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Georgia man up on DUI charges after collision with police cruiser

A man is in custody in the Polk County Jail following a collision with a sheriff's office vehicle that police believe may have been predicated on drunk driving. The 28-year-old Georgia man's vehicle reportedly collided with a patrol car, leading police to believe he was intoxicated. He is now facing DUI charges, though no court date has yet been announced. 

According to sheriff's officers, the man was driving around 11 p.m. the night of Sept. 18 when the collision occurred. A patrol car taking part in a relief convoy bound for Florida was blocking an intersection to allow the convoy to pass,when it was reportedly struck by the man's vehicle. The man then apparently fled the scene, though neither he nor the deputy in the other vehicle were injured. 

The man told officers he initially pulled into a parking lot to call and notify police of the crash, but then decided against it. He also told police he had only had a couple of beers, though a subsequent blood test revealed a blood alcohol level of .121 percent, beyond the legal limit of 0.08. The man was charged with DUI and taken to jail. 

The difficulty with prosecuting DUI charges often lies in the testing mechanisms used to determine intoxication by blood alcohol level. Depending on when the test is taken, and how it is administered, false positives are common, particularly if the alcohol (if consumed in the first place) has had additional time to metabolize within the body. Georgia prosecutors will have to prove the man was drunk at the time of the collision in order to secure a conviction. Defense representation will likely carefully examine the results of the test, along with a full transcript of the arrest procedure. 

Source: theledger.com, "Collision with Georgia Sheriff's car yields DUI charge for Dundee man", Gary White, Sept. 19, 2017

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