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The Crime of Reckless Driving

September 7th, 2015 at 8:43 pm

illinois traffic attorney, Illinois defense lawyer, Illinois criminal lawyer,One of the most common traffic violations is reckless driving since so many of a driver’s actions while behind the wheel could be construed as reckless driving. Illinois law enforcement and the courts are strict when it comes to reckless driving charges because the driver’s actions may have:

  • Put others on the roadway at risk;
  • Resulted in property damage to another; or
  • Caused an accident where another person was injured or killed.

What is Reckless Driving?

 According to Section 625 ILCS 5/11-503, reckless driving occurs when a person drives a vehicle with a willful or wanton disregard for the safety of others, or it a person knowingly drives a vehicle so quickly up an inclined roadway, such as a hill or railroad crossing, as to cause the vehicle to become airborne.

The language of Illinois’ reckless driving statute is often broadly construed by law enforcement, and many drivers are ticketed, or even arrested on the spot, after driving at a high rate of speed, swerving between lanes or around other vehicles, tailgating, not using turn signals properly, or aggressively weaving in and out of traffic – all under the pretenses that the driver was operating the vehicle in a way that willfully or wantonly disregards the safety of others on the roadway.

Reckless Driving Charges Are Serious

Reckless driving charges should never be taken lightly. A reckless driving charge is at the very minimum a Class A misdemeanor. However, there are situations where the charges can be upgraded or enhanced. For instance:

  • When reckless driving causes bodily harm to a child or school crossing guard performing his or her crossing guard duties, the reckless driving charges are upgraded to a Class 4 felony;
  • When reckless driving causes great bodily harm or permanent disability or disfigurement of another, the charge is upgraded to aggravated reckless driving, which is a Class 4 felony; and
  • When the reckless driving causes great bodily harm or permanent disability or disfigurement of a child or school crossing guard performing his or her crossing guard duties, the charge is upgraded to aggravated reckless driving, and is a Class 3 felony.

A Reckless Driving Conviction on a Criminal Record

It is important to fight the reckless driving charges that are pending against you because a conviction results in no less than a misdemeanor, which means that you will have a criminal record if convicted. In addition to resulting in a criminal record, a reckless driving conviction can:

  • Result in a year’s worth of jail time;
  • Cost $2,500 in the payment of a fine;
  • Make it so that you are ineligible to have other arrests or charges against you expunged or sealed; and
  • Land you a significant amount of community service.

Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley

If you have received a citation for reckless driving, you need to fight the charges that are pending against you. Feel free to contact an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyer immediately. Call the Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley at (847) 394-3200 for a consultation.

 

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=062500050K11-503

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Written by Staff Writer

September 7th, 2015 at 8:43 pm

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