What To Expect From Speeding Ticket Cases in Newport News

The first thing you can expect from your speeding ticket in Virginia is that it will be issued to you right there on the scene of the incident by the police officer. You will be released immediately and you won’t be arrested or taken to jail or anything like that. What you should look for is the specific name of the charge to make sure that that is actually only speeding and not a summons for reckless driving. If you are unsure you should consult with a Newport News speeding ticket lawyer to make sure.

The difference would be that if you receive a summons for reckless driving you are receiving what is a substitution for the traditional arrest in criminal offenses and when you sign it you are promising to appear in court to answer to the criminal charges. It is much more serious than a traffic infraction and it is important to know the difference.

Lots of people don’t realize that it is very possible for a speeding ticket to actually be a reckless driving ticket. Reckless driving is more serious than a traffic infraction for speeding, but the difference in the behavior charged can be very slight. Once you pass a certain threshold of speed the charge goes from a traffic infraction to reckless driving. Virginia is one of the few states that have reckless driving by speed which is issued in the exact same way that a speeding ticket is issued so it is easy to confuse the two.

What is Considered Speeding in Newport News?

In Newport News, violations that are considered speeding include driving over the posted speed limit, failing to obey special speed limit zones such as school zones or driving too fast for the current conditions.

In Virginia, for speeding offenses there are traffic infractions and then there are also criminal charges. The difference between traffic infractions and criminal charges is that he former only affects somebody’s driving record and doesn’t come with any jail time whereas the latter affects the criminal record, which is permanent and cannot be expunged. A criminal conviction can also have a detrimental effect on somebody’s future opportunities.

Within each type of speeding offense, the penalties are going to be more severe as the speed rises with the level of the charge going from just speeding to reckless driving, which is a misdemeanor, once the speed reaches over 80 miles/hour or 20 miles/hour over the posted speed limit.

Can You Be Ticketed For Going 5mph Over the Limit?

In Virginia, it is a ticketable offense to be going any miles per hour over the speed limit. So while you could be pulled over for going only 5 miles over the speed limit technically, it is not something that officers are generally going to look for.

Speeding Ticket Enforcement in Newport News

In Newport News, there is often heavy traffic, so it is very common to see people getting speeding tickets during rush hour when they are just trying to get around all the vehicles. It’s also common for people to believe that it is not a big deal to be speeding because everyone else on the road is doing it. I get clients all the time who tell me, “Well I was just following the flow of traffic. They didn’t pull anyone else over so why should I get a conviction?”

That is not a proper defense. Just because everybody else is breaking the law doesn’t mean that you should get away with breaking the law. An officer physically cannot pull over the entire highway. You just happened to get unlucky in being the one charged, but you don’t have a strong defense because of it. Another common way I have seen speeding tickets issued in Virginia is when people are getting off the highway and the speed limit changes suddenly. Routinely this is the type of spot where officers will wait because they know that drivers are used to driving fast on the highways and won’t adjust their speed right away.

Out-of-State Drivers

An out of state driver should contact an attorney in Virginia if they are facing a speeding ticket in Virginia. While they do have the option to prepay the ticket, a better option is to get an attorney to try to fight the charges in court for the out of state driver without the out of state driver having to come back. That way they can potentially get the charges dismissed altogether or they can also have the charges reduced.