THREE CASES IN THREE JURISDICTIONS 120 MPH OR GREATER NO JAIL
Driving 120 MPH or Greater Usually Results in Jail Time in Virginia
Disclaimer: Every case is unique and each case result depends on a number of factors unique to each case. Past results cannot guarantee or predict future results. In fact, each one of these results are HIGHLY unusual given the results.
Consider the case of Washington Nationals’ outfielder Jason Werth, who served five days in jail for driving 105 mph in Virginia.
Virginia treats reckless driving seriously, and active jail time is common over 100 mph. Some jurisdictions impose jail starting at 90 mph. Sometimes it is possible to get no jail for driving as high as 120 mph.
THREE CASES AT 120 MPH or GREATER, NO JAIL
PRINCE GEORGE, VIRGINIA NO JAIL 120 MPH
My client in Prince George was charged with driving 120 mph. The judge sitting in court that day gives jail starting at 90-95 mph depending on the facts of the case. The prosecutor did get involved in the case. After much communication, I convinced the prosecutor to agree to try my client in her absence so she would not need to appear in court. If I did not have that agreement in place, the judge would normally issue a warrant for failing to appear in court. The judge accepted that agreement and convicted my client in her absence, but she did not serve any jail sentence which was the goal.
DINWIDDIE, VIRGINIA NO JAIL 127 MPH
This case featured a client who had an absolutely atrocious driving record, with multiple prior reckless driving convictions. I knew the prosecutor at the time who was handling the case and I was able to present some very good evidence to help minimize what they did. My client did appear in court, which is customary at that speed. I was able to work out a plea agreement with the prosecutor whereby my client agreed to plead guilty to reckless driving, but he did not serve any jail time. The judge accepted the plea agreement and my client did not go to jail.
BRUNSWICK, VIRGINIA NO JAIL 121 MPH
In some ways this case had the best facts. My client was a student with a perfect driving record. However, the prosecutor would only offer to let my client plead guilty and get a 15 day jail sentence. My client, and his family, were not going to accept that plea offer. The judge who was sitting in court would have absolutely given active jail time, probably in the range of 10-30 days.
The key to this case was diligence. I scrutinized the officer’s calibration report. I noticed that the calibration report was dated exactly six months prior to the offense date. That would make the calibration valid. However, although the report was dated on a valid date, the body of the report indicated that the report was generated six months prior, but the actual calibration test was done MORE THAN six months before the offense date, which means the calibration was NOT VALID!
I went back to the prosecutor and asked him if he noticed the calibration. He said it was done exactly six months prior. I pointed out that the actual test was done more than six months out and so the calibration was not valid. The officer turned out to be pretty worked up by this turn of events. However, it did not matter and once again my client was able to avoid jail.
EVERY CASE TRULY IS UNIQUE AND HINGES ON A NUMBER OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE
Past results do not guarantee or predict future results and these three cases prove that. Each case was completely unique and I was able to leverage something from every case to avoid jail. That is HIGHLY unusual and I am the only attorney I know of who has been fortunate enough to have three clients driving 120 MPH or greater all avoid jail. These types of cases are very serious and each case involved a lot of time and effort to achieve the results. However, with the right set of facts it is possible to get unusual results sometimes!