As a criminal defense lawyer, it is crucial to provide clients with accurate information about the legal consequences they may face. One question that often arises is whether speeding can lead to criminal charges in the state of Georgia.
While speeding is typically considered a traffic violation, there are circumstances in which it can result in criminal charges such as reckless driving.
In this blog post, we will explore the various aspects of speeding laws in Georgia and shed light on potential criminal charges, as well as strategies for building a strong defense.
Understanding Speeding Laws in Georgia
In Georgia, the laws regarding speeding are outlined in the Georgia Code Title 40, Chapter 6, Article 7. These laws establish speed limits for different types of roads and provide a framework for law enforcement officers to enforce these limits.
It is important to note that exceeding the posted speed limit is generally considered a traffic offense, punishable by fines, points on your driving record, and increased insurance premiums.
Potential Criminal Charges
While most speeding violations are treated as traffic offenses, certain circumstances can elevate the charge to a criminal offense. One such charge is reckless driving, which can be applicable if your speed is significantly higher than the posted limit or if your driving endangers others.
Reckless driving in Georgia is a misdemeanor offense, carrying potential penalties such as fines, probation, license suspension, and even jail time.
The following are some of the penalties you may face when charged for speeding:
- Fines: The court may impose fines, which can range from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars, depending on the severity of the offense.
- License Suspension: A conviction for reckless driving can lead to a driver’s license suspension. The length of the suspension will depend on the details of the case and the driver’s prior record.
- Probation: The court may order a period of probation, during which you must adhere to certain conditions, such as attending driver improvement programs, completing community service, or refraining from further traffic violations.
- Jail Time: In more severe cases, a judge may sentence an individual to serve jail time. The duration of the jail sentence can vary, but it is typically limited to a few days or weeks for a first-time offense. Repeat offenses or cases involving aggravating factors may result in longer sentences.
Building a Strong Defense
If you have been charged with a criminal offense related to speeding, it is essential to build a strong defense. Here are a few strategies that a criminal defense lawyer may employ:
Challenging the Evidence
Your attorney may analyze the evidence against you, including police reports, witness statements, and any video footage available. They will look for any inconsistencies or errors that could weaken the prosecution’s case.
Questioning the Traffic Stop
Your lawyer may examine the circumstances leading to the traffic stop. If there were procedural irregularities or violations of your rights during the stop, it may be possible to challenge the legality of the stop itself, which could result in the exclusion of evidence.
Investigating Equipment Accuracy
Speeding charges often rely on radar or laser devices to measure a vehicle’s speed. Your lawyer may investigate whether the equipment was properly calibrated, maintained, and used correctly by law enforcement officers.
Any doubts about the accuracy of the speed-measuring equipment could cast doubt on the validity of the charges.
Exploring Plea Bargains
Depending on the circumstances of your case, your attorney may negotiate with the prosecution for a plea bargain. This could involve reducing the charges to a non-criminal offense, such as a traffic violation, which may result in lesser penalties.
Criminal Charges for Speeding? Call the Experienced Criminal Defense Attorneys at SHElaw firm® Today!
While speeding is generally considered a traffic violation in Georgia, it can escalate to a criminal charge, particularly if it involves reckless driving. Understanding the potential consequences and building a strong defense is essential.
By working with an experienced criminal defense lawyer, you can navigate the legal system effectively and increase your chances of achieving a favorable outcome.
Remember, every case is unique, so consulting with an attorney who specializes in Georgia traffic and criminal law is crucial to protect your rights and achieve the best possible result in your situation.
That is why you need to call the knowledgeable criminal defense attorneys at SHElaw firm® today. We know the criminal laws in Georgia and will fight to get the best outcome for you. Call the office today at 470-378-1162.