Films like The Fast and The Furious make street racing cool and exciting, but it’s important to remember that these activities are still illegal and can land you in a lot of hot water. If you have been charged with street racing in North County, San Diego, a Vista criminal defense lawyer can help you fight to have the charges reduced or dropped.
One of the biggest problems with street racing charges is the fact that there is often not enough evidence to show the driver was actually participating in illegal races. Unless you admit to the police that you were involved in such races, the prosecution may not be able to prove that you actually were racing -which is why you should never speak to the police unless you have a criminal defense attorney in Vista present. In many cases, the case will be based solely upon the fact that you were driving a car with racing modifications while speeding beside vehicles featuring similar modifications. While this could look like an illegal race, it could also likely just be a coincidence that a few vehicles with similar modifications happened to be going over the speed limit while next to one another. It is important to remember that the burden of proof is on the prosecution to show this means you were racing, not on you to prove you were not racing.
Additionally, many of these cases involve questionable search and seizure practices by the arresting officers. If the police stopped you without just cause or searched you without reasonable suspicion, any evidence they uncover could be suppressed by your Vista defense attorney. Having this evidence suppressed could result in your case being dropped, the charges being reduced or provide leverage for your lawyer to negotiate a strong plea bargain.
If you are convicted of racing, you could be sentenced to up to 90 days in jail and $1,000 in fines. There is mandatory 24 hours jail and 40 hours community service as minimum punishment. The court may also suspend your license and order the impound of your car. If someone is hurt, there is a minimum sentence of 30 days and the case could be charged as felony reckless driving. If drugs or weapons are found in the car, that could also result in felony charges. Don’t risk these sorts of penalties. A skilled Vista defense lawyer may be able to plead speed racing down to a lesser charge of exhibition of speed.
If you have been accused of any form of illegal racing, call Vista criminal defense attorney Peter M. Liss at (760) 643-4050.
Creative Commons Image by Eivind Lindseth