For months you have had to ditch your phone while you drive or risk getting a ticket. Information about the new Georgia Hands Free Law littered headlines around the time it took effect on July 1st. After 5 months of enforcement of the new law, we checked in with law enforcement for an update.
Corporal Dustin Stone leads the 5 county Grovetown post for Georgia State Patrol. On Thursday, he invited NewsChannel 6’s Ashley Osborne to ride in his patrol car as he enforced the hands free law. Cpl. Stone says the top things he looks for are DUI, speeding, seat belt use and distracted driving.
“I usually put… they had their right hand up to their right ear,” Cpl Stone says about how he marks the citations. “That way later if it goes to court, I can remember what I saw.”
However, Cpl Stone has not been to court yet because people just pay the ticket ahead of time. For the first offense, you can dodge the $50 fine if you go to court and show the judge you took steps to follow the law.
“If you go to court and prove that you purchased some kind of device to abide by the law—a Bluetooth device, some kind of device to make you to be hands free, then there will usually be no fine on the first offense,” Cpl. Stone explains.