Dear PoPville – I Know I Messed Up, Anyone Know a Good Lawyer?

Photo by PoPville flickr user Nikoo’s Photos

“Dear PoPville,

Let me first acknowledge that I made a huge mistake, am taking full responsibility for it and reflecting on my actions. I had a stressful day last week and on my way back from Dulles Airport to pick up a family member, I was stopped by VA cops going 34 mph above the speed limit on the airport access road and they handed me a “reckless driving” citation with a court date. I have had my license for ten years and never had a speeding ticket. I believe I need to take a lawyer and was wondering if anybody had a good recommendation as well as any suggestion to try to limit the damage. Thanks for your help.”

108 Comment

  • I once went 34mph, over the speed limit. The speed limit was 30 and I was on a bike. I’m really glad I didn’t get caught

    • brookland_rez

      Here’s my best Virginia story:
      Over Memorial Day weekend last year, me and a friend were riding our motorcycles in Highland County, VA on Rt 250 (west of Staunton, near the WV state line). The roads are great and have awesome turns. A lot of fun a motorcycle like mine.
      We were just west of McDowell, VA on a straight part of the road. We were cruising at around 60mph or so. According to my friend, a deer jumped out of a field to the left and jumped into the side of me. Fortunately I had full armored leathers on so I survived without a scratch. But I did smack my head pretty good and was out for about 30 minutes. I don’t remember the incident at all, but my bike had deer hair all caught in everything and the deer was drug down the road like cheese on a cheese grater.
      Virginia State Police showed up and was trying to give me a reckless driving ticket (and other tickets) while I was passed out and couldn’t defend myself. Fortunately, my friend is a lawyer and he argued on my behalf and got me out of the tickets. In the officer’s defense, he did say that he it was policy to give out a reckless ticket in the event of a motorcycle accident even if there was nobody at fault.
      Virginia is a messed up place with messed up laws and policies. After that incident last year, I refuse to set foot in that place. It’s kind of a pain because I have family in Alabama and I-81 is the most convenient way to get there. But I would rather go through MD, WV, KY, and TN to get to Alabama. It’s 100 miles out of the way, but I don’t care. Virginia is a place that is just not worth doing business with.

      • Did he ticket the dead deer too?

        • brookland_rez

          LOL. Surprised he didn’t
          According to my friend, the officer asked if we were speeding. My friend said “No, but I’m pretty sure that deer was”. My friend was super cool with how he handled it. I think part of the reason he let me off was because it was such a remote part of the state and there’s probably a little less oversight on their f’ed up policies than in heavier populated areas.

  • I just assumed it was Gob Bluth writing in.

  • Nope – take responsibility and pay up. That’s why they call them speeding tickets and 34 miles over the speed limit is “a lot” over the speed limit.

    • how’d you reach the keyboard from way up on that high horse?

      • theres nothing arrogant about the pay up comment.

        • Actually its a reckless driving charge, which is a misdemeanor charge and is much more serious than a mere speeding ticket. There is a fee and a the charge can go permanently on your record if convicted. You’ll likely have to appear in court regardless: this is not a pay through the mail ticket. Also its not something where the judge will drop the charge down to 80 in an 55 to a lower speed. You’re best suited to pay an attorney to try to get the misdemeanor charge dropped and pay the fee only as well as use his knowledge of local judges and process to get you the best outcome. You’ll still be on the hook for Fees similar to a normal speeding ticket regardless, but you need an attorney to fight to make sure there are no charges that go on your personal record. There are several flat fee attorneys that represent clients in court daily and are worth their fees in my opinion. They can advise you on the phone as to what they think they can help you accomplish and what common outcomes are in that district….

  • Everyone will have an opinion. If this is your first speeding ticket ever. You will not need a lawyer. You show up in court, the judge will ask you how do you plead…guilty, not guilty or no contest and then you will be able to say whatever you want in your defense or to accept responsibility.

