6. "Officer, you do not have a valid calibration certificate, do you?"
When the police use a radar device to measure speed (and as a result, charge the driver with reckless driving by speed), the Virginia Code requires the officer to show a certificate of calibration (if accuracy is an issue raised at trial or by a defense attorney before the case is heard). Many details are required. If there is a deficiency, then an experienced traffic and criminal defense attorney should be able to point out the problems. In such a scenario, the driver cannot be convicted.
5. Speedometer Calibration Report: for cases on the edge
If there is a good reason to believe your speedometer is faulty, then a proper calibration report can help win some cases (or lead to a positive outcome). When there is an issue with a speedometer and a valid report is submitted to the court proving this to be the case, a reckless driving charge predicated upon a speed in the low-to-mid 80?s could be reduced to a regular (non-criminal) traffic infraction! In Virginia, speeding "in excess" of 80 mph is reckless driving, regardless of the speed limit (in some areas, the speed limit is as high as 70 mph).
4. "I was not the person driving."
An officer's mistake as to identity of the actual driver happens. Officers are human beings, and no person is perfect. Perhaps the most common reason is due, at least in-part, to a confusing accident scene. If there are multiple passengers, or if the driver or passenger has been injured, it only adds to the confusion at the scene.
3. "I was not driving on a highway."
Before you shout for joy, I am afraid that this defense is unusual. The definition of a "highway," for purposes of applying the reckless driving laws, may not be what most people think of when they hear the word, "highway." I am referring to a private road that has not been adopted by a local ordinance as within the definition of a "highway." Yes, it is true that some roads--in subdivisions, for example--may not be deemed "highways" for purposes of applying the reckless driving laws. Your reckless driving attorney can determine whether or not the road where you were alleged to have been recklessly driving is a public road and thus, a highway...or not.
2. "I do not remember losing control of my vehicle."
Ultimately, the Commonwealth Attorney must prove every element of a criminal offense beyond a reasonable doubt to secure a conviction. The more that is not known, the better it usually will turn out for the defendant. A reckless driving charge stemming from a single-car accident sometimes can be difficult to prosecute if evidence is lacking. Reckless driving based on an alleged "failure to maintain control" (or faulty brakes) has been charged against drivers in Virginia, even in cases when the officer did not witness the accident. If no incriminating statement was made, and no witnesses exist, even if the driver does recall why the crash occurred, a person can "plead the 5th."
1. "My GPS can help prove my innocence."
How can a GPS help a Virginia driver beat a speeding or reckless driving ticket? This defense takes a certain presence of mind on the part of the driver. To find out how this defense has been known to work, what it requires, and what the driver needs to show, download our Reckless Driving Cheat Sheet, available by email in .PDF format for free; get your copy by visiting the first link below this guide.
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