When Can I Be Charged with Reckless Driving in Nevada?

Nevada law defines reckless driving as driving “…a vehicle in willful or wanton disregard of the safety of persons or property.” (NRS 484B.653) While the definition is perhaps vague, some examples of when you may be charged with reckless driving include excessive speed above the speed limit, ignoring traffic signals, road rage behavior, colliding with other vehicles or objects, or car chases with police.

The law also includes either participating in, or organizing “…an unauthorized speed contest on a public highway,” under the reckless driving statute. Drag racing on public streets is considered reckless driving, and the penalties are higher for this offense.

If no physical injury or death resulted from the reckless driving, it is considered a misdemeanor. If physical injury or death was caused by the driving, it is considered a felony.

Reckless driving may also be offered as an alternative to a DUI charge. In some cases, your attorney may be able to negotiate a reduced penalty to a DUI charge, and a plea bargain may be offered to reduce the DUI charge to reckless driving. There are many advantages to this alternative, such as keeping the DUI off your driving record, although reckless driving is also considered a serious driving offense.

Penalties for Reckless Driving

In addition to any criminal penalties associated with a reckless driving conviction, the DMV will assess eight demerit points on your driving record. This is the largest single point value for a driving violation and may result in license suspension if the addition makes your record total more than 12 points.

The criminal penalties increase as the number of offenses increase. The penalties are:

  • First offense with no injury or death to others: Misdemeanor, with a fine of $250 to $1,000, and/or incarceration in county jail of up to six months. Drag racing imposes an additional penalty of 50 to 99 hours of community service, mandatory driver’s license suspension of six months to two years, and possible impounding of vehicle used in the offense for up to 15 days.
  • Second offense with no injury or death to others: Misdemeanor, with a fine of $1,000 to $1,500, and/or incarceration in county jail of up to six months. Drag racing imposes an additional penalty of 100 to 199 hours of community service, mandatory driver’s license suspension of six months to two years, and possible impounding of vehicle used in the offense for up to 30 days.
  • Third and subsequent offenses with no injury or death to others: Misdemeanor, with a fine of $1,500 to $2,000, and/or incarceration in county jail of up to six months. Drag racing imposes an additional penalty of 200 hours of community service, mandatory driver’s license suspension of six months to two years, and possible impounding of vehicle used in the offense for up to 30 days.
  • A reckless driving conviction where you failed to stop for the police, and substantial bodily harm or death was the result of the driving is considered a Category B felony with a term in state prison of one to six years, and a fine of $2,000 to $5,000.

Any of the above violations which occurred within a work zone can result in doubling the penalty.

The Defenders will provide you a vigorous defense of charges of Reckless Driving

If you have been charged with reckless driving, you need the services of a well-qualified attorney to navigate the complexities of the legal system. Your attorney may be able to have the charges reduced, or even dismissed if the charges are based on inaccurate or subjective judgments. If there were no witnesses to the questionable driving there may not be enough evidence to support the charges. The Defenders attorneys are well qualified to represent you in such cases. Call us today to discuss your case at (702) 333-3333.

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