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Paul Ghanouni

Can I still drive after being arrested for DUI?

As a criminal defense attorney who handles a lot of Driving Under the Influence (DUI) cases, I’ve had a lot of people ask me questions about DUIs over the last 14 years. The most common questions I get surround a person’s ability to drive. They include questions like: “Can I still drive after my DUI arrest?” “Will I automatically lose my license?” “Can I get a permit to drive to and from work?”

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Anna Ghanouni

Weapons at school: The potential criminal law impact on students

Many students do not realize the potential impacts of carelessly leaving a weapon in their pocket, backpack, or vehicle. This article is intended to focus on educating students and parents on situations where a student might violate the law, not to provide a full analysis of every scenario where carrying a weapon at a school would be allowed or not allowed.

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Anna Ghanouni

Shoplifting Charge: What can happen to you!

Often times people think that a person can only be guilty of shoplifting when leaving a store with something without paying for it, but that is not actually the case.

Legally, the offense of shoplifting is committed the moment a person picks up an item in a store with the intent to steal it. The most common question that people ask is, “How can they prove a person had the intent to steal it?”

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Anna Ghanouni

Common Halloween hazards can lead to criminal charges

Ghosts and goblins may not be the only hazards to watch out for this Halloween. The hunt for haunted grounds can lead to unexpected trouble.

Every October, many teens and young adults start looking for haunted grounds to go visit around Halloween. The problems that arise when looking for these locations usually fall into two categories: who the properties belong to, and the people they go with.

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Anna Ghanouni

Who can find out about your case, if dismissed?

When an adult (17 or older), who has been charged with a crime, has their case dismissed, one of the most common questions is: “who will know about this in the future?” or “what kinds of records will exist about this?”

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Anna Ghanouni

What every driver under 21 (and their parents) should know about Georgia traffic laws.

There is often a look of shock and surprise on an individual’s face when they find out that being convicted for a traffic offense they are charged with can lead to a suspension of their driver’s license. To know whether someone is likely to be at risk for a driver’s license suspension, there must be a determination of which one of three categories they are in. Those categories are based entirely on the age of the individual charged; they are seventeen-year-olds and under, eighteen-year-olds to twenty-year-olds, and those who are twenty-one and older.

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Barry Hixson

Teens & Terroristic Threats

While some people know that under Georgia law, threatening to commit a crime of violence is a crime, few of them realize that even making a threat with no intention or means to follow through can also be a crime in some instances. It is also a crime under Georgia law for a person to make a threat of violence in reckless disregard of the risk of:

• causing terror to another;
• evacuation of a building, place of assembly, or facility of public transportation; or
• otherwise causing a serious public inconvenience.

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Teen Sexting Potential Felony – Not Flirting

Teen Sexting: Potential Felony – Not Flirting

While teen sexting continues to increase in prevalence, many teens are unaware of the potential legal consequences of these acts. One step in helping to prevent these activities is appropriate education on the seriousness of these situations. While there are many areas to educate teens and other young people about on this topic, the focus of this article is on the potential criminal law consequences.

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Anna Ghanouni

Will I get in trouble for calling for help during an overdose?

As many people know, drug overdose deaths have continued to grow in Georgia as well as across the country. The Georgia legislature passed laws in 2014 to help save the lives of individuals who might experience a drug or alcohol overdose. However, these laws can only help save lives if everyone is aware of them.

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Anna Ghanouni

Handling a police interview

A common question that comes up in the criminal defense arena is what to do if the police or other law enforcement officers contact an individual to schedule an interview during a criminal investigation. The simple answer to this is not to schedule an interview without an attorney present. There are a number of reasons for this.

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Anna Ghanouni

Answering Criminal History Related Questions for Job and College Applications

One issue that people who have experienced a run-in with the law tend to encounter is how to honestly answer a job or college application. For the purposes of this article we are addressing run-ins with the law in Georgia after an individual turns 17 years old. Understanding how to answer the common questions requires the person to understand what happened with their particular case in two categories: 1) how was the person was charged; and 2) what were the results of those charges.

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Anna Ghanouni

What to expect when your juvenile teen gets charged with a crime

In Georgia, a young person who is charged with most crimes is treated as a juvenile if they are 16 years old and younger. These juvenile criminal cases are referred to as juvenile delinquency cases. Juvenile delinquency cases can track many different ways through our judicial system, but this article should serve as a guide for the typical path of a juvenile delinquency case.

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Anna Ghanouni

CBD Oil and Low THC Oil: Are they legal in Georgia?

Many locations are now offering to sell CBD or THC products, but this leaves many individuals questioning what is legal and what is not.

The first step to understanding the legality of these items is understanding how Georgia law defines them.

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Anna Ghanouni

A driver’s overview of the Hand’s-Free Georgia Act

The Hands-Free Georgia Act became effective July 1, 2018. While Georgia previously had laws against distracted driving and texting while driving, this law increased the restrictions regarding the use of certain devices while operating motor vehicles and increased the potential punishments for those violations. The new law has additional specific prohibitions for commercial vehicle drivers, but this article focuses on impacts of the law on non-commercial drivers while driving a motor vehicle on the public roadways of Georgia.

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Anna Ghanouni

Family Violence Act Offenses

One area of the criminal justice system that can often be confusing is the offenses that are alleged under Georgia’s Family Violence Act. The intention behind this legislation is to help protect victims of domestic violence and punish perpetrators of acts of domestic violence. This is certainly a noble endeavor. However, Family Violence Act (“FVA”) laws, which are sometimes referred to as Domestic Violence (“DV”) laws are broad in their written scope, and in their sweep, and can have unforeseen and lasting impacts both inside and outside of the criminal court process. People are often unaware of these potential impacts.

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Anna Ghanouni

But I thought it was just a ticket!

A common question that has come up recently is whether an offense is serious or not, when a person receives a ticket from the officer for the offense. Historically, officers would routinely arrest individuals charged with misdemeanor offenses like underage possession of alcohol, possession of marijuana, possession of drug-related objects, or shoplifting. However, some of our Cherokee County law enforcement agencies and some of our officers are now issuing individuals citations, instead of arresting individuals, for these and other offenses.

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Anna Ghanouni

Removing Youthful Mistakes from a Georgia Criminal History

There has been recent media coverage regarding projects to prevent criminal histories from affecting employment opportunities for individuals. This includes “Ban the Box” and other projects intended to help individuals who have a criminal history be able to get back in to the workforce and be productive members of society.

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Anna Ghanouni

Taking the Mystery Out of the Criminal Process

While criminal cases can track many different ways through our judicial system, this article explains the typical path of a criminal case.

Most criminal cases begin when an individual is arrested by a police officer. This arrest is based on the officer’s belief that there is evidence that the person committed a crime. The person arrested, who is called the defendant in the judicial system, is taken to jail.

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