Most people think of a speeding ticket as an annoyance requiring them to plead guilty and pay a fine or spend time in court challenging the ticket. They might think higher insurance rates are the worst thing that could come of the citation.
However, in some scenarios, speeding can be a criminal offense, meaning a conviction leads to a criminal record and penalties. If you were charged with criminal speeding, you need representation from a skilled attorney.
Contact a New River criminal speeding lawyer if you face these charges. Grand Canyon Law Group will build a vigorous defense to protect you and your way of life.
Arizona Revised Statute §28-701.02 is the statute that criminalizes speeding in some circumstances. The law makes it a crime to go 35 miles per hour or faster when approaching a school zone. Driving 20 miles per hour over the posted limit in a business or residential district could result in a criminal speeding ticket, and driving more than 85 miles per hour anywhere in the state is criminal speeding.
An excessive speed conviction counts as a criminal conviction. It will appear in criminal background checks and could become an issue when a driver applies for certain jobs, housing, educational programs, and volunteer opportunities. Working with a skilled New River attorney is the best way to avoid the repercussions of a criminal speeding conviction.
Police do not typically arrest drivers for excessive speed unless other circumstances warrant detention. Usually, police issue a ticket requiring the driver to appear at a stated date, time, and place for an arraignment.
A driver without representation must enter a plea at the arraignment in person. Our local criminal speeding lawyers could file a Notice of Appearance entering the driver’s not guilty plea, meaning the driver would not have to appear in court. The court would cancel the arraignment and schedule an initial pre-trial conference.
The pre-trial conferences allow the prosecutor and defense to negotiate a disposition to the charge. The defense could request evidence like police bodycam footage, information about the equipment the police used to determine the driver’s speed, and the officer’s credentials to use the equipment. If the defense can find grounds to challenge the police procedures or the accuracy of the speed reading, a prosecutor might drop the criminal charge.
Criminal speeding is a Class 3 misdemeanor, the least severe category of criminal charges. Someone convicted of criminal speeding faces the potential of 30 days in jail, a $500 fine plus surcharges, and one year of probation. They also receive three points on their driver’s license.
Jail time is not mandatory for a Class 3 misdemeanor, and many offenders avoid any jail time upon a criminal speeding conviction. However, some judges habitually impose jail time if the driver’s speed exceeds a certain threshold. Our attorneys in New River can offer mitigating evidence to convince a judge that jail time is not appropriate for a specific speeding case.
In many cases, we can resolve the matter without a criminal conviction. Prosecutors and judges sometimes agree to drop a criminal speeding case to a civil speeding ticket if the accused attends traffic survival school, pays a fine, engages in community service, or agrees to some other sanction.
Sometimes, a speeding ticket is more than an inconvenience. A criminal speeding conviction could affect you for the rest of your life. You must take the charges seriously and contact a New River criminal speeding lawyer as soon as possible.
A skilled defense attorney could resolve the matter while minimizing the impact on your life. If you got a ticket for excessive speed, contact Grand Canyon Law Group today to discuss your case.