County Councilwoman, Karen Toles was stopped on the DC beltway in Late February after bring observed going over 100 miles per hour. At first she ignored the police officer following her, leading to a brief but tense stand-off when she finally acknowledged the officer’s request to pull over.
Upon exciting her vehicle, according to media reports, Toles loudly proclaimed her status as a Prince Georges County Council member. If she expected her county government position to get her better treatment from place that you or I might expect, she was proven right – at least initially.
Incredibly, Toles walked away from her high-speed beltway chase with a citation for an unsafe lane change and a $90 ticket. An outcry followed and the police faced intense scrutiny over their handling of the incident.
After further review, while defending their officer’s initial handling of the incident, the department slapped Toles with a reckless driving citation and a $500 fine.
Initially mum on the whole incident, Toles, under mounting pressure, issued a public apology. A week later, on March 12, she requested a hearing on the reckless driving case, which has been scheduled for April 20th in Prince George’s County General District Court.
Had Toles been stopped in Virginia, she wouldn’t have had a choice about wether to appear in court. Virginia’s reckless driving laws are some of the most severe in the country. Reckless Driving in Virginia is a Class 1 misdemeanor, with penalties similar to a DWI or Assault and Battery conviction.
In Virginia Toles reckless driving charge would mean a mandatory court visit and, given her driving record and excessive speed, she faced potential penalties of: up to 12 months in jail, up to a $2,500 fine, and a possible loss of her driving privileges for up to six months.
When she appears in court, Toles will likely attempt to get her reckless driving ticket dismissed or reduced. With the help of an experienced attorney she may have a good chance at success. We recommend that if you are charged with reckless driving in Virginia do not plead guilty with speaking to an attorney first.
The consequences can be severe.
Speak to an attorney about your specific circumstances before you commit to a guilty plea. The Gordon Law Firm is happy to offer a FAST, FREE CONSULTATION to anyone with a reckless driving charge in the jurisdictions we serve: Fairfax, Loudon or Prince William Counties.
We’ve helped hundreds of Virginians protect their driving privileges. I know we can help you too… Even if you’re not a county council member. We’ll do out best to understand your specific circumstances and present an aggressive defense that we believe with result in the best possible outcome for you