A very common charge in Virginia is Reckless Driving. This charge is a Class 1 Misdemeanor, which carries a possible sentence of 1 year of jail time, and a fine of up to $2500. However, Improper Driving is a possible alternative outcome in Reckless Driving cases.
Va. Code 18.2-869 says:
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.
This is not an offense that a driver would originally be charged with, but is an alternative outcome, along with other civil infractions, that should be considered in a Reckless Driving case, along with other possible mitigations and defenses that should be raised in any Reckless Driving case.
Unlike Reckless Driving which is a criminal misdemeanor, Improper Driving is a simple infraction punishable only by a fine of up to $500.
Contact our Northern Virginia Criminal Defense Attorneys to learn more about how we can defend you.
We practice in Arlington, Alexandria, Prince William, Loudoun, and Fairfax, Virginia.