The NYPD has been recently issuing numerous Reckless Driving Pink Summonses answerable in the Summons Part of New York City Criminal Courts, rather than issuing the appropriate summons for the specific Vehicle and Traffic infraction involved in the NYS Traffic Violations Bureau. So if someone was backing up their car down a one way street looking for a parking spot a few years ago, he or she might have received a traffic violation summons for driving the wrong way on a city street. Instead, today, for that same conduct, one might be issued a pink summons for a MISDEMEANOR RECKLESS DRIVING CHARGE, which is a criminal offense that can leave you with not only five points on your driving record, able to be considered a “serious driving offense” under the new DMV Regulations leading to increased and a possible lifetime license revocation, cause an increase in insurance rates, high fines, surcharges, and driver assessment fees, and if that is not enough, worst of all, if convicted, will leave you with a permanent and life long criminal record.
The charge of Reckless Driving in New York can be found in the NYS Vehicle and Traffic Law (VTL) in Section 1212:
§ 1212. Reckless driving
Reckless driving shall mean driving or using any motor vehicle, motorcycle or any other vehicle propelled by any power other than muscular power or any appliance or accessory thereof in a manner which unreasonably interferes with the free and proper use of the public highway, or unreasonably endangers users of the public highway. Reckless driving is prohibited. Every person violating this provision shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.
Reckless Driving should not be confused with the charge of RECKLESS ENDANGERMENT which is found in the NYS PENAL LAW.
It seems to me that many of the summons issued for Recklesss Driving are facially insufficient to support the charge. For example, I handled a case for a client who drove around a doubled parked car to continue on the road on which he was traveling. In so doing, the client drove in the on coming lane of traffic while there were no cars traveling in the direction of the on coming traffic. For that conduct the client was issued a criminal court pink summons of Reckless Driving. Fortunately, I was able to convince the Court that the factual allegations on the summons were insufficient to establish the misdemeanor offense of Reckless Driving under the NYS VTL, and the summons was dismissed.
If you have been issued a summons for Reckless Driving, you should contact a QUEENS RECKLESS DRIVING LAWYER to help you avoid bad consequences which an experienced and knowledgeable CRIMINAL LAWYER IN QUEENS NY can help you avoid. Please contact me at 718-414-6186, or by email for a free consultation.