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The Virginia Speeding Ticket Game: UPDATED*** Login/Join 
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Picture of TigerDore
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Thanks for the advice.

quote:
Originally posted by wcb6092:
If you don't show up for court in Virginia on a criminal charge (reckless driving) another warrant will be issued for Failure to Appear. So then you will have 2 outstanding arrest warrants on file. If you get stopped in Virginia again,it will be an automatic arrest.

Call the Commonwealth Attorney's for Smyth County Virginia. This will be the office that prosecutes your case. See if they would be willing to knock it down to improper driving, or 79 in a 70 zone. if you agree to plead guilty and pay the fine and court costs.

The phone number is (276) 782-4042. The Commonwealth Attorney is Roy Evans and he is a reasonable man. I lived in that county for over 40 years.

Do not think this will just go away if you do not show up.
 
Posts: 4587 | Registered: September 26, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of TigerDore
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Thanks for the replies and especially the sound advice everybody.
 
Posts: 4587 | Registered: September 26, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of TigerDore
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I am fine with paying a fine. I am NOT fine with a bogus reckless driving charge on my record.

quote:
Originally posted by PASig:
It's Virginia, you're totally screwed.

Just pay it and move on, it's a waste of time and money to try and fight it.

I swear the entire state of VA is one giant speed trap, it's the only state I don't dare go one mph above the posted speed limit lest the trooper hiding behind every bush get me.
Roll Eyes
 
Posts: 4587 | Registered: September 26, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The Commonwealth Attorney has the authority to show discretion before a court ruling is made.

Virginia Code § 46.2-869. Improper driving; penalty.

Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this article, upon the trial of any person charged with reckless driving where the degree of culpability is slight, the court in its discretion may find the accused not guilty of reckless driving but guilty of improper driving. However, an attorney for the Commonwealth may reduce a charge of reckless driving to improper driving at any time prior to the court's decision and shall notify the court of such change. Improper driving shall be punishable as a traffic infraction punishable by a fine of not more than $500.


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You can only go so far any direction before you eventually drive off a cliff
 
Posts: 5804 | Registered: January 17, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of TigerDore
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Thank you.

quote:
Originally posted by wcb6092:
The Commonwealth Attorney has the authority to show discretion before a court ruling is made.

Virginia Code § 46.2-869. Improper driving; penalty.

Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this article, upon the trial of any person charged with reckless driving where the degree of culpability is slight, the court in its discretion may find the accused not guilty of reckless driving but guilty of improper driving. However, an attorney for the Commonwealth may reduce a charge of reckless driving to improper driving at any time prior to the court's decision and shall notify the court of such change. Improper driving shall be punishable as a traffic infraction punishable by a fine of not more than $500.
 
Posts: 4587 | Registered: September 26, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Delusions of Adequacy
Picture of zoom6zoom
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Definitely check into getting it reduced. I know a few folks who got it knocked down to "failure to obey a traffic sign" which was under a hundred bucks.

On a reckless charge, you definitely don't want to "just pay it". The long term consequences can be heavy.




I have my own style of humor. I call it Snarkasm.
 
Posts: 16176 | Location: Virginia | Registered: June 02, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of ChuckFinley
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I used to love driving through VA & never got a ticket. I avoid it now. I advised in a DC vacation thread to be careful, for exactly this reason.

You've gotten very good advice in this thread.

Hopefully he'll accept the lesser.




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"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience." -- C.S. Lewis
 
Posts: 4485 | Location: District 12 | Registered: June 16, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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[quote]If you don't show up for court in Virginia on a criminal charge (reckless driving) another warrant will be issued for Failure to Appear. So then you will have 2 outstanding arrest warrants on file. If you get stopped in Virginia again,it will be an automatic arrest.

Call the Commonwealth Attorney's for Smyth County Virginia. This will be the office that prosecutes your case. See if they would be willing to knock it down to improper driving, or 79 in a 70 zone, if you agree to plead guilty and pay the fine and court costs.

The phone number is (276) 782-4042. The Commonwealth Attorney is Roy Evans and he is a reasonable man. I lived in that county for over 40 years.

