convicted felon with time over my head, still on probation, and am going to be arrested for destruction of property. what is the minimum and maximum possible sentence?
In Virginia, destruction of property is punished as a Class 1 Misdemeanor for damage less than $1,000, which is punishable by jail up to 12 months and/or a fine up to $2,500, and as a Class 6 felony for damage of $1,000 or more, which is punishable by a specific prison term between 1 and 5 years, OR jail up to 12 months and/or a fine up to $2,500.
If you are still on probation or subject to an order of good behavior, then if you are arrested (but more likely if you are convicted) you can expect a show cause hearing on the suspended time presently over your head. If you are found in violation, the court can give you no additional punishment or can revoke up to the entire amount of time over your head.
It sounds like you should hire a lawyer sooner rather than later. Many of us can arrange a surrender and in some cases get your bond situation sorted before you even have cuffs on.See question
I called they said Ist court date was a heaing if I wanted a lawyer or not. I just want to Pay this without having to make 2 different trips to VA> thanks for your time! the ticket is listed Reckless Driving N. Johnson
I agree with Mr. Moore. Simply paying a fine (if that option is offered to you) would result in a criminal conviction as opposed to a conviction for a traffic infraction, and that can have consequences you would probably prefer to avoid. You should contact a few local defense attorneys to see if the Court will waive your appearance for the trial - in other words, it may be possible to hire an attorney to appear for you without your having to drive back up. You can look for lawyers from Hopewell specifically, or you can try the Richmond area too. Best of luck.See question
to allow me to go to driving school to drop the ticket. This is my first ticket. Can I go to court and ask the judge myself if I can go to driving school to drop the ticket? Or is this not a good idea and a lawyer should do it? Is there a possibi...
You have the absolute right to represent yourself, i.e. to go to court on your own and argue the case without a lawyer. What you pay for when you hire an attorney is advice and advocacy based on that attorney's wisdom and experience.
In Virginia you also have an absolute right of appeal from General District Court (the first court you will be attending) to Circuit Court. In other words, if anything goes wrong in the first court you get a second bite at the proverbial apple. What you don't know, and what those local attorneys likely do know, is how much more or less sympathetic the Circuit Court judge you're likely to see on appeal will be in comparison to that General District Court.
I hope this information helps you decide whether or not to hire an attorney or to represent yourself. Best of luck.See question
I got pulled over the other day for not completely stopping at a right turn on an intersection. The officer asked for my driver's license, and he noticed it is a foreign one. He basically gave me the two options of either getting a US Driver's lic...
A lawyer would need a little bit more information from you in order to answer this question correctly. If you are a non-resident, you can drive on a foreign driver's license pursuant to Va. Code section 46.2-307 - http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?000+cod+46.2-307
If you are living or working in Virginia now, though, you have 30 days from the time you became a resident to get a license from our DMV.
Do not miss that court date. It sounds like you have already been charged, so I suggest you speak with some local Fairfax attorneys to get a feel for what the judges there might do under your specific circumstances. Many lawyers offer free consultations and can tell you exactly what they would do to help you.
Best of luck.See question
since i was driving my friends sports car, the cop might have thought that i must be going fast. No arrest was made. What are my options to fight the ticket ? ... or should i plead guilty and ask for reduced ticket ? thanks
Many judges impose active jail sentences in reckless driving cases at that speed. You should be speaking with some seasoned defense attorneys in the area and you should hire the best one you can afford.See question
I was charged with an underage consumption of alcohol. I went to court and the officer didn't show up so they nolle prossed it. Unfortunately I ran into the cop outside the court room as I was leaving and he asked if they assigned me any communi...
In a strict legal sense, the officer can bring the charge back within one year of the date of the alleged offense.
Whether or not he would do it depends on several factors. It is probably worth your time to speak with a couple defense attorneys in your area. In private, let them know the name of the judge, the prosecutor (if one was involved), and the officer. A good local defense attorney should be able to let you know if the officer would actually go back and get the charge, and whether or not he has already gotten in enough trouble with his chain of command for missing court the first time around. If the officer would bring the charge back under the circumstances, then you may be able to get a feel for how the prosecutor and the judge will react to your having to come back simply because the officer was late the first time.
Best of luckSee question
i would like to try counciling instead of him being in jail because we have a 2 month old son
Once a warrant is issued for domestic assault & battery, like any other crime, the decision to drop the charge rests with the prosecutor. Some prosecutors will take the complaining witness's (your) wishes into account, while others will actually ignore your wishes and proceed however they see fit. If you feel you are being bullied by a prosecutor, you may want to talk to a few attorneys in your area about what is happening.See question
I refused to take a breathalyzer at the scene where I was pulled over. The next day I submitted to one while in jail. Were the results of that test recorded and able to be used as evidence against me at my court date?
Typically the results of a breathalyzer administered at the jail are inadmissible at trial. In many cases you can't get out of jail until the jail is convinced you are not under the influence, so submitting to the test is not truly voluntary. Furthermore the testing procedures in many jails do not meet legal standards for reliability, so the tests are not offered into evidence in jail. The prosecutor in your case may be aware of the results and the results may have an impact on how he/she chooses to proceed in your case, e.g. whether to proceed to trial or attempt to negotiate the case with you, but the judge will probably never hear what the test results at the jail were.
There are many things you should discuss in private with a good defense attorney before you determine whether to take the case to trial or negotiate. You should consult with several of us and hire the best attorney you can afford.See question
the lookout for my vehicle. When the officer came up on me, I was in my apartment complex, and I was outside of my vehicle. My children were getting out of the vehicle. The ignition was off and the keys I had in my hands at the time of arrest don...
You will not get punished unless you get convicted and the likelihood of your conviction is something no attorney could give a good prediction on without a pretty in-depth interview (in private) and investigation of the Commonwealth's case. I agree that you should not post any more information about your case in public, but you should be consulting with defense attorneys.
Virginia law provides for mandatory jail time not only for a 2nd DUI within 5 years, but also for transporting a minor while under the influence. In other words, if this is your second DUI within five years and a child was in the car, and you get convicted, the judge must put you in jail. Find and hire the best lawyer you can afford.See question
What obligation do citizens have to cooperate with the police? Can a citizen refuse to go into the station with the police absent an arrest? And if the citizen refuses, what can the police do? Thank you.
"I don't want to speak with you. Am I free to leave?" is always a reasonable question.
Police may detain someone briefly to investigate crimes they reasonably believe were committed or are being committed, but only long enough to dispel their suspicions or establish probable cause to arrest. If you are not free to leave, they will let you know. Otherwise you are free to carry on about your day.See question