Steelers Wide Receiver Antonio Brown Charged with Reckless Driving

On Thursday night, Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown was speeding through the Carolina Panthers secondary on his way to a 53-yard touchdown reception.  However, it was Brown’s speeding in his black Porsche earlier on Thursday morning that resulted in him being charged with reckless driving.  According to the police, Brown passed a police officer while allegedly driving over 100 mph in 45 mph speed limit zone.

The incident occurred in Ross Township, which is a suburb adjacent to Pittsburgh.  However, what type of penalty would brown be facing if he was charged with speeding 100 mph and reckless driving in North Carolina.  First of all, although both of these charges are related to speeding, both of these North Carolina traffic charges are considered misdemeanors under North Carolina criminal law.

Let’s consider the speeding ticket with respect to North Carolina traffic laws.  Under North Carolina General Statute 20-141(j1),  “a person who drives a vehicle on a highway at a speed that is either more than 15 miles per hour more than the speed limit established by law for the highway where the offense occurred or over 80 miles per hour is guilty of a class 3 misdemeanor.”  Under North Carolina law, a class 3 misdemeanor is punishable by up to 20 days in jail and a maximum fine of $200.  More importantly, a North Carolina conviction for excessive speeding will result in a mandatory suspension of your North Carolina drivers license.

Let’s also consider the charge of reckless driving with respect to North Carolina traffic laws.  Under North Carolina General Statute 20-140(a), a person is guilty of reckless if he or she:

(1)  “drives any vehicle upon a highway or any public vehicular area carelessly and heedlessly in willful or wanton disregard of the rights or safety of others”  or (2)  “drives any vehicle upon a highway or any public vehicular area without due caution and circumspection and at a speed or in a manner so as to endanger or be likely to endanger any person or property”.

If you are  charged with reckless driving in North Carolina, you are facing a class 2 misdemeanor which is punishable by up to  60 days in jail and a maximum of  $1,000..  With a North Carolina reckless driving conviction, you also face a penalty of four points on your driver’s license which could potentially lead to a significant increase in the rate of your car insurance or a suspension of your license depending on your driving record

So what are your options if you charged in North Carolina with reckless driving and/or a high speed North Carolina speeding ticket?

If you are charged with a North Carolina speeding ticket or traffic ticket in Winston-Salem, or one of the surrounding areas, please call us today at (336) 725-6559 for a free consultation with an experienced Winston-Salem traffic attorney.  Our office is conveniently located in Winston-Salem, and we handle North Carolina speeding tickets and traffic tickets in the following counties:  Forsyth, Davie, Yadkin, Davidson, Guilford, and Stokes.

 

“My license has been indefinitely suspended. What can I do to get my license back?”

Perhaps you have received THAT letter – the one from the DMV which says your license is scheduled for an indefinite suspension.  What has caused you to receive this letter, and what should be your next step?

For most people, the indefinite suspension happens for two reasons:  (1) you failed to appear (FTA) at your scheduled court appearance for a a North Carolina traffic offense or (2) you failed to comply (FTC) with the monetary obligations for a North Carolina traffic ticket that was previously resolved.

Your failure to appear or your failure to pay can have serious consequences which lead to the suspension of your license.  What most people don’t realize, however, is that your North Carolina license isn’t immediately suspended for either reason.  For example, when you initially miss your scheduled court appearance, your ticket is marked as “called and failed”.  As long as your ticket is rescheduled within 20 days, the DMV will not be notified, and thus, you will never get the dreaded, aforementioned letter.

The problem is that most people do not reschedule their North Carolina traffic ticket within 20 days, which then leads to the DMV being notified, and a “failure to appear” being entered.   At that point, their license is still not suspended, however they must now resolve the case within 60 days.  Otherwise, their license will be suspended at 12:00 a.m. on the 60th day.

What I have discovered is that many people confuse resolving the case with rescheduling the case.  As a result, they have the mistaken belief that rescheduling the case halts the suspension process.   Once the “failure to appear” is entered, the case must be rescheduled, disposed, and all applicable court costs, fine, and fees must be paid prior to the date and time indicated in the DMV letter.

The process for suspension is similar when North Carolina traffic tickets are not paid in a timely manner.  Once the speeding ticket or other North Carolina traffic offense is resolved, you must pay the ordered court costs, fine, and applicable fees by the ordered compliance date.  Normally, if you fail to pay within 20 days of that compliance date, the DMV will be notified and a “failure to comply” will be entered.  Once again, the DMV will send a letter of notice which indicates that the person’s North Carolina license will be suspended unless the total amount due is not paid within 60 days.  Once the “failure to comply” is entered, an additional fee of $50.00 will be owed.

Therefore, if your North Carolina license is suspended, or if you have received a North Carolina speeding ticket or some other type of citation for a North Carolina traffic offense, your best option is to call an attorney who is experienced and knowledgeable about North Carolina speeding and traffic tickets.  By hiring an attorney, you may be able to have this case resolved without ever appearing in court.  In addition, you don’t have to worry about missing work to appear, and your attorney will appear to make sure that you don’t receive a failure to appear.

An experienced traffic attorney, with experience in North Carolina traffic law, will guide you through this process to make sure that all of your rights are being protected and that all of your possible defenses are being asserted.  Please call us at (336) 725-6559 and schedule a free consultation with a Winston-Salem traffic lawyer to assist you.  Our office is located for your convenience in downtown Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

NBA Player Charged with Reckless Driving

For the second time in ten years, Cleveland Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith has been charged with reckless driving. In 2007, he was also charged with reckless driving, and one of his friends died in that incident. In 2009, Smith pleaded guilty, and as part of his sentence, he was ordered to serve 24 days in jail and to perform 500 hours of community service.  In his most recent charge, Smith has pleaded not guilty.

In North Carolina, reckless driving can also have serious consequences. Although an active sentence is unlikely in most circumstances, this charge is a class 2 misdemeanor which carries a maximum sentence of 60 days in jail. In addition, a conviction for reckless driving will result in four DMV points and a likely increase in your insurance rate.

If you are charged with reckless driving in Winston-Salem, Forsyth County, North Carolina or one of the surrounding counties, you need an experienced North Carolina traffic attorney to handle your case.   An experienced Winston-Salem traffic attorney, with experience in North Carolina traffic law, will guide you through this process to make sure that all of your rights are being protected and that all of your possible defenses are being asserted.  Please call us at (336) 725-6559 and schedule a free consultation with a Winston-Salem traffic lawyer to assist you.  Our office is located for your convenience in downtown Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

“My license is suspended for a missed court date for a speeding ticket. Can I get a limited privilege?”

If your license is suspended for either a missed court (Failure to Appear) or not paying a fine (Failure to Comply), you must resolve these issues in order to obtain a license.  Limited privileges are generally available for people whose licenses have been suspended due to a some convictions for Driving While Impaired, a conviction for certain “high speed” cases, and some other limited convictions.

If the suspension is the result of not appearing in court or not paying the the fines, costs, or fees associated with a traffic ticket, that type of suspension is an indefinite suspension, which means that the suspension has not been establish for a certain or designated period of time.

When an indefinite suspension has occurred, you need an experienced Winston-Salem traffic attorney to review your DMV driving record to determine the best route for assisting you with resolving these issues which are causing the suspension.

Therefore, if you want to get your license back or obtain your license for the first time, please call us today at (336) 725-6559 for a free consultation.  Our office is located in downtown Winston-Salem, but in addition to handling traffic tickets in Forsyth County, we also handle North Carolina traffic tickets in the following counties:  Davie, Davidson, Guilford, and Yadkin.