In Loudoun, speeding offenses can be very serious. You run the risk of having what seems to be simple speeding actually turn out to be a criminal misdemeanor. Knowing what to expect during a traffic stop can go a long way in helping you through the process without causing further issues for you. An experienced Loudoun County speeding ticket lawyer can help you figure out what you’re actually being charged with and how you should approach it.
Excessive speeding is a type of reckless driving, but there are other types of reckless driving charges that encompass a variety of moving violations that aren’t necessarily speed-related.
Speed limit laws are also absolute in Loudoun, so it is important that they are adhered to at all times. If not, it is a ticketable offense, and there is a good chance that you could be pulled over and charged with speeding or reckless driving.
There are two main types of speeding offenses in Loudoun. We have infractions, which are punishable by a fine and you usually will get some demerit points on your license. If you get too many demerit points, you can face a license suspension, but there are no more penalties besides that.
The second type of speeding offense is more serious. It’s reckless driving, which is a criminal Class 1 misdemeanor. This means that a conviction comes with the possibility of up to twelve months in jail. You also may face a fine and potentially a six month suspension of your license.
Additionally, being in possession of a police radar detector is a citation in Loudoun County. These devices are illegal, and if you are caught with one in your car, even if it is unplugged and not functioning, it will result in a fine and possible confiscation of the instrument.
Because speeding can be very serious in Loudoun—more so than in other neighboring jurisdictions—you should be very cautious about what you’re being charged with, especially if you are an out-of-state driver. You should definitely look at what you’ve been given by the officer to determine whether it’s actually a speeding ticket or something more serious like a reckless driving summons. The document will usually specify speeding or reckless driving. If it doesn’t, it will specify whether you are required to appear in court. Because you’re required to appear in court for criminal misdemeanors, you won’t have the option to prepay the fine online and waive your appearance for a reckless driving charge.
In Loudoun, the most common ways that officers prove that drivers are speeding are by using their speed-reading equipment, which include radar and LIDAR guns. Officers may also pace vehicles, which is when officers will follow a vehicle that’s speeding and match their speed with the cruiser so that they can figure out how fast that vehicle is going. Additionally, law enforcement will set up speed traps along various roads.
You don’t have to show up to court for a speeding ticket, since it’s just a traffic infraction. You are able to plead guilty online and pay the fine that way. The problem with doing that is then you have a guilty conviction and you don’t give yourself the opportunity to get anything else. That’s different from reckless driving because even if you wanted to plead guilty to reckless driving, you still have to appear in court in person. All criminal charges require the defendant to appear in person unless there is approval from the judge saying otherwise.
An experienced Loudoun County speeding ticket lawyer is going to help you because she will be able to tell you what you should do before going to court. Then you have the best chance possible to get your charge either dismissed or reduced to something else.
An experienced lawyer knows the loopholes and defenses that most people won’t have much experience with, unless they’re frequent flyers in the court system. You want to make sure that you mitigate the damages so that they have the least amount of impact on your personal life from your conviction.
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