    I JUST went to court for a reckless speeding ticket on the toll road (live in DC) and I have had a reckless driving ticket before (5 years ago). I did not get a lawyer bc I knew I was guilty and because I have a clean driving record I wasn’t concerned with the punishment. Both times I received a fine and that was it. You should be concerned about your insurance increasing and if you wanted to invest the money for a lawyer to try and get you out of the ticket, it may benefit you in the long run to not pay for increased insurance premiums.

    • I too had two reckless driving citations in fairfax county. They were 4 years apart, and I didn’t get a lawyer for either. I plead guilty both times, but my license was suspended the second time. I truly believe if I had a lawyer, it would have been a fine both times.

  • There are a bunch of lawyers in Loudon county who specialize in this – its a very common speed trap, and there is no way to just pay it, as it is a misdemeanor charge, so you HAVE to go to court. I am a lawyer, and so I could represent myself, but the local bar there is tough – the prosecutors will only do plea bargains with attorneys, if you go yourself you have to wait until all the lawyer-represented clients are done first. Its expensive, like $700 for the lawyer. Sorry, do not have any recommendations, but just know that you are not alone, they catch like 15 people a day at Dulles for that – its a really poorly signed thing and no rational reason for it being such a slow speed limit

    • I can concur with this as pretty much the same thing happened to me, except I was on my way TO Dulles on the Access Road and was only popped for going like 20 mph over. Whatever I was going, it was above the threshold for reckless driving in Virginia.

      I ended up paying about $800 for a lawyer, and did not have to attend my hearing. Lawyer got it down to a simple speeding ticket, no misdemeanor. Google search will give you multiple options because, as anon 2:45 p.m. says, this is a very common practice for cops on the Dulles Access Road. In fact, when I talked to my lawyer he guessed exactly which cop pulled me over, because she is infamous, apparently, for parking behind the very same bridge abutment that holds the sign where the speed limit goes down from 55 to 35. So you have zero time to reduce your speed. Lawyers know this, judge knows this, and just about every reckless-driving charge is reduced if you get a lawyer.

      • Wow. Now that is a trap if I ever hard of one. Keeps the lawyers and the state well-paid. THAT should be illegal.

        • Welcome to Virginia. There’s a very slick symbiotic and lucrative relationship between cops/judges/lawyer/prisons that keep everyone employed. It’s really, really bad – VA laws and penalties re incredibly harsh compared to the rest of the country and Virginia has some of the highest (and longest) incarceration rates.

          • Yep, it’s very “old south” and the MWAA Police who patrol the airport access road are notoriously merciless. It’s a big revenue generating operation for them.

          • But their gun laws are much less strict than MD and DC, so that’s one good thing about VA.

          • Yeah, we’re talking about guns now, so keep up.

          • Does that have anything to with the state capitol being more culturally oriented with the “Old South” than Northern Virginia? It seems like the state is more interested in spending money on jails than on desperately needed transit infrastructure.

          • brookland_rez

            Pretty much nailed it. This is yet another reason why Virginia sucks. This is also yet another reason why I don’t do any business with Virginia.

      • if you were going 65 mph, 10 mph over the limit, you would not be doing over 30 MPH over the limit of 35MPH. Maybe we need to get over the notion that driving 15MPH over the posted limit is a routine thing to do.

        BTW, was this a ramp? One should expect a slower limit on a ramp. THats not a speed trap, in that case.

      • Can somebody clarify where this trap is? Thankfully I haven’t ever been pulled over here, but go to Dulles about once a month and am usually running a bit late. So, I do speed there, and now I’m wondering how I have been so lucky for all these years.

  • When you go to the court date, a prosecutor will offer a plea deal for a reduced charges and a fine. The only reason you would get into real trouble is if you miss court. Also, if this is your first infraction, it shouldn’t change your insurance rates. There’s no need to retain an attorney.

    • This is an offense that can lead to possible jail time in VA. I know, cause I saw some one sentenced for the very same thing, on the very same road, when I was in traffic court. You should very much get a lawyer, and breathe easy, because it’s a messed up system they got.

  • I believe going over speed limit by 20 mph in VA is a felony…. def get a good lawyer. I had a friend that did >20mph on I-395 and went to trial over it. He hired a good lawyer and it was downgraded during the trial/appearance.

