • $210 fine, may also be responsible for $1,000 in ordinary penalty assessments, plus additional DUI-only assessments for a total of approximately $1,800.
  • At sentencing, the judge may grant you time served, which is not guaranteed, but has the right to sentence you up to 12 months in jail. Please bare in mind that if your BAC was .08% or more, the law requires you to serve at least 24 hours in jail. (Ga. Code Ann. § 40-6-391(c)(1)(B) (2016).) 
  • Attendance and completion of a 20-hour DUI Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Program (“Risk Reduction Program”), costs range from $300-500
  • 40 hours of community service
  • Suspension of your driver's license for 12 months, possible early reinstatement if you present your Risk Reduction Program certificate and pay a $210 fee.
  • Suspended license for up to 1 year.
  • Possible imprisonment of up to 1 year.

Second dui Offense:

If this is your second DUI (within 5 years) in Troup, Coweta, Heard, Merriwether, Harris, Carroll and other communities in Georgia, and there is no bodily injury or death resulting from the DUI, you will be charged with a misdemeanor and your minimum sentence could include:

  • 18 months - 3 years of license suspension.
  • A $600 - $1,000 fine.
  • $210 fee for license reinstatement.
  • Attendance and completion of a 20-hour DUI Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Program (“Risk Reduction Program”), costs range from $300-500
  • Clinical evaluation and possible treatment.
  • At least 30 days of community service.
  • Minimum 48 hours in jail; possible sentence of 90 days to 1 year.
  • Possible interlock ignition device. This cost will be about $4000.00.
  • Possible limited driving permit. This depends on your BAC, implied consent, and whether you have an administrative suspended license.

Third (Or More) DUi Offense 

If this is your third DUI (within 5 years) in Troup, Coweta, Heard, Merriwether, Harris, Carroll and other communities in Georgia, and there is no bodily injury or death resulting from the DUI, the GA DMV gives you Habitual Violator (HV) status and revokes your license for 5 years and confiscates your license plate. Your minimum sentence could include:

  • A $1,000 - $5,000 fine.
  • $410 fee for license reinstatement.
  • At least 15 days in jail.
  • At least 30 days of mandatory community service.
  • DUI Alcohol or Drug Risk Reduction Program and all associated costs, costs range from $300-500
  • Clinical evaluation and treatment.
  • Possible interlock ignition device and limited driving permit after 2 years. This cost will be about $4000.00.
  • Your name, address, and photo published in your local newspaper (you must pay for this).