According to a Whitfield County Sheriff’s Office incident report, On February 11th, 2023, at 4:41 hours, Deputy Dennison was patrolling the area of Waring Road and Poplar Springs Road. Deputy Dennison observed a vehicle with a headlight that was not functioning and observed it fail to maintain its lane and travel at a high rate of speed. Deputy Dennison initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle and made contact with the driver, who was later identified as Andres Maciel Hernandez, 23, of Dalton. According to the report, “Deputy Dennison immediately noticed the strong odor of an alcoholic beverage emitting from the vehicle. Deputy Dennison asked Mr. Hernandez why the vehicle smelled like an alcoholic beverage, and he stated that his friends had been drinking in his vehicle the day prior and possibly spilled some. Mr. Hernandez advised Deputy Dennison that he did not have any alcoholic beverages to drink prior to driving. Deputy Dennison asked Mr. Hernandez if he would do a PBT (Preliminary Breath Test). Mr. Hernandez said that he would not perform the PBT, but he would perform SFST (Standardized Field Sobriety Testing). Upon running Mr. Hernandez, Deputy Dennison observed that he was on probation. Deputy Dennison had dispatch contact Mr. Hernandez’s probation officer. Mr. Hernandez’s probation officer advised Deputy Dennison that Mr. Hernandez had a 4th amendment waiver.” After Hernandez exited the vehicle, Deputy Dennison and Deputy McClure could smell the strong odor of an alcoholic beverage emitting from his breath. Hernandez was also slurring his speech while talking. Hernandez then stated that he had approximately 3 to 4 alcoholic beverages prior to driving. Deputy Dennison searched Hernandez’s vehicle and located marijuana and an open container. During field sobriety exams, Hernandez showed several signs of impairment and was taken into custody for DUI. Hernandez was transported to the Whitfield County Jail, where he refused the state test. Hernandez was charged with DUI alcohol less safe, open container violation, failure to maintain lane, headlight violation, and for tint violation.
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