Restricted License Possible for Refusals in DUI Violation Cases

Judges may now grant restricted licenses to those convicted of first offense Refusal charges under Virginia Code § 18.2-268.3(E). This new update is a welcome change to a law that had previously left many Virginians without a way to get to work after a Refusal conviction in a DUI case. If you have been charged with Refusal under 18.2-268.3 and a DUI/DWI under 18.2-266, you might actually have a better chance of taking your case to trial under this new amendment. If you are convicted of a first offense Refusal charge in Virginia, the judge is required by law to suspend your privilege to drive in Virginia for a period of one year. Up until March of 2020, when the law was amended, the judge was unable to grant a restricted license. You simply were not allowed to drive for any reason....

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What To Do If Stopped for a DUI in Virginia?

This upcoming 4th of July weekend, you should expect to see a large police presence as DUI/DWI laws are strictly enforced. As COVID-19 restrictions are lifting, the Virginia Beach area should see a large amount of motor and pedestrian traffic for the holiday weekend. Virginia Beach Police Officers and Virginia State Police will be strictly enforcing the DUI/DWI laws at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront, Interstate 264, and all surrounding side streets in the Virginia Beach area. If you are going to drink, you should get a designated driver or pay for a ride sharing service. The small price of an Uber is nothing compared to the cost of defending a DUI charge in Virginia Beach. It doesn’t take much for a police officer to have enough evidence to stop your vehicle to perform a DUI...

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May-June 2021 Case Results: 104 mph Reckless Driving by Speed Dismissed in Virginia Beach, Jail Time Avoided for 111/60 RD in Chesapeake GDC, Misdemeanor Tunnel Height Violations Dismissed in Hampton GDC

DISCLAIMER – EACH CASE IS UNIQUE AND CASE RESULTS DEPEND ON YOUR INDIVIDUAL SITUATION. CASE RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE UNDERTAKEN BY THE LAWYER. Below we feature a sampling of case results for May and June of 2021. Our clients avoided convictions for reckless driving by speed for speeds as high as 104 mph (Virginia Beach GDC), 100 mph (Chesapeake GDC), 94 mph (Norfolk GDC), and 75 mph in a 35 mph (Portsmouth Circuit Court). Clients avoided jail even though convicted of doing 111 mph in Chesapeake GDC, 97 mph in Northampton GDC , and 100 mph in Virginia Beach Circuit Court. Reckless driving dismissals occurred in cities such as Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Newport News, Suffolk, and Northampton. Dismissals occurred for other charges...

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New Virginia Driving Laws are Now in Effect (as of July 1, 2021)

As of July 1, 2021, there are several new traffic law amendments that greatly widen legal protections for drivers in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Up until now, police officers in Virginia routinely used “equipment violations” to justify traffic stops for Driving Under the Influence and Driving While Intoxicated (DUI/DWI) investigation purposes. But with brand new legislation now effective, the Virginia General Assembly has severely restricted a police officer’s authority to pull a driver over for an equipment violation alone. These new amendments may now give drivers charged with Driving Under the Influence or Driving While Intoxicated (DUI/DWI) under § 18.2-266 a fighting chance in court. For example, before the new amendments, a police officer was allowed to initiate a traffic stop of...

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Holding a Phone Prohibited While Driving in Virginia

As of January 1, 2021, Virginia makes merely holding a cell phone while driving unlawful under Virginia Code § 46.2-818.2. The penalty for a first time offense is $125 and the penalty goes up to $250 for a second offense or if the offense occurred in a work zone. The law reads as follows: A. It is unlawful for any person, while driving a moving motor vehicle on the highways in the Commonwealth, to hold a handheld personal communications device. B. The provisions of this section shall not apply to: 1. The operator of any emergency vehicle while he is engaged in the performance of his official duties; 2. An operator who is lawfully parked or stopped; 3. Any person using a handheld personal communications device to report an emergency; 4. The use of an amateur or a citizens band radio; or...

