Not all DUI charges in Columbus are the same. This is initially evident in that not everyone who receives a DUI in Columbus is charged under Ohio Revised Code section 4511.19. Some receive a ticket charging them with a violation of the Columbus City Code or an ordinance of a local suburb. While the difference for a client may be relatively minor (ex: Columbus’ code has a higher minimum fine), it is important to take note of differences as the laws change as it may have an impact on your case.
Whether you are charged under the Ohio Code or the Columbus City Code really depends on the arresting officer. If you are stopped for DUI by Columbus Police, you will receive a ticket for violating the city code, while a stop by a Franklin County Sheriff, Ohio State Highway Patrol, or Ohio State University Police will result in a charge under the Ohio statute.
Additionally, there are no less that 10 mayor’s courts in Franklin County, each having their own jurisdiction, police, and ordinances. Depending on prior convictions or other circumstances surrounding your arrest, you may be ordered to appear not in the larger Franklin County Municipal Court, but in a smaller mayor’s court facing a violation of a local ordinance.
In short, a DUI in Columbus can take many forms from the outset, but essentially is the same underlying charge requiring a skilled attorney to understand and defend. I represent clients for DUI in Columbus in the Franklin County Municipal Court and all local mayor’s courts.