It is easy to think that traffic violations are ?no big deal.? Getting a ticket, however, can mean missing time from work to attend court, paying fines, increased insurance premiums, and harsh penalties for future infractions. Tickets and citations can even result in the loss of employment for those who drive for a living. If you received a ticket in Virginia and are facing criminal charges for a traffic offense, then it is crucial that you resolve the issue immediately. This is true whether you are a local resident, or if you reside out of state. Roanoke criminal defense lawyer Cerid Lugar handles many different types of traffic violations, and she?s prepared to help you.
Traffic Cases We Handle
If you are cited for a traffic violation, then hiring an attorney can help you to save time, points against your license, money, and possibly the privilege of driving. Having legal representation may potentially mean lower fines, not having to attend court, and possibly having the citation dismissed altogether. Typical situations in which one may wish to retain counsel include:
Speeding & Traffic Tickets
A speeding ticket can have multiple detrimental consequences that affect various aspects of your life. If you fail to appear for your court date, or to pay your fine in a timely manner, then the matter may result in the issuance of a failure to appear. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles can also suspend your license for failure to pay. Those who drive for a living may find themselves placed under review by their employers. One will also likely miss time from work to go to court, attend driving classes, and to attend other mandated programs.
Attorney Cerid Lugar is a VA traffic lawyer who will go to court on your behalf. If she is not able to gain an outright dismissal of the violation, then she will work to gain you the most favorable resolution possible. Once the matter has been concluded, then attorney Lugar will send you notice of the disposition and clear instructions on how to complete the requirements (if there are any) which have been put in place by the court.
People make the mistake of thinking that they are dealing with ?just another ticket? when they face reckless driving charges. The fact of the matter, however, is that reckless driving is a class 1 misdemeanor under Virginia law, and if convicted, one may face potential jail time. Other potential penalties for this offense include fines, community service, a criminal record, jail and potential disqualification from employment. If you have been arrested or charged, then it is important that you retain a criminal defense attorney to assist you with the situation.
?Reckless driving occurs under 14 different criminal codes in the Commonwealth of Virginia. One of the reckless driving offenses most often charged is when one ?operates a vehicle at a speed or in a manner so as to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person.? The other reckless driving charge often cited is driving 80 mph and over, or 20 mph over the speed limit. Charges are automatically brought if one gets into an accident or engages in certain forms of conduct spelled out under Virginia law. Some types of conduct include:
- Driving without ?proper control? of a vehicle
- Unsafe passing on a curve,
- Driving with an excessive number of people in the front seat
A first offense reckless driving charge is a class 1 misdemeanor. The penalties for this offense include up to 12 months in jail and fines reaching $2,500. These penalties may be elevated for subsequent offenses and for cases that involve property damage or injury to others.
The District Court typically hears reckless driving cases. In many of these cases, an experienced criminal defense lawyer will dispute as to whether your conduct actually constitutes operation of a vehicle in a reckless or wanton manner. There may also be a dispute over statements which law enforcement gained from a defendant in violation of their Miranda rights, and whether such statements should be admissible in court. If there are not sufficient grounds to fight the charges, then attorney Lugar might still be able to gain a more favorable resolution than would otherwise be obtained through the plea bargain process.?
Hit & Runs
Virginia law requires that you remain at the scene after you cause an accident. You must also report the incident to law enforcement within 24 hours and attempt to render aid, if possible, to anyone whom they may have injured. Failure to meet these requirements can result in class 1?misdemeanor charges?if the incident caused property damage of less than $1,000. If the crash caused injury to a person or property damage in excess of that amount, then you will face class 6?felony charges. The former carries a potential sentence of up to 12 months in jail, while the latter can result in five years in prison. These penalties are in addition to those which may be imposed for other charges incurred at the time of the hit and run offense.
If you are 18 years or older, your misdemeanor hit and run case will be heard in District Court. If your charges reach the felony level, your case will be tried in the Circuit Court. Hit and run charges sometimes involve issues of eyewitness identifications which were collected in violation of a defendant?s Constitutional rights or were otherwise faulty. Another issue that arises in such cases is when law enforcement gains statements from a defendant in violation of their?Miranda?rights. These types of issues can be used to fight the charges outright. If a dismissal cannot be obtained, and a favorable resolution cannot be reached, then the prosecution will be required to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.
Call Lugar Law PC for Help
At Lugar Law PC, we handle a wide range of traffic violations and cases. Attorney Cerid Lugar strives to obtain the best possible resolution for her clients. Once your matter has been concluded, she will contact you to inform you of the disposition and provide clear instructions of what steps, if any, you have to take next.
Attorney Cerid Lugar understands that one of the most common complaints against lawyers is they fail to stay in communication with their clients. She strives to be different by making communication with you a priority. She quickly responds to emails, promptly returns phone calls, and makes herself available to answer your questions. To schedule a free, initial consultation of your case, call (540) 384-0348 today, or reach out through the online form.