  • How much faster than the speed limit do you need to be going for it to be considered “reckless”?
    I think roads that are built like highways but have 40mph speed limits are total traps for this kind of thing. There really should be more criteria for what constitutes reckless driving than just a certain number above the speed limit. It’s really arbitrary and is obviously just a revenue generator- not a public safety interest.

  • Most of the Dulles access road is signed at 65 mph. The signage for reduced speed closer to the airport is pretty clear. How is this a “speed trap”?

    • Not sure it is what they’re referring to, but I got caught in a trap leaving dulles once. I was on the on ramp to the highway, but the speed limit hadn’t yet changed from the airport’s (25) to the toll road’s. They got me doing 46 and did me a “solid” by not giving me a reckless driving ticket. Or so they said.

  • agree you shouldn’t need a lawyer. I had a wreckless ticket a few years ago in Virginia going 30mph over, with a clean driving record. The judge offered me 2 options pay the fine (with added points to my record) or attend a driving improvement class for 1 Saturday and pay court cost (with no points added). Obviously every judge is different but I wouldn’t spend the money on a lawyer.

  • One thing to watch, and perhaps get a lawyer for, is that I believe this is a criminal offense. If you plead guilty – or request an alternative sentence in lieu of conviction – it may show up on background searches that are conducted by employers. Even if you are not prosecuted, the charge will remains until you expunge it, and that’s enough for many employers to not hire you. And even after the charge is expunged, it used to exist so therefore it will always exist….

    I believe I’ve lost out on two jobs since I was charged with possession of marijuana and a pipe in Maryland 3 years ago. I did community service to avoid prosecution and am in the process of getting the charge expunged but it will probably always be there like a scarlet letter.

  • 20+ over the limit or 80mph(whichever comes first) is a criminal misdemeanor in the Commonwealth of Virginia, which, if convicted of, will remain on your record for 11 years. So, you should get a lawyer for that reason alone. Also, there is an unofficial rule that some judges in VA go by where every mile over 90mph is a day in jail. So I am guessing you don’t want that either. So get a decent traffic lawyer and you should be OK. Abdo or Bose Law Firm are pretty good. Good luck!

  • I was in court last Wednesday for Reckless Driving- I was going 84 in a 70. The judge dropped the misdemeanor charge and I paid just the speeding fine and court fees. He didn’t charge a single person with reckless driving, of the 10 that showed up. No idea whether you should get a lawyer for going 34 over (you must have been flying!), but I’d probably do it just to be safe. It’s not worth having a misdemeanor on your record…

    • What is with this arbitrary number that 80 mph constitutes reckless driving? I’ve always heard the general rule is don’t go more than 10mph over the posted speed limit and I try to adhere to it. However, if the posted speed limit is 70 and you’re going 80 then that is reckless driving? Kind of insane if you ask me.

      • there is nowhere in the law that it says there is a right to go 10MPH over the posted limit. thats a custom, because the fine is low, and generally most cops do not find it worthwhile to enforce.

        Please don’t go over 80MPH on our roads.

        • brookland_rez

          No one said it’s ok to 10MPH over the speed limit. It’s just that it should not be an offense punishable by jail time.

        • Anastasia Beaverhausen

          If you don’t want people driving faster than 80 on your roads, then the state shouldn’t design and build them to safely handle speeds higher than 80. PERIOD

    • Maybe not. See the post from Chevy Chase at 3:01. If someone was going 65 in 55mph zone that switched to 35, they would then be going 30 mph above the speed limit — but hardly “flying” by DC standards. Clearly I don’t know the OPs situation, but if you’re used to driving at a posted speed of 65 mph, it doesn’t quite register that the posted speed is 55 mph, and it abruptly switches to 35 on a road that looks like a highway, I could see that happening without either “flying” or being what most would consider “reckless”.

      • Yep. I forget the exact numbers, but I was going like 60 in a 55 when it suddenly became 60 in a 35. The cop was sitting right behind the speed-limit sign in a spot that was not visible to drivers.

