In Virginia Beach reckless driving cases, there are no prosecutors involved. Instead, the police officer handles the case. Below, a reckless driving attorney discusses how such a case will be handled in a Virginia Beach court.
To be convicted, what needs to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt is that the driver was in fact driving in a manner that endangers life, limb, or property. This differs depending on the type of reckless driving charge at issue.
For the most common type, which is reckless driving due to excessive speed, the officer must prove that the defendant’s speed was either faster than 80 miles per hour or it was 20 miles per hour over the posted speed limit. The officer must also testify regarding his method of calculating the driver’s speed and must clarify that it was calibrated within six months and it was done so properly.
The police officer’s incident report is the primary piece of evidence in reckless driving cases. It usually contains the following:
For speeding cases and reckless driving, there is not much more than the report usually. If the reckless driving led to an accident, then there may be pictures of the accident which could show the damage to the vehicle or anything else that was damaged or relevant in the area. There may also be witnesses that saw the events unfold that can testify about what they saw. Otherwise, there really is not a ton of evidence typically in reckless cases.
It’s possible to defend a reckless driving matter in an unfamiliar courtroom, but it is much easier in a courtroom where the judges and the methods and police are already familiar and there are relationships built with all the court players beforehand. Some judges will react very differently to similar defenses, so it’s better and advantageous to be aware of what exactly has a better chance of working in your case.
One big mistake happens when an individual is pulled over and the officer ask, “Do you know how fast you were going?” The driver then readily admits to the law enforcement officer that the driver was aware of their speed and that that speed happens to be reckless. This is a confession that proves their guilt. Another pretty common mistake is when people do not understand the serious nature of a misdemeanor charge.
When you are pulled over, you should do nothing more except turn over your driver’s license, accept the ticket, sign it, and move on and then get an attorney as soon as possible. You should not make assumptions before knowing exactly what you are getting into, and you should be careful about any making any statements which can be considered an admission of guilt.
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