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Reckless driving ticket...advice please

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
We own a Chevy Trailblazer SS (which is the sportier version of the trailblazer, it has the corvette motor in it.)

On Saturday my husband Will was driving back with his friend and came off the highway and onto a regular road while merging he was caught on radar doing 73 in a 45, the road was empty, but as he drove on after getting down to the speed limit flashing lights appeared and he pulled over to a lady cop who gave him a reckless, she didn't even talk to him, didn't ask if he knew how fast he was going, just took his details, went to her car, came back and gave him the ticket, he has a court date he has to go to on the 21st September.

We live in VA because we are here with the Airforce, the car is registered in VA but my husband is an Ohio resident and pays Ohio taxes.

The maximum fine is $2500 and jail time. right now we are scrimping our money, we are applying for my green card so I can stay here with him because I am English, and the cost of the forms have almost doubled, the most expensive form is $980, and there are others we are filling out which are less, we are also paying a lawyer to help us with this. so for us to get a fine of anykind is pushing us alot. we are only living on his pay check as I cant work legally GRRR!

Now he knows he was speeding but he didn't think he was going that fast, he came home after getting the ticket and just broke down in tears, because he knew that he had caused us alot of problems by getting this ticket, I am not angry about it, but I told him if I am ever in his shoes he better be just as understanding LOL!

So basically I was wondering id anyone has any advice, if they have been in this situation? any ideas would be appreciated. thanks!!!!
post #2 of 26
His speeds would definitely be considered wreckless driving around here. (anything over 10 miles an hour is - but that being said the radar guns can be off by a few miles- so most cops i believe won't write a ticked for wreckless driving unless it's gauged as 15 miles at least over the limit...which your husband was definitely doing. ( My fiance's a cop) So my only advice really is for him to just be more aware of the speed limit signs when he's driving in the future, and to take this ticket as a hard learned lesson to obey the law. It stinks, but hopefully it will make him more observant of the speed limits and keep him and other drivers safe in the future. There's not much he can do about the ticket he got as he was in the wrong and could have definitely put other people's lives at risk by not observing the proper speed limit. So the cop was definitely in the right to site him. I definitely woudn't want another driver going down the road speeding near me at that rate as it could put me in danger if i were nearby...so i think him getting the ticket (as much as it may hurt you guys financially) was the best thing that could happen to hopefully open his eyes to being a more responsible driver.
post #3 of 26
Thread Starter 
I completely agree that he was in the wrong, he said thats whats making him feel so crap because he knows if he was the cop he would have written him self a speeding ticket, he just couldn't believe he was going so much faster than the speed limit. Most people speed on the high way but he said he had been being so careful while he was on it, I think it didn't help that the cop had cleaned up an SUV accident the other night so she was making an extra point!

She also checked his priors, and he got a ticket on memorial day a year ago, we were driving back from Ohio, an 11 hour trip and the speed limit goes 65 to 55 and he was still going 70 because he hadn't taken his cruise control off.

So I guess lesson learned, dont go out on holiday weekends, and if you do stay under the speed limit

He just phoned me and said he is going to get his spedo checked to make sure that its not faulty.
post #4 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by My cat Mellow View Post
I completely agree that he was in the wrong, he said thats whats making him feel so crap because he knows if he was the cop he would have written him self a speeding ticket, he just couldn't believe he was going so much faster than the speed limit. Most people speed on the high way but he said he had been being so careful while he was on it, I think it didn't help that the cop had cleaned up an SUV accident the other night so she was making an extra point!

She also checked his priors, and he got a ticket on memorial day a year ago, we were driving back from Ohio, an 11 hour trip and the speed limit goes 65 to 55 and he was still going 70 because he hadn't taken his cruise control off.

So I guess lesson learned, dont go out on holiday weekends, and if you do stay under the speed limit

He just phoned me and said he is going to get his spedo checked to make sure that its not faulty.
Him getting his spedometer checked is definitely a good idea- because if it's broken he may be getting an innacurate reading and that could definitely be part of the problem.

