The Atlanta DUI News Blog

Troup County DUI/Drug Court Program Gives Addicts A Choice

A LaGrange Daily News article profiles repeat DUI offender Lee Mock, who faced the prospect of going to jail after his latest drunk driving arrest. He would have been locked up in most Georgia counties, but Troup County has a unique program designed to treat those with substance abuse problems.

Lee Mock is about to graduate from the drug and alcohol program he entered in lieu of going to jail and said it literally saved his life:

"It was either jail or enter the program... Who wants to go to jail?"

Unfortunately DUI offenders don't have that choice in Fulton County or other Atlanta-area counties. But skilled Atlanta DUI attorneys can often help their clients get a reasonably favorable outcome in court.

The program consists of meetings, counseling sessions, drug tests and community service hours. Lee Mock, who now believes his life is on the right track, didn't think jail would address his underlying addiction issues; and that's why Troup County Judge Jeannette L. Little initiated the program.

She said the intensive, 12-month program is not for everyone but specifically targets those "who are impacted by addictions" and who might not be helped by jail.

It also saves taxpayers money by freeing up space in county jail and in state prisons, according to the Judicial Council of Georgia. In fact, the state gave grants to the Judicial Council in 2002 to establish such programs across the state in order to provide more effective deterrents for chronic DUI violators.

Donald Wright, Troup County's drug court program coordinator, said the program -- while an alternative to jail -- is no walk in the park:

"We offer them a choice if they have met certain requirements, like if they have received three DUIs or get two in five years. They do have to wear the monitors, take random drug and alcohol tests, meet with probation officers, me, and other conditions."

Ask a Georgia DUI attorney whether or not your local court is considering a similar program.

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