        In any case, whenever I go to Dulles now I set my cruise control at about 60, and know exactly when the speed limit drops to 35 so that I’m going 35 right at the sign (I’ve seen cops parked in the same spot on subsequent occasions).

        Basically, it’s near the off-ramp to the long-term parking lots. Still seems like the same stretch of highway as before, but the speed limit is much lower.

  • I agree with everyone saying to get a lawyer. I got a reckless driving ticket in Virginia (which for me was going 80 in a 65). Many people at court that day lost their licenses. Because I was on the low end, I just had a hefty fee and a LOT of points, which last for NINE years.

    The lesson I learned was that the people who had hired lawyers almost always got a plea deal and avoided the reckless driving charge. NO ONE else was invited to speak with the prosecutor for the plea deal. No one. I was at the very cusp of reckless driving, but was not given any flexibility. Oh, and I had no points on my license before that.

  • This is not just a speeding ticket in VA, it’s a criminal offense. You need to get a lawyer and do everything you can to have it reduced to improper driving. Folks don’t believe it, but pleading and paying a VA reckless driving is a misdemeanor offense that can result in your license being suspended or revoked in other jurisdictions, and will absolutely give you headaches if you have any professional fed job or a security clearance. There are a lot of lawyers that specialize in this. Between the lawyers and fines, do not be surprised if the damage tops $1000.

  • I just missed a reckless driving charge on Rt. 110 by 3 mph a few years ago so I was able to just pay a fine luckily. That said–VA is in the business of serving these citations; another reason VA is a terrible place. At least DC just fines you to death with silly cameras. There is no reason that any highway–even coming and going from DUI–should be that low.

  • I don’t practice any more (and didn’t practice in VA anyway but have heard enough stories), and I don’t mean to scare you, but you’re right in getting a lawyer. Reckless driving is one of those things that you shouldn’t handle on your own, despite what others have said here. I don’t have any names offhand, but don’t focus on the best overall lawyer — keep away from the big DC firms and look at lawyers who focus on VA traffic offenses. They’re the ones who are in that courthouse every day, know the people there, and are familiar with the byzantine rules of the VA court system. You’re much more likely to catch a break with one of those lawyers at your side than any “fancy big city lawyer.”
    Here’s a piece of good news: I was told years ago that unwritten VA policy is to make sure that anyone caught going over 90 gets at least a few hours in jail. You were clocked going exactly 89, correct? Unless that’s an amazing coincidence, the officer might have intentionally given you a break.

    • What an enormous waste of taxpayer money to arbitrarily decide anyone going over 90mph deserves to sit in jail. That is probably one of the more ridiculous things I’ve heard on this blog. So glad I don’t live in VA and will rethink ever giving any of my sales tax dollars to that neanderthal state in the future.

      • or, if you’re going 90 maybe you need a safe place to sit for a while because you’re being dangerous? Any collision at that speed is going to cause a lot of damage and be hard to avoid.

      • “Commonwealth.”

        **rolls eyes**

      • Fair enough — just the messenger here. I know of 2 cases in the past few years in which people cited for going 90 or over have been forced to cool their heels in a holding cell. One was for a couple of hours and the other one was for 7 or 8. In both cases they were then brought into court, given fines of over $1000 and sent on their way. In one of those cases, I was referred to a criminal lawyer in Richmond (for a friend) and he told me about this policy. When I told him how fast my friend was going, his response was “I don’t want to upset your friend, but she’s going to spend a little time in jail.” Turns out he was right.

      • Dude, you don’t even know the half of it. Virginia LOVES to toss people in the clink. It’s a huge money making scam. Once you’re in jail – even overnight – the fines pile up.
        My girlfriend had multiple incidents of bad luck with Virginia cops last year – speeding on I-95, getting busted for smoking a joint in her apartment (complete with SWAT-style raid), and then having cops show up at her doorstep due to a fire chief wanting to harass her about being parked at a red curb to drop off mail in a roadside U.S. postal service box.
        The state exists to FUCK with people and fund the government (since no one wants to pay their taxes). It’s a terrible place and she can’t wait to leave once her grad school finishes in July.

