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What is Reckless Driving in Newport News?

In Virginia, reckless driving is a misdemeanor charge. There is a variety of ways that somebody can be charged with reckless driving, which varies from speed to just general reckless driving, which sometimes happens when someone is in an accident and the officer does not know what else to charge them with. If you are charged with reckless driving, speak with a reckless driving attorney in Newport News.

What does a Reckless Driving Charge Mean?

Being charged in Newport News with reckless driving means that you are being charged with a criminal offense. This is very serious and obviously it’s a bigger deal than if you are charged with just a regular speeding ticket. It’s a class one misdemeanor, which means that the person charged is facing up to 12 months in jail and a fine of up to $2500. The conviction will not only affect a person’s driving record, but will also permanently remain on their criminal record, which could have an effect on future employment, insurance rates, and a whole variety of other things.

If somebody is charged with reckless driving in Newport News the that person’s case will be heard in the Newport News general district court.

How Can Reckless Driving Be Charged in Newport News?

There are many ways in Newport News that someone can be charged with reckless driving. The most common ways are by speed, which is the case if you are driving faster than 80 miles per hour anywhere or if you are driving 20 miles per hour or more over the speed limit. Other examples include:

  • Passing an emergency vehicle with its lights on
  • Merging onto the highway without yielding
  • Passing a stopped school bus that is loading and unloading passengers
  • Drag racing
  • Driving too fast for weather conditions
  • Driving a vehicle with faulty brakes

Differences Between Reckless Driving and a Traffic Ticket

Reckless driving is more serious than a traffic ticket because a reckless driving charge is a criminal charge not just a traffic violation. The biggest difference is long term, which means that if someone is convicted of a traffic ticket then they will be able to have that removed from their driving record in a few years whereas a criminal conviction of reckless driving will be on their permanent record forever. Immediately the differences will also be apparent as someone will be required to appear in court for a reckless driving ticket whereas a traffic ticket may be prepaid in advance and the person doesn’t ever have to go to court if they don’t want to.

What Are The Penalties for Reckless Driving in Newport News?

In Newport News since reckless driving is considered to be a criminal charge, the penalties are harsher than regular traffic violations. Penalties associated with reckless driving are a six-month license suspension, jail time of up to 12 months and up to $2500 worth of fines.

A conviction for reckless driving in Newport News will also cause somebody up to six demerit points on their driving record which will remain on there for 11 years.

Other Consequences of a Reckless Driving Conviction

If someone receives a reckless driving conviction, the long-term implications of this are all the consequences that come with having a permanent conviction on their criminal record of a class 1 misdemeanor. This could have an effect on future and current employment or obtaining housing or even obtaining student loans.

If someone has a background check performed on them, then this will appear, which may have a negative effect on the reason for the background check. It also can have an effect on insurance rates and can eventually result in a suspended license.