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Criminal Traffic Offenses
There are some driving offenses that are far more serious than a simple ticket. These offenses can result in a criminal record and even jail time. If you are facing criminal driving charges like reckless driving, our attorneys can help.
The laws surrounding our behavior on the roadway are typically pretty clear cut. Reckless and careless driving, however, are often open to interpretation.Charged with a crime in Iowa? Please call (888) 259-6838.
You may get pulled over on suspicion of reckless driving and not even be certain of what you did wrong. Unfortunately, ignorance isn’t a defense. However, because the laws are open to interpretation, we could argue that your driving behavior was not erratic or dangerous at all and perhaps deserved a ticket rather than a criminal charge.
There are several criminal traffic offenses worth noting. Some of the more common, I will brief you on here. But if you are facing any criminal charges, call for a consultation.
Reckless Driving – Laws & Penalties
Reckless driving is probably the most frequently charged criminal driving offense under Iowa law. It is briefly defined as driving with a willful or wanton disregard for the safety or people or property.
This offense is considered a simple misdemeanor and is punishable by up to 30 days in jail and $625 in fines.
Ref: IA. St. §321.277
Having become more popular in the past several years, there has been an increase in the number of drag racing charges. If you are accused of racing on the roadways you may be charged with drag racing, a simple misdemeanor.
Like reckless driving, drag racing is punishable by up to 30 days in jail and fines reaching $625.
Ref: IA. St. §321.278
Iowa Careless Driving – Laws & Penalties
Careless driving is not considered a crime but instead is a traffic offense. I wanted to point out the similarities between this offense, drag racing, and reckless driving. Sometimes, depending on the circumstances, we may be able to get your reckless driving or racing charges reduced.
Careless driving occurs when you:
- create unnecessary tire squealing or skidding upon acceleration or stopping,
- Simulate a race,
- Cause any wheels to lose contact with the ground, or
- Cause the vehicle to turn abruptly or sway.
Ref: IA. St. §321.277A
Eluding Pursuing Law Enforcement
If you are signaled to pull over by law enforcement, you are required to do just that. Police are required to use both a visual and audible signal. If they do this and you fail to stop, you could face eluding charges.
That doesn’t mean they are always fair about this. It could be that you were simply looking for a safe place to pull over, and you were unfairly charged with failure to stop for the police.
In most cases, eluding or attempting to elude is an aggravated misdemeanor punishable by up to 2 years in jail and fines of $6250.
However, if you go over 25 mph over the speed limit or if someone is harmed in the act, you could face Class D felony charges and 5 years in prison.
Ref: IA St. §321.279
Get a Legal Consultation on Your Criminal Traffic Offense
Not all driving offenses are a simple slap on the wrist and a fine. When facing criminal charges, you’re likely to need some assistance.
If you are facing charges like this, call today to see how we can assist you in getting the best possible outcome in court.