Negligent Driving in Bremerton
Negligent driving is defined as operating a motor vehicle in an inattentive manner that endangers or is likely to endanger other people or property. The word negligent means a failure to implement ordinary care. According to Washington State law, there are two degrees of negligent driving. Although these degrees are less severe than being charged with a DUI, they should nonetheless be treated seriously.
First Degree Negligent Driving is a criminal charge. It is when the driver of the vehicle displayed signs of having consumed alcohol or mind-altering substances. It is important to know that it is possible to find yourself charged with this crime even without hard proof of being legally intoxicated or impaired. This means it could be completely up to the arresting officer’s discretion. Just the odor of alcohol in your car or having any paraphernalia such as an open container or pipe is enough for the officer to charge you with this crime.
Negligent driving in the first degree is a misdemeanor offense. It is punishable by up to 90 days in jail and a $1000 fine. In order to be convicted of this charge three things must be proven. It must be proven that you were driving negligently without using normal care, that you endangered or threatened to endanger a person or property and that you appeared to have been under the influence of intoxicants.
Second Degree Negligent Driving is a traffic infraction. It is reserved for individuals driving negligently without showing any signs of intoxication or consumption. Even though second degree negligent driving is only a traffic infraction, it is subject to a fine of $550. In addition to the fine, ignoring this charge could cause your insurance rates to go through the roof. If there are other traffic infractions already on your record you are at risk of having your driver’s license suspended.
We offer a complimentary consultation here at the law offices of Jason S. Newcombe. Give one of our Bremerton negligent lawyers a call to get more information about this possibly life-altering charge and find out how we can help.How is a Charge of Negligent Driving Established?
You could find yourself accused of negligent driving because of accidentally crossing over the yellow line, forgetting to use a turn signal, speeding, falling asleep at the wheel or simply not paying attention to the conditions of the road. Negligent driving differs from the more serious charge of reckless driving because reckless driving is when a driver shows malicious disregard for other people or property, while negligent driving is merely perceived carelessness.
Unfortunately, defining an action as “negligent” comes with some gray area. The ticketing officers judgment is the sole arbiter, and they are only human. Perhaps you ended up on the wrong end of his or her bad day, and poor judgment was used when deciding to cite you for this offense. Perhaps you were pulled over without probable cause and never should have received the ticket in the first place.
With more than 50 years of combined experience, our Bremerton negligent driving lawyers know how to best investigate these types of cases. We investigate your case in order to ascertain the facts. Having your charges dismissed, or at least reduced, is our primary goal. In order to do this we examine the specifics surrounding your offense, evaluate the police reports and listen to your side of the story.Start Developing your Defense by Contacting one of Our Qualified Bremerton Negligent Driving Attorneys for Your Free Consultation
Speak with one of our experienced Washington lawyers today at no cost to you. The free consultation with our team can help you determine if your negligent driving charge can be challenged or reduced, allowing you to keep a clean driving record. Negligent driving cases are heard in either the Kitsap County District Court, which is located in Port Orchard, or the Bremerton Municipal Court. Make sure your rights are protected with help from a professional attorney that cares about the end result of your case.