The adrenaline-packed scenes from the "Fast & Furious" franchise might make the exhibition of speed or reckless driving look exhilarating, but the reality of such charges in CA is far from glamorous.
For many drivers, showcasing their vehicles' prowess on the open road can be tempting, especially if influenced by high-octane cinema. Yet, the potential legal consequences are severe. Here, we delve into the repercussions and preventative measures to guard against an exhibition of speed or reckless driving charge.
An Exhibition of Speed or Reckless Driving Penalties Strengthened Under AB-3
Our team often encounters individuals shocked by the stringent penalties related to the exhibition of speed or reckless driving.
However, these measures are about to get much worse. Set for enactment in 2025, AB-3, Fong. Exhibition of speed on a highway, aims to toughen these penalties further. This amendment to the CA Vehicle Code emphasizes that both offenses are considered misdemeanor crimes in CA. More shockingly, the drivers and even those aiding and abetting in organizing or conducting a "sideshow" can face more stringent consequences.
A conviction isn't just a slap on the wrist. It can lead to incarceration in the Kern County jail or probation for up to six months, a “base fine” of up to $1,000, or both. But that's not where it ends. The CA Assembly & Senate have introduced, and the Governor has approved ten surcharges to this base fine, which can escalate it to nearly five times the original amount. And if that wasn’t painful enough, there's the potential towing and impound fee to consider. If law enforcement impounds your vehicle, you might have to shell out an additional $1,500 or more to get it back.
Preventing an Exhibition of Speed or Reckless Driving Charge
Prevention is always cheaper than the cure.
While the thrill might seem worth it in the heat of the moment, the aftermath is undoubtedly not. We always advise our clients to exercise restraint on the roads, respecting both the law and the safety of others. Participating in such acts doesn't just jeopardize one's legal standing but can also endanger lives.
Some juveniles and young adults have been lured into participation with the promise of “ringside” tickets for them and their friends to help set up roadblocks and collect admission. They may not even realize their participation is a crime, but the traffic code is very specific about “aiding and abetting.”
“(b) A person shall not aid or abet in any motor vehicle speed contest on a highway or in an off-street parking facility. (c) A person shall not engage in a motor vehicle exhibition of speed on a highway or in an off-street parking facility, and a person shall not aid or abet in a motor vehicle exhibition of speed on any highway or in an off-street parking facility. (d) A person shall not, for the purpose of facilitating or aiding or as an incident to any motor vehicle speed contest or exhibition upon a highway or in an off-street parking facility, in any manner obstruct or place a barricade or obstruction or assist or participate in placing a barricade or obstruction upon a highway or in an off-street parking facility.”—CA Vehicle Code (CVC) Section 23109, Driving Offenses.
The tragic outcomes we've witnessed have often stemmed from a momentary lapse in judgment. Although these sideshows have occurred across CA, Bakersfield and Kern County have witnessed the fatal outcome of exhibitions of speed firsthand.
When Prevention Fails: Your Immediate Course of Action
Mistakes happen. If you find yourself on the wrong side of the law concerning an exhibition of speed or reckless driving charge, it's crucial to remember your rights.
Immediately, exercise your "right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.”
What is your next step? Reach out to us, Bigger & Harman, APC. As your local Bakersfield, CA, traffic defense team, we bring our extensive traffic court and criminal trial experience to the table on your behalf. We understand the intricacies of such charges and can guide you effectively.
In conclusion, while the allure of speed and power might be hard to resist, especially when influenced by popular culture, it's vital to recognize the real-world implications of an exhibition of speed or reckless driving in CA. Always prioritize safety and legality; know we're here to assist if things go awry.
Contact Bigger & Harman When You Are Charged with an Exhibition of Speed or Reckless Driving in Bakersfield, CA
If accused of participating in an exhibition of speed or reckless driving, give us a call at (661) 349-9300. Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.
AB-3, Fong. Exhibition of speed on a highway.