Georgia Criminal Defense Blog

Explanation of Warrant Applications in Georgia After Video of Restaurant Owner Assaulting Employee Goes Viral

Posted by Richard Lawson | May 23, 2018 | 0 Comments

Attorneys, Muwali Davis and Kayla Bumpus, are representing a former restaurant employee after she was fired after a video went viral on Facebook of the owner assaulting her after receiving a customer complaint.

Turner and her attorneys, have filed a warrant application, allowing her to seek charges against the owner in Gwinnett County. According to reports, Turner is seeking an arrest of the restaurant owner on charges of both battery in Georgia and assault in Georgia

As a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer, there are aspects of this case that I'd like to focus on in today's post. 

Warrant Application Hearing in Georgia

In Georgia, people used to be able to a magistrate and swear out a warrant. This only required a judge to believe someone's story or account of an event. If the judge believed the individual, then he or she would issue a warrant for arrest. 

Fortunately, now, today, we have a more concrete process. This is known as the Warrant Application Process in Georgia

Under Georgia Law, a citizen who wishes for another person to be arrested must file a warrant application (O.C.G.A §17-4-40). The cost to file an application for a warrant is a $20 fee for each person someone seeks to have arrested. The filing of the application must occur in the Magistrate Court of the county in which the crime occurred. 

However, if the crime involves domestic violence or a sex crime in Georgia, there is no fee to file the warrant application. Most counties encourage the applicant to contact the law enforcement agency where the crime occurred in order to obtain a police report before submitting a request for a warrant. 

If the police personally observe a crime, they can arrest for it. If not personally observed, they can arrest for a misdemeanor without a warrant, however, they need a warrant to arrest for a felony. 

After the warrant application process, there will be a Georgia Warrant Application Hearing. This is where all the parties will bring their evidence and witnesses to prove their sides of the story. 

The person seeking the warrant has the burden of presenting evidence and witnesses that support the issuance of a warrant. The person whose arrest is sought may also bring witnesses and present proof that there is no probable cause for arrest.

After the presentation of the evidence from both sides, the judge will decide whether there is enough evidence to make an arrest. If so, then a warrant will be issued at the hearing. 

Practice Note about Warrant Applications in Georgia

It is important for me to note that both parties have the right to seek legal representation for the warrant application hearing. Even though it is not required, the Georgia Criminal Justice System is not made for self-service. As you can see from the explanation above, the application process and the hearing will be much easier with legal representation from a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney.

If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime in Georgia, or if you or a loved one is involved in the warrant application process or are the defendant in a warrant application hearing, contact us today. Our lawyers have over 50 years of combined experience and can answer any question you may have along the way.

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Managing Partner at Lawson & Berry:


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