California drivers must be diligent when they decide to pass another driver
on the road. They can receive a citation for excessive acceleration or
an “exhibition of speed” if they do not do the necessary actions
that the law requires in safe passing. The charge can result in fines
and jail time if a judge finds the person guilty of partaking in anything
that is even remotely close to street racing.
Never rev your engine or linger beside the other vehicle as if initiating
a race, even in jest. The California Highway Patrol (CHP) or other law
enforcement (LE) officers almost never see this type of action as a jest,
but rather as an exhibition of speed (sometimes referred to as a speedex)
or ‘street racing”. An
exhibition of speed is defined by California law as, “when he or she accelerates or drives at a rate of speed that is dangerous
and unsafe in order to show off or make an impression on someone else.” To charge a driver with a speedex, all an LE officer must prove
is the driver
willfully participated in an unsafe action that involved what they saw as an attempt
to impress someone. In addition, “street racing is defined as a
“speed contest” and does
not specify how long that contest had to last. And, the arresting LE officer
can impound the vehicles involved for up to 30 days.
Both street racing and an exhibition of speed conviction carry a criminal
misdemeanor record. A misdemeanor criminal record will follow you for
the rest of your life if you cannot get it expunged. Either conviction
can lead to jail time or probation, fines up to $1000 for first offenders,
and a drivers’ license suspension up to six months. When there are
injuries or property damage and for second offenders the penalties are
much worse. That jail time goes up to 16 to 36 months when there is a
serious injury and the fine could escalate to as much as $10,000. Additionally,
there could be civil consequences, as well.
A Justifiable Acceleration
People who receive excessive acceleration charges start with a good defense
already. They cannot pass another vehicle without accelerating past that
person's speed. Acceleration is necessary, so a driver should not
feel intimidated into entering a guilty plea just because he received
a ticket. The charging officer must prove that the alleged offender unlawfully
or once again,
willfully accelerated more than what was necessary to pass the vehicle. The state
bears the “burden of proof”. To do that, the officer may have
to produce records of the other person's speed, witnesses and so forth.
Therefore, the driver should have hire a professional traffic ticket defense
attorney to represent them.
Considering the fines and possible penalties for an excessive acceleration,
it is strongly advisable to hire a traffic defense attorney.
Charged with Excessive Acceleration in California?
You need representation if you've received an excessive acceleration
charge and you feel as though you did everything properly. You need a
traffic law attorney who will fight for your rights by pleading your case
from a legal standpoint. Call Bigger & Harman to schedule a consultation
with one of these California attorneys. Don't just accept a violation
that could cost you fines, points, and high insurance premiums. Call the
law office of Bigger & Harman today, 661-349-9300. En español,
llame al 661-349-9755. Or, send us an email: