Story Telling in Savannah DUI Case

Question: Why is being a good storyteller important in defending a DUI case in Georgia?

Answer: Being a great storyteller is certainly a pro with a jury. I always like to think of jurors as I would if my parents were in for jury duty. My parents have no interest whatsoever in being there, they’ve got other stuff going on, they don’t care about the court system any more than they see on TV and they want to get out. So it’s not important to some of these jurors what’s going on. It doesn’t matter how much the judge preaches to them or reads the law, people have other lives. So it’s important to get somebody that’s comfortable and can make it kind of a storytelling thing. And what I do with juries is just treat them just like the common, everyday citizens that they are. And tell them what happened. Don’t just parade the facts in front of them like the state’s going to do and just make it look like such a cold case. But open up. I tell them about my client; I tell them about their background, I introduce them to their families, who are often in the courtroom. I give them a little bit of background so they’re not looking at a defendant, they’re looking at an individual. And then I walk through everything the officer did in a story fashion and everything that lead up to the stop and the arrest and everything that lead up to why we’re in court in the first place. So that at the end of the trial I’m able to talk to the jury and paint the picture for them and show them that instead of looking at a defendant, they’ve got an individual; they’ve got a human being with a lot on the line here. Someone who has a good family, someone that has a great future, a good job. That storytelling is the way that we defend against DUIs. That’s something that the state is not going to do and that’s something that an ineffective attorney, especially a DUI attorney, is going to have a real problem with.

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