If you are driving in the State of Michigan, you should do your best to drive carefully. Let us rehash your knowledge about Reckless driving in Michigan.
Reckless driving in the State of Michigan means that you could be charged with a misdemeanor and sentenced to up to 93 days in jail on top of a fine of up to $500.
You could face felony charges of up to 5 years in prison as well as up to $1,000 in fines. You could also face felony criminal charges of up to 15 years of potential prison time. You will also be required to pay a fine of between $2,500 and $10,000.
In the State of Michigan, a person can be convicted of “reckless driving” for driving a vehicle “in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property.”
There are two controlling words in this matter: the term willful that refers to the conduct that is purposeful or intentional rather than accidental, and the term wanton disregard that means that the person understood that the behavior was risky but decided to do the act anyway.
Here it is clear that there is reckless driving when the elements of knowledge and intention are proven by the prosecution.
For example in one reckless driving case where we handled the police officers for trying to convey our client of reckless driving because he failed to stop at a red light but our client used the defense that the red light was not red but green at the time of his driving.
The good thing is that the client presented dashcam footage and that served as the evidence used for him to get off the case.
The case of reckless driving in the state of Michigan comes with very specific penalties that one should be able to properly react to or pay. The consequences of reckless driving depend primarily on the circumstances but any person should accept that the following are the possible penalties involved:
Standard reckless driving
In the state of Michigan, there is such a thing as standard reckless driving. Generally, reckless driving is a misdemeanor in Michigan. If you are convicted of standard reckless driving you are facing 93 days in jail and/or a maximum $500 fine.
Reckless driving involving serious injuries.
Reckless driving would lead to one of two things – serious impairment of a body function and death. In the first instance, when a reckless driver caused serious impairment of body function he will be facing a penalty of up to five years in prison and/or $1,000 to $5,000 in fines.
Depending on his assessment, the judge must also order that the motorist’s vehicle be immobilized for up to 180 days or forfeited altogether.
Reckless driving involving death.
In the second instance, reckless driving may also involve death. A reckless driving offender who causes death to another person is guilty of a felony. The penalty involved in this matter is a penalty of up to 15 years in prison and/or $2,500 to $10,000 in fines.
The judge must also order that the motorist’s vehicle be immobilized for up to 180 days or forfeited altogether.
In the state of Michigan, there is also such a thing as careless driving. The act of careless driving is defined as driving in a careless manner that would likely endanger any person or any property but it is without wanton disregard of the risk involved or recklessness.
To reiterate reckless driving is considered reckless because the driver has knowledge of the risk involved in his behavior but still decided that the risk is something that he is willing to take while careless driving covers less conspicuous instances of bad driving.
Careless driving is not a felony or a misdemeanor but it is generally only a civil infraction. As such, it is reminded that motorists who are convicted of careless driving face a fine depending on certain factors as well as three points on their driving record.
Is it possible to be charged with reckless driving and Operating While Intoxicated?
Yes in the state of Michigan it is possible for a driver who has been charged with operating while intoxicated to also be charged with reckless driving. Of course the charges and how it is handled depend primarily on how good your lawyer is and this is where our law firm comes in.
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The article that you have read is based on general applications of the law. It is not legal advice and it is not to be construed as any legal consultation with the firm. No client-attorney relationship is created when you read the articles we have provided.
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