Arizona Reckless Driving
Reckless Driving Laws in Arizona
Reckless Driving in Arizona is a class 2 misdemeanor. This means that if convicted, you could be punished by up to 4 months in jail and face fines and fees of up $750. When the court enters a conviction for reckless driving, the Arizona Motor Vehicle Division assess additional consequences, including 8 points being assessed to your driving record, the requirement to complete a Traffic Survival School course (TSS), and a possible license suspension. The Court may order the forfeiture of your license and suspend your driving privileges for up to 90 days.
A second conviction for reckless driving with 24 months will result in a class 1 misdemeanor, with a potential for punishment of up to 6 months in jail, fines and fees and $2500 plus surcharges. Upon receipt of a second conviction, the MVD will revoke your driving privileges.
Do I need a Reckless Driving Lawyer?
Many people contact our firm after they have been charged with a reckless driving violation wondering how they could have possibly been cited for this violation. After all, their driving certainly was not “reckless” by the common understanding of the phrase. If this is the case and you do not want to simply plead guilty to the crime and face the consequences detailed above, it is likely that you need a reckless driving lawyer to assist you in winning your case.
In Arizona, the law says that a person is guilty of reckless driving if they are driving a vehicle in “reckless disregard for the safety of persons or property.”
The key question in every reckless driving case is whether the person’s conduct truly amounted to “recklessness.” Many people believe that certain driving habits or reckless, and many do not. In Arizona, this is a question that is left up to the jury. Everyone charged with a reckless driving crime is entitled to a jury of their peers. At trial, the evidence and our defenses are presented to the jury, and the jury can determine what is or what is not “reckless” driving.
Defenses used in reckless driving must be comprehensive. First, to address the observational components of the case, our office generally requests the following information from the state:
- Copies of the police report and officer notes
- Dashcam footage from the police vehicle
- On-body camera footage from the officer
- 911 call recordings
- Audio records
- Witness statements
- GPS records from the police vehicle if relevant
- Any other materials that would independently corroborate the officer’s statements.
With these materials, we are able to reconstruct what the officer claims happened in the incident.
We also look to request items that detail our client’s position relative to the allegations. For example, what is our client’s familiarity with her vehicle? Does the vehicle have any hazardous or malfunctioning components? Is the vehicle a high performance vehicle? Does our client have experience driving this vehicle? Were there any additional traffic maneuvers present, such as unsafe lane change, following too closely, speeding, wide turns, etc., that would contribute to the recklessness? Has our client attended any driving courses recently or have any special skillsets or training? These are just a sampling of a wide variety of questions that must be asked in order to frame the incident properly.
By gathering this evidence and asking these questions, the team at the R&R Law Group has had success all over the state in re-framing the officer’s inaccurate allegations to show that there was not, in fact, any reckless driving. Instead, the charges can be reduced to more appropriate violations, such as a civil speeding tickets or other similar offenses. Contact the R&R Law Group today to discuss and we can review your reckless driving charges and develop the right strategy for you.