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Why drivers need to think carefully about reckless driving charges

On Behalf of | Apr 4, 2023 | Serious Traffic Tickets

Many people have an automatic response to any kind of traffic offense. They assume that they should just plead guilty and pay their ticket rather than try to defend themselves. There is a very common assumption among drivers that it is not worth the investment to fight back against allegations of a significant traffic infraction.

However, traffic offenses don’t just result in fines. Sometimes, they can lead to jail time or cost someone their driver’s license. Additionally, having points on someone’s license could mean they lose their driving privileges in the future or have to pay substantially more for liability insurance coverage.

Reckless driving is more than just a basic ticket, and most people facing allegations of reckless behavior at the wheel benefit from presenting a defense to the charges against them.

Reckless driving is a misdemeanor offense

Colorado does not treat reckless driving as a traffic citation but rather as a misdemeanor criminal offense. Anyone who pleads guilty to reckless driving will have a criminal record that will show up whenever they apply for a new job. The reckless driving charges can affect someone’s eligibility for a commercial license and other professional opportunities.

The conviction itself put someone at risk. In addition to the financial penalties people expect after a traffic infraction, they will also be at risk of up to 90 days in state custody. For many people, fighting back against a reckless driving charge is a better option than pleading guilty.

How does one fight reckless driving charges?

What is truly reckless is often a subjective matter. What seems highly unsafe to one person may seem only questionable to another. A police officer’s interpretation of events could therefore be subject to challenge by a defendant.

They could present an explanation, like a medical emergency, that explains their driving habits. They could also provide an alternate version of events that helps show they didn’t act with disregard for the safety of others. What an officer claims someone did at the wheel can have a major influence on the best defense strategy. People could challenge everything from the validity of a traffic stop to the accuracy of someone’s recorded speed at the time of the interaction.

Those who fight against reckless driving charges could benefit from a reduction in charges or could potentially avoid any penalties whatsoever. Mounting an appropriate response to a traffic citation with the assistance of a legal professional could benefit both the driver who has been accused of violating the law and those who depend on them for income or transportation.