Do not think this will just go away if you do not show up.

Virginia Code § 46.2-869. Improper driving; penalty.

Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this article, upon the trial of any person charged with reckless driving where the degree of culpability is slight, the court in its discretion may find the accused not guilty of reckless driving but guilty of improper driving. However, an attorney for the Commonwealth may reduce a charge of reckless driving to improper driving at any time prior to the court's decision and shall notify the court of such change. Improper driving shall be punishable as a traffic infraction punishable by a fine of not more than $500.
 

Great advice just another reason to belong to Sig Forum.
 
Posts: 2512 | Location: MS GULF COAST | Registered: January 02, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Years ago, the same thing happened to me. The Trooper was a complete prick, probably the most obnoxious and arrogant police officer I had met in 40 years of police work.

I called his Sergeant and complained about his lack of professionalism to no avail. My next call was to a local attorney from the yellow pages.(they still had them back then). I told him I was just passing through and had been hit with a reckless driving charge (22 mph over). He took the case, entered an appearance. He made the Trooper show up in court to defend his actions. The attorney got the charge reduced to something like basic speeding. Naturally I lost and had to pay a fine to Virginia but the Reckless Driving charge was taken off my record.

Cost for Attorney about $500.00 well spent dollars and about $180 to Virginia.

All these years later, I have ill will towards Virginia and the State Troopers that enforce their draconian speeding laws.
 
Posts: 761 | Location: Windermere, Florida | Registered: February 11, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by TigerDore:
Last week I was pulled over by a Virginia (Chilhowie PD) police officer. He said I was going 82 in a 70 mph zone on the interstate. It was curious because I was getting passed by a Toyota Camry just as the PO hit his headlights and pulled out into traffic. The Toyota was still right in front of me when he pulled me over.


I'm betting that Toyota had Virginia tags. Va Police love picking on out of state folks.
 
Posts: 2387 | Registered: January 27, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of jhe888
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quote:
Originally posted by TigerDore:
Is this a scam set-up between the local judges and attorneys to grease the wheels of justice in small town VA? Should I pay one of these attorneys?


Yes, they are all in cahoots to ticket drivers and extract fines and fees. They all split the fines. The police get a cut, the town, the judge, and the cops.

It is not a scheme. The lawyers are trying to drum up business by scaring you with the worst case scenario.

Hire a lawyer and quit speeding.




The fish is mute, expressionless. The fish doesn't think because the fish knows everything.
 
Posts: 44350 | Location: Texas | Registered: February 10, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by 0658:
Years ago, the same thing happened to me. The Trooper was a complete prick, probably the most obnoxious and arrogant police officer I had met in 40 years of police work.

I called his Sergeant and complained about his lack of professionalism to no avail. My next call was to a local attorney from the yellow pages.(they still had them back then). I told him I was just passing through and had been hit with a reckless driving charge (22 mph over). He took the case, entered an appearance. He made the Trooper show up in court to defend his actions. The attorney got the charge reduced to something like basic speeding. Naturally I lost and had to pay a fine to Virginia but the Reckless Driving charge was taken off my record.

Cost for Attorney about $500.00 well spent dollars and about $180 to Virginia.

All these years later, I have ill will towards Virginia and the State Troopers that enforce their draconian speeding laws.


Revenue agents. That's all they are. Not to be confused with Police Officers.
 
Posts: 4366 | Registered: August 18, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We get these virginia threads twice a year or so. Jokingly i told the wife we should sticky the do not speed in virginia to the top. If you so much as fart over the speed limit as an out of state driver they will hunt you down with relentless persistence.
 
Posts: 3327 | Location: Virginia | Registered: December 23, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of billnchristy
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I got 4 tickets in 5 years in VA. One of them was for 57 in a 55.


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Posts: 17909 | Location: Lawrenceville GA | Registered: April 15, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of TigerDore
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I am pretty sure the Toyota did have VA tags.

quote:
Originally posted by Scurvy:
quote:
Originally posted by TigerDore:
Last week I was pulled over by a Virginia (Chilhowie PD) police officer. He said I was going 82 in a 70 mph zone on the interstate. It was curious because I was getting passed by a Toyota Camry just as the PO hit his headlights and pulled out into traffic. The Toyota was still right in front of me when he pulled me over.


