Expert DC Criminal Traffic Lawyer
Need legal representation for criminal traffic cases in DC? Hire a skilled DC criminal traffic lawyer for expert guidance and defense. Contact us today.
Experienced Traffic Attorney in DC
In the District of Columbia, driving without a valid permit can give rise to three potential charges. The charges are No Permit, Operating after Suspension (“OAS”), and Operating After Revocation (“OAR”).
The charge of No Permit carries a maximum penalty of 90 days or a $300 fine while Operating after Suspension (or Revocation) has a maximum sentence of 1 year and/or a $5,000 fine. The difference between the 2 is more about what the government can prove than specific conduct.
In addition to driving without a valid license offense, several additional traffic offenses can get you arrested. In DC, there are crimes for reckless driving, fleeing law enforcement, and speeding over 30 miles per hour. These are offenses where in addition or in lieu of giving you a citation, the police may put you in handcuffs and arrest you.
If you have been charged with any of these offenses, hiring a qualified DC criminal traffic lawyer is necessary. An effective traffic defense attorney will have a comprehensive understanding of DC traffic laws, as well as an in-depth knowledge of the local criminal court process. An experienced and knowledgeable attorney can assist you in navigating the complexities of your case and provide valuable insight into potential outcomes.
At Scrofano Law, we proudly provide our clients with the highest quality legal representation in DC. We are committed to helping you fight criminal traffic charges and protect your rights. Whether you need assistance fighting a traffic ticket, clearing up your driving record, or resolving any other traffic infraction or criminal charge, our experienced DC criminal traffic lawyers can help. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
Reckless Driving and Speed Over 30
Other common arrestable traffic violations include reckless driving and speeding over 30 miles per hour over the posted speed limit. Both offenses are misdemeanors. Both crimes carry 12 points and result in losing driving privileges in DC if convicted.
The maximum penalty for a reckless driving charge is three months in jail and/or a $300 fine. For speed over 30 miles per hour, the penalty is 90 days in jail and/or a $300 fine. The prosecutor will sometimes offer diversion in these types of cases.
In some instances, the government may offer something called a “deferred sentencing agreement.” In a deferred sentencing agreement, the person charged must plead guilty. The court then defers sentencing for six months to 1 year.
During that time, if the person charged jumps through some hoops—like paying fines, taking a traffic safety course, or completing community service—at sentencing, the government will not oppose the withdrawal of the guilty plea. It is basically like a contract with the government, and if the person completes the agreement, the government will dismiss the case.
In some limited cases, the government may offer a deferred prosecution agreement. That is similar to a deferred sentencing agreement with one key difference—the defendant does not have to plead guilty.
In those cases, the government simply postpones the prosecution and allows the defendant to jump through some hoops—community service, taking a traffic safety course, etc. The government dismisses the case if the defendant completes the conditions and does not get rearrested.
Who Prosecutes Traffic Offenses?
The Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia (“OAG”) prosecutes criminal traffic offenses in the District of Columbia. Because DC is not a state, many crimes are charged by the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. The OAG is the local prosecuting agency that the DC City Council funds. They often treat traffic offenses seriously because they have limited jurisdiction over prosecuting crimes in DC.
Other OAG Offenses
Other common traffic offenses include possession of an open container of alcohol (“POCA”) in a vehicle or out in public. Since marijuana decriminalization was passed in 2014, the OAG now prosecutes smoking marijuana in public offenses in traffic court.
Like POCA, smoking marijuana in public carries a maximum penalty of 90 days and/or a $500 fine. Drinking in public, disorderly conduct, and fleeing are also common traffic crimes charged in DC Superior Court. Fleeing is a severe traffic violation with a maximum penalty of 180 days and/or a $1,000 fine and 12 points with DC DMV if convicted.
There is also a felony for fleeing when someone is injured or property is destroyed. That offense, like all felonies, is prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.
How Can a DC Criminal Traffic Lawyer Help?
A DC criminal traffic lawyer can provide valuable assistance if you face criminal charges related to traffic violations in Washington, DC. Here are some ways they can help:
Legal Expertise: A DC criminal traffic lawyer has in-depth knowledge of the local traffic laws, regulations, and court procedures. They can explain the charges against you, the potential penalties, and the available legal options.
Negotiate with the Prosecutor: Your lawyer can negotiate with the prosecutor to try and get a favorable plea deal or reduced charges. They can also represent you in court and fight to get the charges dismissed or reduced.
Protect Your Rights: A DC criminal traffic lawyer must protect your rights and defend you against unfair or unjust prosecution. They can ensure the police followed all procedures correctly when making the arrest, including any applicable Fourth Amendment rights.
With the help of an experienced DC traffic attorney, you can protect your rights and defend yourself against the charges. Your lawyer can help you fight the charges, minimize the penalties, and avoid a criminal record.
Hiring an Experienced DC Traffic Lawyer
Going to court for a criminal case can be a scary thing. Most people who have never been arrested have no idea what to expect in the criminal justice system. Accordingly, hiring a qualified DC traffic attorney is essential to help you navigate the system.
At Scrofano Law PC, we have represented hundreds of people in Washington, DC, charged with criminal traffic offenses. Our experience extends to all types of traffic offenses. We have successfully negotiated reduced charges, dismissals, and diverted cases. In some instances, we have been able to get the charges dismissed outright without a plea agreement.
We aim to protect your driver’s license and keep you out of jail. If you are arrested for a criminal traffic offense, you must speak to a qualified criminal defense lawyer who can advise you on your rights. Contact Scrofano Law PC today for a consultation. We can help you understand the legal system and fight for your rights. Let us use our expertise to protect your future.
Learn about traffic crimes like DUI and Reckless driving in Virginia.
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