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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27757
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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best way to beat a reckless driving charge that was supposely

Customer Question

best way to beat a reckless driving charge that was supposely witnessed by a off duty sheriff deputy and he came to my house three days later to issue the ticket. he said he tried to call an on duty officer but none were available. he also ask me who was driving my blazer sunday. when I ask him question he said I better be careful or he would charge me with child endangerment.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 7 years ago.

If you want to go to trial on this case and you want to have a real chance to win it, you will need to have a lawyer.

Your officer seems to have identified the car rather than you, however, you spoke to him when he came to your house to issue the ticket and anything you said then will be used against you. Don't try to do this yourself, especially if when he stopped by you made admissions.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
all the Highway Trooper and other policemen we have talked to say they have never heard of anyone doing this before. One DA in orangeburg said it sounded like a lawsuit to her. also if the cop though it was child endangerment shouldn't he have done something the day this was to supposely happen and if it true then wasn't he delerlict in his duties. If he tried to call in a on duty deputy and stated none were available, i went by the shop and was talking with one for an hour and a half. Wouldn't he have given the describtion of my vehicle. This whole thing sounds fishy to me.
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 7 years ago.

I don't know whether the officer did anything wrong or not. All I know is what little you tell me, and there's clearly another side of the story, since you are going to have to appear in court on the ticket.

If it's as fishy as you seem to think it is the matter should be dismissed when you show up. But my experience has been that once you're either a suspect or a defendant on a criminal case, you can't trust what the police tell you, since you shouldn't be talking to them at all, and they are lawfully allowed to lie to you and tell you anything they think you might want to hear in order to get evidence to be used against you.

Get yourself a lawyer with criminal and civil trial experience. If you do have a civil case against the police, don't blow your chances by leaving your representation on the criminal case to someone who hasn't been trained for trial work (namely, you). Most people who handle their own defenses lose. And if you're found guilty of anything, your citation, by definition was not unlawful.

An arrest doesn't have to be made at the time an incident occurs, and for the officer not to have done so doesn't necessarily mean that the officer was derelict in his duties.. The state only has to get the charges filed before the statute of limitations runs out. However, South Carolina is a state in which there are no statutes of limitations for either felonies or misdemeanors. That means that an arrest and prosecution can be lawfully made at any time after an incident. So the gap in time, even if it helps your case factually, is not unlawful conduct.

Edited by FranL on 9/1/2010 at 3:01 AM EST