Nearly 100 Years of Legal Service

Our firm was founded by T. Brooke Howard in 1923. We have been providing exceptional legal service for our clients.

Reckless Driving Penalties And Potential Defenses

On Behalf of | May 10, 2023 | Criminal defense |

In Virginia, reckless driving is a serious offense that can result in severe injuries, property damage and death. Reckless driving is defined as operating a vehicle with a willful disregard for the safety of other people or property.

It may include excessive speeding, ignoring traffic signals or signs, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, weaving in and out of traffic or other behavior that poses a significant risk to others.

There are several consequences a driver can face in addition to putting other drivers and pedestrians at risk.

Reckless driving overview

Reckless driving is a misdemeanor in Virginia. This means that it is a criminal offense, it carries a penalty of up to 12 months in jail and a fine of up to $2,500. If the driver is convicted of reckless driving, their driver’s license can be suspended.

Reckless driving accidents can also cause a wide range of injuries. These include broken bones, head and spine injuries, internal injuries, bruises and cuts. In more severe cases, a driver or a pedestrian could be paralyzed or suffer brain damage. It can have a devastating impact on the affected person’s quality of life.

Potential defenses

A person accused of reckless driving may have defenses available to them. The most common defense is that the driver was not actually driving recklessly.

If the prosecution cannot show that the defendant was driving in a way that endangered another person, that may be a defense. As a result, the charges could be dropped or reduced.

Also, if the accused driver can prove that they were driving to or from an emergency, that may also be a defense as well as failure to stop because of faulty or missing traffic signals. These are only some examples of defenses that may be available.