I agree on the holiday weekend thing too! Colin was off yesterday (my fiance is a cop) but all of the other on duty officers had sobriety check points/etc set up all over the city, then when we drove down the road into the city limit of Memphis all of the memphis cops had their check points set up too! They pulled my aunt over on her way to my sister's house yesterday to do a sobriety check on her (she never drinks so it was funny)
post #5 of 26
My husband got speeding ticket in my car, a few years ago, he swore he wasn't speeding, His speedometer was out because he had put bigger tires on the car,
post #6 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by My cat Mellow View Post
She also checked his priors, and he got a ticket on memorial day a year ago, we were driving back from Ohio, an 11 hour trip and the speed limit goes 65 to 55 and he was still going 70 because he hadn't taken his cruise control off.
That's probably why she gave him a ticket with reckless driving because he shows a consistency for disregarding speed limits.

I hope everything goes ok for him and that the fine isn't as high as you say it could be.

I do hope that he has learned to keep his eye on the speed though. A ticket is minor compared to what can happen when you speed.
post #7 of 26
I feel bad for you and your hubby. It's very easy to speed after coming off a major highway where you've been going quite fast and not realize it. I've done it before myself.

The only thing I can suggest is to take it to court and hope the officer doesn't show up. Most police officers are A-okay but every once in awhile you get one that feels the need to prove how "powerful" they are. It's unfortunate your hubby was the victim of this particular officer. Sounds like she wouldn't have been interested in anything he had to say anyway.
post #8 of 26
Unfortunately I don't think there's anything he can do except pay the fine and/or do the time...whatever is required. He was going almost 30 mph over the speed limit!
The only way things might go his way is, like someone else said, if the cop doesn't show up to the court date or if his spedometer isn't working properly and he can prove it.
post #9 of 26
Depending on your jurisdiction, you may be able to get some leniency. But only an attorney would know for sure. I did get this site through an engine search for "speeding tickets Virginia". Good luck.
post #10 of 26
whenever I've gone to court for a speeding ticket I've been cleared of the ticket but put on probation for two years. As long as I dont have another ticket in that time frame, the indiscretion has been "forgiven".

I hope it applies in your situation. Definitey go to court.
post #11 of 26
Get a lawyer! I got a reckless ticket, and my lawyer got it reduced to speeding. I still got -6 pts on my liscense, but it would have been worse had it been reckless. Also, your husband might be able to get off on getting Driving School. Ask if you can be allowed to go to Driving School (you sit in a room for 8 hrs watching videos and then take a test at the end). Sometimes they'll let you do that.
post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yosemite View Post
I feel bad for you and your hubby. It's very easy to speed after coming off a major highway where you've been going quite fast and not realize it. I've done it before myself.

The only thing I can suggest is to take it to court and hope the officer doesn't show up. Most police officers are A-okay but every once in awhile you get one that feels the need to prove how "powerful" they are. It's unfortunate your hubby was the victim of this particular officer. Sounds like she wouldn't have been interested in anything he had to say anyway.
Victim?? there was no VICTIM here. he was speeding! If your going to speed/break the law on the road, then be prepared to pay for it if you get caught.

jsut cause it was a lady cop dosent mean SQUAT. she prob saw to guys in the truck, and didnt feel like making small talk. also with a prior speeding ticket, she KNOWS that he didnt learn the first time, and could be dangerous with speeding like he did, so she thought it jsut to give him a tougher ticket.

also,hate to say, but 99% of the time, the cop WILL show up, its the ticket getters that usually dont.

