Some people facing reckless driving charges may wonder if their case will be dismissed if the police officer who charged them with this offense fails to show up at the court hearing. But in Virginia, getting a dismissal for this reason is rare.
When the Police Aren’t at Your Reckless Driving Hearing
In Virginia, a police officer is usually scheduled to appear for all of his cases in a specified court one day per month, although this rule will vary depending on the jurisdiction. Here’s how judges typically handle an officer’s failure to appear:
- Often, the officer will have a legitimate reason for not being able to come to the court hearing such as illness, death of a family member, or a public safety emergency. In these cases, the officer will usually contact the court by phone or faxing a letter explaining the reason that he cannot attend the hearing, and the judge will most likely continue your case on another date.
- If the officer does not appear and does not contact the court, the court clerk will attempt to contact him to schedule a new date. If the clerk cannot reach him, the judge could dismiss the case. However, this situation is not common. Police officers understand the importance of going to scheduled court hearings and could face disciplinary actions for not showing up and not calling the court beforehand.
An Experienced Reckless Driving Attorney Can Help You Build a Strong Defense
Retaining an experienced reckless driving attorney who can build a strong defense is the smart way to get your reckless driving charges possibly dismissed or reduced to a less serious charge. Here are just a few of the defenses that could be used:
- The radar or LIDAR equipment used to clock your speed was not properly calibrated.
- The police officer was not trained in the use of the radar or LIDAR or did not use it correctly.
- Your speedometer was not calibrated correctly, and you could not know you were exceeding the speed limit—a common reason that people are charged with reckless driving in Virginia.
These are just a few of the defenses or other strategies that a skilled lawyer will be able to use to defend you against reckless driving charges. Take advantage of my free initial consultation to learn what you can expect in your reckless driving case and how I can assist you. Scheduling an appointment is easy. Just fill out my convenient online form, or call my Petersburg office today.