        • +1,000. These are among the real reasons to hate Virginia. It is a ruthless, evil place.

          • Case in point: for the marijuana charge, my girlfriend has 6 months probation and has to do 100 hours of community service. But then they suspended her license, in spite of being in her apartment when she got caught. Virginia law stipulates that anyone with any sort of drug charge automatically lose their license, regardless of circumstances.
            She’s only allowed to use the car to get to school/work. She’s not allowed to use it for community service, random drug testing appointments, grocery shopping, doctors appointments, emergencies, etc. If she needs to do anything, she needs to hitch a ride, pay for a cab, or walk (public transportation in VA? Ha!). ANY violation of this and she ends up in prison.
            The state is seriously messed up. And we wonder why families are mired in generational poverty?

          • Exactly. With policies like that it’s no wonder its residents are becoming increasingly poorer and worse off.

        • Bad luck? She was doing something against the law – many things it sounds like, and got caught.

        • Not to sound like a jerk but it sounds to me like your GF doesn’t have bad luck. Sounds like she’s really stupid as ALL of those offenses are easy enough to avoid by (a) not speeding, (b) not smoking pot and (c) obeying basic parking laws.

          • I totally disagree. You never do anything that’s slightly wrong? Aside from the usual speeding nonsense, these sound like massive overreactions, which is par for the course for VA police.
            Smoking pot in your home? So many people do this, it’s not even funny. And a SWAT style raid? Um, ok. Huge waste of taxpayer money and she literally had $5 worth of weed on her.
            As for the crazy fire chief, my girlfriend pulled over on the side of the road to drop a piece of mail in the mailbox. In and out of her in less than 20 seconds. The fire chief wrote down her license plate and showed up on her doorstep 4 days later with two police to issue a ticket. THAT IS INSANE. And totally creepily fascist.

          • It doesn’t sound to me like she has bad luck either. Sounds more like business as usual in VA.

          • brookland_rez

            I agree. No one is arguing that she did some things wrong. It’s that the crime doesn’t justify the punishment.

          • Well, my girlfriend is getting the last laugh on Virginia. They are paying for her masters degree in a hard science (full coverage for tuition, books, fees, and a $25K per year stipend salary) and then she’s fleeing the state with her middle finger in the air once she graduates. Too bad, because she’s extremely smart and would have contributed massively to their tax base over her lifetime.
            Get that paper and run.

          • Ha, I did the same thing! Got my Masters in-state and left immediately! The money didn’t even matter to me since my employer was reimbursing. 😉

          • Also, even though there are more jobs for me in Virginia, with my engineering degree, I refuse to even consider a job out there. That’s how much I hate Virginia.
            I feel like your girlfriend and I would be good friends. 😉

        • It’s true!

        • My girlfriend’s from Virginia, so I’ve heard a lot of ridiculous stories about people she knew getting locked up there. The craziest was a guy who supposedly violated a restraining order– he’d moved to Boston and had no contact with the ex-girlfriend, but his current girlfriend sent her an email. That got him 2 months in jail, and endless court visits leading up to it (which must have been hard on someone who lives and works in MA).

      • Not everyone convicted on reckless gets jail time AFAIK most do not. Theres a lot of misinformation on this thread.

  • I recommend Lysandra Pachuta @ Henson Pachuta:

  • If you need your car on a daily basis, I would consider an attorney to eliminate any risk. You pay $750 to an attorney and $250 fine. 20mph over the limit or in excess of 80mph is reckless in VA, it’s local economic development.
    For 34 mph over, there is no point to get your vehicle speed calibrated, unless you were at 81 mph.
    If you want to go at it yourself complete this driver improvement for VA

    Lawrence, Smith, and Gardner, PC in Fairfax… might consider a more local firm in Loudon.

