Today I helped my client avoid a reckless driving conviction for driving across a closed ramp to get onto the highway. Law enforcement officers have a lot of discretion as to how to charge a driver. My client was charged under the general reckless driving statute, under Va. Code § 46.2-852. The officer could have charged him with failure to obey a highway sign (under Va. Code § 46.2-830) or for evading a traffic control device (under Va. Code § 46.2-833.1).
I was able to help my client get his charge reduced to improper driving, thereby avoiding a criminal misdemeanor conviction for reckless driving. My client owned responsibility for making a bad decision to go around the closed gate and the judge believed us when we explained that he had learned his lesson from this experience. My client was cooperative with the officer and did not endanger others on the road. He had never gotten intro trouble with the law before and wanted to avoid a criminal misdemeanor, which could impact his employment opportunities. He also went to driving school proactively on his own, before his court date.
It is always exhilarating when a judge agrees with me that a criminal misdemeanor conviction is too harsh of a punishment for an offense and I enjoy helping my clients present their best case before the judge.
If you would like a free consultation regarding your traffic matter, please give me a call!