What Should You Expect From a Reckless Driving Case in Norfolk?

The following is taken from an interview with a Norfolk reckless driving lawyer as they discuss what you should expect if you have been charged with reckless driving. To discuss your case and learn about the legal options at your disposal, call today and schedule a free consultation.

If the defendant has ever been to traffic court then they can expect that the process will be pretty much identical. When their name comes up in a long list of other cases they go to the front of the court where the officer will also be present. The judge will ask the defendant how they are going to plead.

If the defendant says that they are pleading guilty then the judge will ask for any facts and evidences that will weigh in on the sentence the person will receive. If the defendant pleads not guilty then there will be a trial right there on the spot which begins with the officer’s report of what he observed and what the circumstances were. The defendant has the opportunity then to question the officer and offer his own evidence.

He should then expect the judge to come to a conclusion immediately and decide whether the defendant is guilty or not and then either sentence him or dismiss the case.

How Do The Judges and The Prosecutors in Norfolk Treat Reckless Driving Cases?

Judges view reckless driving charges as very serious. Norfolk is unique from some other jurisdictions because it does not have prosecutors handle reckless driving cases. Typically the officer who charged the defendant is the one present to handle the case. The officers are fair and usually just read their police reports and answer any questions the judge or defense may have. This does not mean however that reckless driving case is offered any leniency. The officer doesn’t question the defendant but the judge certainly does and the judge will make it known that the officer is not the one on trial in the case.

Judges in Norfolk are harsh on reckless driving cases and many times if the speed was 30 miles/hour or more over the speed limit the judge will throw the defendant in jail immediately. Because of the stricter procedures behind the proper reckless driving testimony by the police it is important to have an attorney who will know when an officer has left something crucial out of his report and can object in order to potentially have the whole case thrown out.

Is the Process of Being Charged with Reckless Driving Similar to Other Criminal Charges?

No, actually the process is more comparable to what happens when someone receives a traffic ticket. The officer will ask the driver to sign a document that states that they are not admitting guilt to the charge and that they promise to appear in court to decide the matter on whatever date. The driver is not arrested or taken into custody but released immediately upon signing this document. The document is called the summons and it is essentially a substitute for the arrest process. It is not uncommon for people to misunderstand that they are being charged with a criminal offense rather than a simple traffic ticket because of the fact that they are not taken into custody they way you would expect for any other criminal charge.