If the police stop you for reckless driving in Norfolk or Virginia Beach, you must understand that you did not receive a ticket comparable to one for speeding. You have been charged with a serious misdemeanor offense. If you are convicted, you could be sentenced to jail or a hefty fine and have the long-term consequences of having a permanent criminal record.
What Is Considered Reckless Driving in Virginia?
In our state, you can be charged with reckless driving for many offenses other than driving too fast. There are at least 16 offenses that fall under the crime of reckless driving:
- Driving more than 20 miles over the speed limit
- Driving at more than 85 mph no matter what the posted speed limit is
- Operating a motor vehicle in a reckless manner or in a way that endangers an individual or property
- Driving at a too fast speed given road or weather conditions
- Driving with faulty brakes
- Passing an emergency vehicle when it has its lights or siren on
- Passing a school bus that is stopped or attempting to stop to drop off or pick up students or handicapped individuals
- Passing two vehicles that are driving abreast unless there are three or more lanes of traffic traveling in the same direction
- Passing on a crest or a curve in the road
- Passing another vehicle at a railroad crossing
- Driving recklessly while in a parking lot
- Not yielding the right of way
- Not using proper turn signals
- Drag racing
- Driving with too many passengers or otherwise overloading a motor vehicle in a way that the driver’s visibility and control of the vehicle is impaired
Penalties for a First Conviction of Reckless Driving
In Virginia, reckless driving is charged as a Class 1 misdemeanor. If you are convicted and this is your first offense, you could face these punishments:
- Jail sentences of up to 12 months
- Fine not to exceed $2,500
- Driver’s license suspension for six months
- Six demerit points on your driving record
In addition, you would have to pay higher insurance costs. You would also have a permanent criminal record that could affect your ability to obtain employment, loans, security clearance, and more.
Our Traffic Ticket Lawyers Are Here to Help
Were you arrested for reckless driving? Do not make the mistake of just pleading guilty or ignoring the charges you face.
Our experienced traffic law attorneys will mount a strong defense strategy for you that could result in the charges being dismissed or reduced to a less serious offense. To find out more about how we can assist you, call our Norfolk office to schedule your free consultation today.