In Connecticut, you can be charged with reckless driving based on several factors related to how you were driving. The only automatic factor when it comes to reckless driving is if you were driving 85 miles per hour or more. Regardless of any other factor, this is enough to file a charge against you.

Reckless driving may also be charged if you were driving in an unsafe manner based on road conditions (i.e., 50 mph in snow and ice), time of day, driving under the influence, texting or making a phone call, drinking or eating to the point of being distracted, and so forth. The law is extremely subjective, and gives police officers wide discretion in deciding whether to file a reckless driving charge.

Possible Penalties for Reckless Driving

For a first offense, if you are convicted of reckless driving, you can face up to 30 days in jail, a loss of your license and a fine of up to $300. With the conviction of a second offense for reckless driving, you could be looking at as much as one year in jail and a fine of up to $600.

Defending Against Reckless Driving Charges

The good news is that because reckless driving charges are highly subjective, an attorney can directly challenge the facts of the case and that the driving was not actually reckless. If it can be shown that your driving was generally safe, but perhaps there was a momentary lapse that took place but was quickly corrected, then you may be able to have the charge dismissed.

In cases where you are based on excessive speed, an attorney will contest that assertion by finding out if the speed was officially clocked on radar, and if so, was the radar unit properly calibrated.

In other cases, it may be possible to plea bargain down a charge of reckless driving to a less onerous moving violation or a civil charge. Both options mean you will face less of a penalty and not wind up with a permanent criminal record.

Shalvoy Law serves clients in Newton and other nearby Connecticut communities.

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I had been arrested for driving while under suspension for DUI, which carries a mandatory minimum 30 days in jail. In spite of the objections from the prosecutor, Attorney Shalvoy was able to convince the Judge to waive the jail term and only imposed a fine.

– A client