Hampton Reckless Driving By Speed Charges

Reckless driving by speed in Hampton refers to driving 80 miles per hour anywhere in Hampton or more or going 20 miles per hour or more over whatever the posted speed limit is. This offense is a class 1 misdemeanor which means if you are convicted you could face up to 12 months in jail, a fine of up to $2,500, and a license suspension of up to 6 months. With that said, there are defenses available to help mitigate your offense in many cases. To learn more or discuss your case call and schedule a consultation with a Hampton reckless driving lawyer today.

Potential Defenses

There are not any good legal excuses for driving at those speeds, however, an attorney can mitigate the speed by offering evidence that shows that the driver has done a driver improvement course, their speedometer was incorrect at the time of the incident, or that the driver has a clean record aside from the one charge. Additionally, situations where there was an emergency may be a good legal excuse for driving at those speeds, but those excuses tend to be very rare.

Difference Between Excessive Speed and a Speeding Ticket

Reckless driving by speed is different from a speeding ticket because reckless driving is a higher level of charge. Speeding tickets are traffic impression which means they’re punishable by a fine and a license suspension. There’s no jail time on the table for a speeding ticket. Whereas reckless driving is considered a criminal offense so there is jail time as a possibility.

How Can You Tell The Difference?

When the officer issues somebody a speeding ticket, it will say on the ticket that it’s been issued for speeding, and it will have an area where it says that the defendant does not have to appear in court because they have the option to accept guilt for the fine and pre-pay it online before the court date.

In contrast, if someone is given a document for reckless driving, it’s called a summon which is a replacement for the traditional arrest process that most people think of in criminal cases. When the defendant signed the summon, they’re agreeing that they’re going to appear in person to answer to this charge in court. On the ticket will specify reckless driving and it will also say that it will not waive the defendant’s appearance in court. It will obligate him to have to appear.

Reckless Driving in Court

Each particular type of reckless driving has different requirements that the officer has to prove in court in order to get a conviction out of a judge. With each type, there’s going to be different defenses because the alleged behavior that caused the danger to life, limb or property is going to differ. In speed cases, the defense typically relates to the speed the vehicle was going. Most of the defenses really focus more on what the defendant did outside of court such as driver improvement or community service.

Reckless Driving and Your Criminal Record

A reckless driving charge looks bad on your record because even though the behavior charge is just speeding, the conviction is still a criminal class 1 misdemeanor. So, a lot of times, someone who’s doing a background check is only going to be looking to see if someone has any criminal conviction. And they’ll glance over and see that this person has been convicted of the most serious level of misdemeanor possible. It’s only one level away from being a felony which is a very big deal.

It’s really not a great idea to just shrug it off as not really that big of a deal and not looking that bad because class 1 misdemeanors are extremely serious and they are so avoidable in this day and age with reckless driving. So, there’s no reason they shouldn’t have an attorney on their side helping them out.

CDL Holders

Reckless driving can affect a commercial driver’s license. It’s considered a serious violation, and any a commercial driver who received too many serious violations in a short period of time is facing a disqualification of their commercial driver’s license. Something for CDL drivers to consider is that it’s possible for a commercial driver’s license to be disqualified even if the charge happened while they were driving their personal vehicle instead of their commercial vehicle.

Steps An Attorney Can Take

An attorney can help you analyze the facts of your case to figure out what, if any, possible defenses that may be available. A lot of times in reckless driving, there aren’t really any defenses for why someone was going at that speed.

With that said, there are a lot of other things that someone can do outside of the court before their court date that’s going to help them out in their hearing. Your attorney can explain how best to prepare for court and what steps you should be taking in beforehand in order for you to get the best possible result on the day of your hearing.