    Not sure where this stands, but here is your risk…

  • My girlfriend was doing 90 mph on I-95 and got pulled over in VA last year. Her family hired a lawyer for her, I think it cost around $600. The lawyer knew which judges were working and made sure to get her case in front of a “friendly” judge. The deal with the lawyer is that they know who is a hard ass and who is more lenient. The lawyers can also get your court date(s) scheduled on days that are best for you, can get charges dropped/lowered due to technicalities, etc.
    She ended up getting the reckless driving charge dropped and had to pay fines and court fees. She was also able to do a driver’s ed course to avoid points on her license. However, this was also due to the fact that her car was mis-calibrated (i.e. the car’s speedometer showed her going 88mph but she was actually moving 90mph). The lawyer was also able to demand service records from the police regarding calibration of their speed gun.
    When you pay for the lawyer, you’re paying them to poke holes in the charges in order to be able to plead you down to a lesser charge or get it entirely dismissed. Well worth the money. Does anyone know how much insurance increases if you get a reckless driving charge on your record?

  • Is your license DC or VA? I ask because, unless the following has changed, it matters. DC and VA define “reckless driving” differently and issue a different number of points for each. I don’t know the specifics, but the long and short of it is if your license is VA and you get a reckless driving in VA, you will get a bunch of points and a hefty fine, which you admit that you deserve. If your license is in DC, a reckless driving conviction carries enough points that your license would be suspended. I know that DC council had discussed trying to restructure the penalty such that you wouldn’t lose your license for doing something in VA that you wouldn’t lose your license for doing the exact same thing in DC, but I do not know what if anything came of that, and I also do not know whether it would be of any value to you in your particular situation.

    • brookland_rez

      This is true. Once those points come back to your DC license, your license will be revoked for 6 months, and you will have to take all the tests again to get it back.

  • First of all, sorry you got this ticket. We’re all guilty of this at some point in our lives. Some of us are just luckier than others, I suppose. And like mine, your mother probably already told you this…”slow down, life is short.”

    Secondly, didn’t someone post on here a year or so ago about losing their DC license or having a bench warrant or something for a reckless driving in VA? Get a lawyer. It’ll be worth the $800 not to lose your license.

  • Recommend Richmond/Schy in Fairfax. This is a big part of their practice, and they’re nice, down-to-earth guys.

  • I picked up a reckless driving going around 80 in a 55 zone (I really thought it was 65… but still dumb of me) on 66 in Fairfax a couple years ago. I had never gotten a ticket before that, but once I realized that a suspended license or jail time or points on the driving record were possible, I decided to hire a lawyer to be safe. He talked to the prosecutor and the state trooper before we went to the judge, and couldn’t get them to drop the reckless to speeding, but with a guilty plea, they gave me the least possible punishment I think for reckless – a $100.00 fine, no points, no suspended license or anything. So I would say it is definitely worth it to get a lawyer who knows the county traffic courts.

    Also, if you can, try to figure out the driver improvement class they might make you take, and take it before the actual court date. You look good if the judge doesn’t have to send you to a class because you already took it.

    • “Also, if you can, try to figure out the driver improvement class they might make you take, and take it before the actual court date. You look good if the judge doesn’t have to send you to a class because you already took it.”
      Yes, this. My girlfriend’s attorney had her do this before her court date and the judge looked very favorably upon it.

  • You go to court, you bring a lawyer.

  • It’s an economic development program for local lawyers. Reckless driving is serious, hire the lawyer.

  • If you indeed have a clean record they might drop 1 mph for each year of driving without a ticket in Virginia. At least that is what happened in my case.

  • better call saul!

  • Just thought I’d put in my two cents here – I’ve fought a reckless driving ticket before. (The cop was sitting where the speed limit drops from 55 to 45.) I got a lawyer and preemptively took a safe driving class before my court date. The court dropped the charge down to improper driving and I paid $100 fine. That was it. Might be worth a shot.

    • Forgot to mention: This was in a Fairfax court a couple of years ago and I got caught in Fairfax county.

      • +1. Also, if you’re in search of a lawyer, take a day off work and go sit in traffic court. Make notes of the attorneys who do the most cases and speak the most with the prosecutor and research them on the internet after.

  • Take it from someone that has had a ton of tickets (including reckless) in Virginia. Go take an online traffic school course NOW before the hearing. Try speaking with an attorney beforehand. You don’t need Matlock to fix this one for you.

