Thank you for your reply.
In Virginia, reckless driving is a Class 1 Misdemeanor
carrying a potential punishment of of one year in jail, $2,500.00 fine
, and (possibly) a suspension of your driver’s license.
The Supreme Court of the United States has held that the provision of counsel in all criminal cases "is a fundamental right, essential to a fair trial" and that this right applies to the states. Furthermore, the Sixth Amendment says that someone accused of a crime has the right to counsel to defend him or her in criminal prosecutions. This is normally applied to cases where the Defendant may be imprisoned if found guilty, and this is one of these cases.
As such, what someone in your situation may wish to do is at first hearing, request
counsel appointment of the Judge, stating that one cannot be afforded by you. Public defenders are generally reserved for people who cannot afford private attorneys.
The Judge is likely to first reset the matter and ask you to come back with 4-5 business cards of attorneys that you have spoken with who have quoted you a price that you could not afford. If you still cannot afford counsel, the Court will question your finances using either verbal questions or a written questionnaire. Going off this, the Judge will then appoint an attorney if one cannot afford one.
The Court may be reset several times while this matter is being handled. The key is to illustrate that one has no finances to afford counsel, or the ability to pay for one via employment.
I hope this helps and clarifies. Good luck.
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