Chesterfield Reckless Driving by Accident Charges
Reckless driving by accident is when the officer determines that you were driving in such a manner or at a reckless speed so as to endanger life, limb, or property and that as a result of that driving the accident was caused. The officer’s interpretations of the accident scene as well as witness statements are very crucial in a reckless driving by accident case. To learn more about these types of charges, call and schedule a consultation with a Chesterfield reckless driving lawyer.
How Reckless Driving by Accident Charged in Chesterfield
Reckless driving by accident will be charged if the officer feels that your driving was in such a manner that it was reckless or that it endangered life, limb, or property. The officers do not charge it at every accident scene. However, in Chesterfield County, it’s very common for them to do so. Basically, they’ll review the accident, speak to any witnesses at the scene of the accident, get statements as to what occurred, and then charge from there.
Severity of This Charge
Reckless driving by accident is not considered a less severe form of reckless driving. It’s actually exactly the same as reckless by speed—both are class 1 misdemeanors. Both carry the possibility of a 6-month loss of license and both carry the possibility of a 2,500-dollar fine.
Importance of Hiring an Attorney for These Charges
Individuals definitely want to hire an attorney in a case like this over self-representation. Again, reckless driving by accident, very similarly to reckless by speed, is a class 1 misdemeanor. It carries up to 6 months in jail, up to a 2,500-dollar fine, and up to a 6-month loss of license. In many cases, it’s very hard to defend yourself if you’re not familiar with the court or the court proceedings. What will often happen is that the officer will testify and then have his witnesses testify. That’s where an attorney can come in to cross-examine the State’s witnesses as to what occurred at the accident and primarily show the court that you were actually not at fault for the accident.
Reckless driving by accident in court will typically require testimony from not only the officer, but also any witnesses to the accident. They will attempt to testify that you were driving in such a manner that endangered life, limb, or property. It is not simply just the officer’s testimony, but also the other individuals who were witnesses to the accident.
How a Chesterfield Reckless Driving Lawyer Can Help
With a reckless driving by accident case, an attorney can do several things. Number one, we will typically try and negotiate with the prosecutors to try and get a resolution. In addition to that, we will try and get information about the accident itself or an accident reconstruction to determine if we can show that you were not at fault for the accident or someone else was in fact at fault. Furthermore, we can recommend certain steps we can take to address the charge itself—whether that is driving school, community service, or something of that nature. All of these steps can be combined together to try to get the manner reduced or even dismissed.
Defending Against These Types of Charges
The evidence is not as in-depth as a civil accident case. With a civil case, you’re often allowed to present a lot more evidence than you would in a criminal case. Basically, the attorney will cross-examine the officer, but also cross-examine any witnesses to the accident. The attorney will try and show that you were not at fault or that the other driver or someone else caused the accident.
Legal Excuses for Involvement in Collision
There really aren’t any legal excuses to being in a collision. You can raise the issue of being in a medical or life-threatening emergency or if there’s a malfunction in the vehicle that you were unaware of or should not have been aware of. Those can be issues that can be raised. One of the things the courts will look to is your driving history and the factors that were involved in the accident. In other words, were you on the phone? Were there other people in the car? Was there alcohol involved? All these issues can play a key role in determining the charge in a case like this.