i admit, i have sped, but not to that extent. i stay within 5 miles of the speed limit, and by doing that NEVER gotten a speeding ticket. That and i have a clean license.
post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweet72947 View Post
Get a lawyer! I got a reckless ticket, and my lawyer got it reduced to speeding. I still got -6 pts on my liscense, but it would have been worse had it been reckless. Also, your husband might be able to get off on getting Driving School. Ask if you can be allowed to go to Driving School (you sit in a room for 8 hrs watching videos and then take a test at the end). Sometimes they'll let you do that.
that will work for a first time offender, but not for one with a prior speeding ticket.
post #14 of 26
usually, when i get a speeding ticket, i go to the courthouse & tell them i want to take defensive driving. but i've never had a ticket that expensive! anyway, it's worth calling & asking about, IMO.
post #15 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by laureen227 View Post
usually, when i get a speeding ticket, i go to the courthouse & tell them i want to take defensive driving. but i've never had a ticket that expensive! anyway, it's worth calling & asking about, IMO.
One of the reasons we have quit going to VA as much. Dont even want to risk it.
Most of the time the date the cop gives you on the ticket is one that they can attend, thats why most of the time if you change the date, they wont show up as often. But if the cop doesnt show, you dont always automatically get out of the ticket. I got pulled over 54 in a 35 at 11 PM at night, after I had been driving on the interstate doing 75 the entire day (only 5 over on the interstate we were on) But I got a very very nice cop, who let me get out of the car to get my purse that was locked in the trunk...LOL. He just gave me a warning. Big speedlimit drops like that are always hard! Hopefully you will be able to figure something out!
Good Luck!
post #16 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liza24 View Post
Victim?? there was no VICTIM here. he was speeding! If your going to speed/break the law on the road, then be prepared to pay for it if you get caught.

jsut cause it was a lady cop dosent mean SQUAT. she prob saw to guys in the truck, and didnt feel like making small talk. also with a prior speeding ticket, she KNOWS that he didnt learn the first time, and could be dangerous with speeding like he did, so she thought it jsut to give him a tougher ticket.

also,hate to say, but 99% of the time, the cop WILL show up, its the ticket getters that usually dont.

i admit, i have sped, but not to that extent. i stay within 5 miles of the speed limit, and by doing that NEVER gotten a speeding ticket. That and i have a clean license.
I have to admit I'm amazed at all the law-abiding citizens here. I have to confess I've sped many times, been caught a few. I don't speed in heavy traffic or change lanes unsafely, but yes I have and do speed.

28 over the speed limit is not a lot IMO when coming off an interstate and the OP said that her hubby had gotten down to the speed limit BEFORE the police pulled him over. So yes, I still maintain he was a victim of this particular police officer. Maybe she was trying to impress her boss!
post #17 of 26
I don't know if you'll be able to get out of the associated fees that VA just imposed or not given that you're residents of Ohio. However, if you didn't previously know, there have been fees imposed that will now cost you at least a $1000 more than the ticket itself. It's being fought by judges as unconstitutional but as of right now, it's still in effect. They will expect the first 1/3 to 1/2 of that payment *if* you are found guilty, on the day that you go to court.

I'm not sure if you included that on your original amount or not but I don't want you getting surprised by it, since it's going to be a huge smack in the face.

Okay, often if you go and talk to them at the courthouse (and I would, as one person suggested, attempt to get the date changed.. if you can swing it use a military excuse like he's got duty that day and can't make it). That reduces the chances that the officer will make it. Right now VA courts are hugely tied up due to the new fees and the fact that *everyone* is now fighting their tickets. Get an attorney. It's worth the investment and if he hasn't taken a driver's training course, he may still be eligible to do that, and it *may* reduce his ticket even if he's already had a ticket.. it won't help if he's already done the course, though. I'm fairly certain that it does not have to be your first ticket in order to take it.