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Reckless Driving for Failing to Give Proper Signals

Of all the different ways a person can be charged with reckless driving in Virginia, a reckless driving charge for failing to give proper signals is one of the more rare ones used. This law is codified under Virginia Code § 46.2-860 and is very short, being only one sentence. "A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who fails to give adequate and timely signals of intention to turn, partly turn, slow down, or stop, as required by Article 6 (§ 46.2-848 et seq.) of this chapter." As innocent as it may seem to fail to give a proper signal, any charge of reckless driving is still considered a class 1 misdemeanor under Virginia law and carries with it the possibility of harsh penalties, including up to a year in jail, up to a $2,500 fine, and a potential license suspension of up to six...

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Virginia State Police Enforcement of Reckless Driving

Recently, the Virginia State Police have taken to Twitter to show that they are enforcing traffic laws in the Hampton Roads area. They recently tweeted a snippet of a traffic summons for a driver in Norfolk charged with reckless driving by speed at 131 mph in a 55 mph zone. With an alleged speed differential of 76 mph, if the Trooper can prove his case, it will be likely that the judge will impose active jail time on the driver. Yes, you’re reading this traffic summonses correctly... a #VSP Trooper stopped a vehicle on I-564 in #Norfolk for 131 mph in a posted 55 mph. #ExcessiveSpeedKills #Drive2SaveLives #SlowDown pic.twitter.com/3l4zyr8joT — VA State Police (@VSPPIO) June 13, 2021 Please be warned that judges are tough on speeding in Virginia! In many jurisdictions in Virginia, judges...

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March-April 2021 Case Results: RD by speed avoided at 98 mph and 95 mph, RD racing avoided at 107 mph, misdemeanor eluding charge avoided, and Elevated BAC on a DUI 2nd kept out.

DISCLAIMER – EACH CASE IS UNIQUE AND CASE RESULTS DEPEND ON YOUR INDIVIDUAL SITUATION. CASE RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE UNDERTAKEN BY THE LAWYER. Below we feature a sampling of notable case results for March and April of 2021. We helped clients avoid reckless driving convictions for speeds as high as 98 mph and 95 mph and avoid jail for speeds as high as 100 mph. Clients also avoided misdemeanors for reckless driving for racing at 107 mph, failure to appear, no operator's license, eluding the police, misdemeanor tunnel height violation, and more. A client with a DUI 2nd offense avoided additional mandatory jail time when her BAC was kept out of the charge. Dismissals occurred in cities such as Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Suffolk, Newport News, and...

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Reckless Driving for Failure to Yield Right of Way

Virginia makes it a reckless driving offense for failing to yield the right of way. Most of the time that we see this type of reckless driving charge it is because an accident occurred. Specifically, Virginia Code § 46.2-863 states: A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who fails to bring his vehicle to a stop immediately before entering a highway from a side road when there is traffic approaching on such highway within 500 feet of such point of entrance, unless (i) a "Yield Right-of-Way" sign is posted or (ii) where such sign is posted, fails, upon entering such highway, to yield the right-of-way to the driver of a vehicle approaching on such highway from either direction. It is interesting to note that law enforcement could have charged the same event as a traffic infraction...

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Why I Enjoy Being a Criminal Defense Attorney

When I first started doing criminal defense work a decade ago, family and friends would wonder how I could with a clear conscience defend guilty people. How is that standing up for justice? Although I do defend some guilty people, I would rephrase the question to, “Why would I want to defend those charged with crimes?” Notice that I did not say that I defend criminals because not all my clients are criminals. Not all of my clients are guilty of the crime for which they are accused. I am however a lawyer who specializes in being a defender of the accused, each and every time we face a trial. Consider our client Keith, who was charged with reckless driving by speed for going 116 mph when he was in fact innocent. The officer pulled over the wrong person and Keith found himself on the...

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