What is Reckless Driving in Prince William County?
Reckless driving in Virginia is categorized generally under the general reckless driving statute which is 46.2-852 as driving that endangers life, limb or property. With that said, however, there are other code sections that contain conduct which, if specifically done, can constitute reckless driving on its own even without proof by the government that anyone was particularly in danger.
Reckless driving is a Class 1 misdemeanor in Virginia and as such it is punishable by up to a year in jail and $2500 fine and also up to a 6 month loss of license. As a result it is something that warrants contact with a Prince William County reckless driving lawyer and should be taken as seriously as possible.
Penalties for Reckless Driving in Prince William County
The penalties can be up to a year in jail and $2500 fine and a 6 months loss of license. That does not mean that those charged will actually be sentenced and fined that much, but there are certain cases such as excessive speed cases where people might go to jail. Very famously and very recently in Fairfax County there was a Washington Nationals Baseball player get sent to jail for going over 100 miles/hour. People need to understand that if it can happen to him, it can certainly happen to them as well.
Prince William County Accidents and Reckless Driving Charges
One thing that sets Prince William County apart from others is that the officers there will almost uniformly charge reckless driving any time there is an accident even if it seems as though the accident was an innocent mistake. They just automatically go to reckless driving if there is even a minor fender bender which is very unfortunate because it puts people at a lot of risk and if people arrive at court not knowing quite what they are up against and how serious these charges are they might end up with a Class 1 Misdemeanor and not even realize that is what is happening to them.
Other than that observation, however, there is not anything unique about the way Prince William County handles them more than other jurisdictions. Every jurisdiction in Northern Virginia treats reckless cases seriously.
Reckless Driving Summons to Appear
Individuals are almost never arrested in reckless driving cases. In almost every case that the person is charged with reckless driving they are released on a summons, which means they are given a sheet of paper by the police officer giving the court date. They have a court date and they are required to appear. If they sign that document agreeing to appear then they are released on the summons pending court date.
Long Term Implications of a Reckless Driving Conviction
A conviction in reckless driving is going to stay in your driving record for 11 years. It is 6 points and they will stay with you for all the 11 years. Additionally, you should expect that your insurance rates will go sky high if you are convicted of reckless driving. Additionally, you will of course have a Class 1 Misdemeanor on your records which will never go away.