Here's a link about the fines, and you'd have to look at the pdf they reference in the article for a list: http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com...ingTicket.aspx

This also has some good advice. http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com...et.aspx?page=1

Call your courthouse and talk to the secretaries at the portion of the courthouse where they take the fees and so forth. They'll have a good idea of what options may be available to you. Whatever you do, though, make sure you fight it.. and I think the attorney is worth the investment. If he can get it reduced even to a speeding ticket, he'll have paid for himself by the fact that you won't be stuck paying the extraneous Virginia fees. Given that he was slowing down, an attorney can *probably* get that reduced if he brings up the fact that he was already slowed down and doing the speed limit by the time the officer stopped him. I'd also mention the fact that he's in the military. That's enough to have someone look favorably on him if they're so inclined but not enough to irritate them if they're not.. I'd mention that you're *not* a resident of Virginia (which may get you out of the associated fees) and that your car is registered here because of being stationed here but your residence is actually Ohio.

Btw, I think you can get your visa changed to a work visa if you can get an employer to sponsor you. Whatever you do, though, make sure to keep your visa current. ICE is horrible these days and any infraction you don't take care of could get you thrown out of the country.

Keep us posted and lots of good luck heading your way!!
post #18 of 26
I didn't know Colin wasa cop.
post #19 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yosemite View Post
I have to admit I'm amazed at all the law-abiding citizens here. I have to confess I've sped many times, been caught a few. I don't speed in heavy traffic or change lanes unsafely, but yes I have and do speed.
I have a lead foot when I drive too. Not as bad now as when I was in my early 20's when I had no fear and thought I was invincible. I used to have a little Fiat Spider 5 speed and that little car could go really, really fast. I frequently had it up to 140 mph (that is not a typo) on the highways. I didn't know back then that you could actually lose your license for going that fast.

I'm fortunate though. I've only gotten one speeding ticket and that was about 10 years ago while driving in the city. I forget how fast I was going but the ticket was $70.00.
post #20 of 26
Is there any update on this situation??
post #21 of 26
The best advice would be to DEFINITELY fight the ticket. Do you all have Pointts there in the US? There are companies here that are ex cops that help you fight the ticket with technicalities.

Good luck!

Everyone speeds, so I don't think its a big deal that he was speeding.

Oh , I just realized this is an old thread....welp..any update?
post #22 of 26
28 mph over is like 45 km/ph - that is enough for points and possible suspension of license most places, Heather seems to have a lot of good advice that is state orientated, but like Nat said, we have ex-coppers and POINTS etc here who just fight vehicle related tickets that can usually help you for less than a lawyer.

When is the court date? Have they given you one yet?
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liza24 View Post
Victim?? there was no VICTIM here. he was speeding! If your going to speed/break the law on the road, then be prepared to pay for it if you get caught.
He was lucky he was stopped before he hurt himself or someone else.
post #24 of 26
He was already slowing down to meet the posted speed limit. I mean, we're talking about speeding here, not driving DUI, and coming down and merging from an off ramp from a highway. I guess he should have probably slowed down on the highway before he took the exit and backed up traffic up there so that when he hit the road he merged onto, he wasn't going faster than the speed limit (which, I have a feeling he hadn't even passed a *posted* sign yet).

And this not to say that all officers are this way, as I'm generally supportive but there *are* those who take some sort of twisted delight in "nailing" someone in any which way they can, just to be a butthead. They like the power and they abuse it.

Again, tha'ts not all, but there are a number of them.
post #25 of 26
Even though it is not a DUI, a reckless driving ticket is as serious as a DUI as far as points and affecting your license goes. If it were just a speeding ticket it would be much better, but reckless driving is very serious.

I hate to point out the effect on his insurance rate, but if your company finds out, you may be cancelled! They don't always find out, so I would be very careful not to even jaywalk for the next 3 years til you get out of that 3 year point period on your insurance policy.

Helene, former insurance underwriter
post #26 of 26
Fight it ... IF in fact the road was empty Reasonable and Prudent law would apply... Plus ask if the cruiser had a camera .... see IF he was slowing down to the NEW limit in most areas you have 20 or 30 FT PASSED the sign to get to the proper speed
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