    Your standard attorney that is experienced with traffic court will probably be able to work a deal out without you having to make an appearance.

    • brookland_rez

      This is why I don’t go to VA anymore. I understand if you live there (shudder) or have to work there, but since I don’t do either, I stay away.

  • A bit of a non sequiter, but after some jerk in a handyman van with VA plates intentionally hit my car last year in Georgetown, I discovered that he didn’t have car insurance and that is PERFECTLY LEGAL in Virginia. So I was on the hook for covering the damage through my insurance. So basically, Virginia is very interested in fining you for speed traps, but not at all concerned about protecting you from actual reckless drivers.

  • For what it’s worth, check out the law firm of Elders, Zinacola & Blanch.

  • At the very least, I hope people reading this thread get a better understanding of what’s happening day in/day out in the Virginia legal system. And for the love of god, don’t speed. At this point, I avoid Virginia at all costs as I’ve had too many friends whose lives have been ruined there. It’s a very vindictive place with a massively corrupt culture once you get outside the Beltway.

    • + a million

    • Here here!

    • I’d love to see a big media personality like Ira Glass do a story on this.

    • I haven’t thought about this in a while, but this reminds me that when I moved to the area a decade ago a friend got a couple speeding tickets in VA. Nothing reckless, all happened on the highway and he was doing no more than 15 over the limit both times, but they threw the book at him anyway since it was multiple tickets in a short amount of time. He was a former military, pretty straight laced guy, but the ordeal really affected his life for a little while. He vowed never to spend a dime in VA after that. Not in touch with him anymore so no idea if he kept the vow.

      • I made a similar vow. Unfortunately with in-laws in Virginia it’s not always possible to stick to it. 🙁 But I try my best.

    • brookland_rez

      As someone who lived there for 2 years, I agree completely.

  • Your instincts are correct. Consult with a lawyer, friend. I know people who have been busted on I-95, and used the below attorney with good results. He’s a little far away, but should be able to recommend someone up in this area if he can’t handle the matter.

    Claude Whitehead, III
    [email protected]
    420 Libbie Avenue
    Richmond, VA 23226

  • You should definitely talk to a lawyer. You should contact Louis Kleiman ( or First Point Law Group:

  • I too have received a reckless on the toll road, not 34 over though. But: 1. You will get a flood of mail from lawyers very soon and 2. Call B.R. Hicks! He’s been at it for decades and is a nice guy. He also had me get my speedometer calibrated as part of the process. I’m not sure how those guys operate, but my speedometer 2001 car was apparently “off” by a few mph…

  • Hello! Last year I was caught going 25 miles over the speed limit in Fairfax County, Virginia. I know the pain of a “Reckless Driving” ticket.

    I was nervous about it and decided to rtain a lawyer. I highly recommend Andi Geloo! She is the best.! Throughout the whole process, Andi was comforting and reassuring. My ticket ended up being dismissed.

    I do want to note that my driving record was clean. No tickets or accidents in the past 5 or 6 years.

    Law Office of Andi Geloo
    10521 Judicial Dr
    Ste 201
    Fairfax, VA 22030
    Get Directions
    Phone number (703) 359-1022
    Business website

    Best wishes.


  • Preemptively take a 1-day defensive driving course. Be extremely apologetic to the judge and plead not guilty. This worked for me several years back in VA. Key is to go in having already taken the class. This shows you are sincere when you say you are changing your behavior.

  • I got busted doing 60 right after the speed limit drops going into the airport to 35 and it was right before thanksgiving. The officer told me that he could give me a ticket for reckless driving (in VA you only have to be going 20 over the limit, MD is 30 over). I was very nice to the officer and always replied yes sir, no sir, etc. He must have been in a good mood because he let me off with a verbal warning, and said that I would be the one person he let go that day. I was very thankful for his leniency and since that day, I have always made sure I slow down and drive the speed limit around the airport, even when I have cars tailgating me or racing past me on the left because I am sure I will not be that lucky if I am stopped a second time.

  • Yup, you should definitely get a lawyer – if only to advise you to: 1) never say “I messed up,” and 2) never post what you did on a blog.

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