I'm betting that Toyota had Virginia tags. Va Police love picking on out of state folks.
 
Posts: 4587 | Registered: September 26, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of TigerDore
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Good grief. I'll bet you could make useful posts here if you tried.

quote:
Originally posted by jhe888:
quote:
Originally posted by TigerDore:
Is this a scam set-up between the local judges and attorneys to grease the wheels of justice in small town VA? Should I pay one of these attorneys?


Yes, they are all in cahoots to ticket drivers and extract fines and fees. They all split the fines. The police get a cut, the town, the judge, and the cops.

It is not a scheme. The lawyers are trying to drum up business by scaring you with the worst case scenario.

Hire a lawyer and quit speeding.
 
Posts: 4587 | Registered: September 26, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of Sauer Kraut
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I worked in the D.C./Alexandria, VA area and drove from central NC for several years. Had a crash pad up in Alexandria. I would drive I-95 several times a month. I learned the hard way about speeding in Virginia. Same as you I was zapped for speeding/reckless driving while going with traffic. I was just the poor bastard that the deputy picked out of a crowd. 76 in a 55 mph zone on the interstate. Those speed limits have now been bumped to 65/70. But at the time I was going over 20 over the speed limit.

The whole freakin state is a speed trap/money generating scam. It's not just state troopers. The local sheriff's department and municipal police get in on the action too.

I used attorney Robert Battle He seems to have practically made a career out of defending "reckless driving" charges in Virginia. But he worked for me and the charge was around $600 if I remember correctly. I have no affiliation with him. He just made it very simple to have the charge reduced. At least look at his website. It has information about the racketeering industry of "speed enforcement" in Virginia.

I travel all over the country and still drive through Virginia quite a lot. I do not speed there, maybe 5 over and that's it. As others have said, I still harbor ill feelings toward those ass holes. It's all about the money. Anywho, good luck!
 
Posts: 458 | Registered: December 04, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This is a sore spot with me. I get the need for effective traffic enforcement. So write the guys that are way over the limit ( and I don't think 20 or so over the limit on an Interstate as way over the limit) and those that are driving like morons. But to write a guy for doing 57 in a 55 is too me, just pimpy. Like I said before, I signed up to be a Policeman, not a revenue agent. Most people will never have contact with the Police except for traffic stops. Treat them with respect and courtesy when you stop them and showing a little compassion would go a long way to creating good will between the Police and the citizens. Enforcing speed limits with an iron fist will do just the opposite.
 
Posts: 4366 | Registered: August 18, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Tigerdore,

My daughter, with MO plates by the way, was caught going over 80 on the highway in VA - I posted about this last year.

If the speed limit is 70 and your going 80, it is considered reckless driving, a criminal offense, and can be up to 1 year in jail and/or $1000 fine.

We hired an attorney and had our first court date. We sent a copy of my daughters clean DMV report to the attorney and the judge agreed to drop the charge to 79mph provided that at her upcoming 5/11/17 court date; a) we produce another clean MO DMV report, b) she produces a completion of 25 hours of community service letter, c) we pay court costs and fines.

We went this route because if you just pay the fine, she would have a criminal record.

When interviewing attornies via telephone, I asked all of them if this ridiculously punitive measure was a vestige of when the speed limit was 55mph as then 80mph or higher would have been 25mph over the limit. The answer was "no" from all of them.

Sounds like revenue generation system for the attornies and court system to me as 10mph over is considered "normal" in most areas of the country.
 
Posts: 1353 | Location: St. Louis, MO | Registered: November 24, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Too clever by half
Picture of jigray3
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As I understand it reckless driving is not just a traffic offense in VA, it is a criminal offense, specifically a Class 1 Misdemeanor punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a $2500 fine. I think you'll want an attorney for this one.

I also understand the police have the discretion to write a ticket for speeding, but can forego the reckless portion.




Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time, and it annoys the pig.
 
Posts: 9537 | Location: Richmond, VA | Registered: December 11, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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