As discussed in Part One, the traffic in Los Angeles can be a nightmare, and can result in a plethora of criminal offenses. The frustration and anger that stems from driving, and from “road rage” can cause a significant impact on your life in the form of criminal consequences. Although there is no specific statute that makes road rage unlawful, there are a plethora of offenses that can stem from your actions on the road.

Hit and Run

Many times a Los Angeles Hit and Run can be an added charge on top of an assault or battery, if the driver causes injury or damage and then fails to provide proper contact information. Under California Vehicle Code 20001 and 20002, a person who causes damage to someone’s property or injury to a person, and does not stop to provide assistance or contact information, may be found guilty of a Hit and Run. This could be an additional charge on top of assault, or battery. The potential sentence  will vary depending on whether there is injury to person, or damage to property and the extent of that damage or injury.

The traffic in Los Angeles can be a nightmare, and can often lead to anger and frustration as everyone rushes to get from one place to another. Oftentimes people will succumb to their frustration and let “road rage” take the better of them. What many people don’t know is that this behavior could result in a criminal conviction. Therefore, it is always a good idea to stay calm and in control of any situation while you are on the road.

Although there is no specific law against road rage, there are several offenses that could be driven by road rage.

Assault with a Deadly Weapon

Many factors will influence prosecutors in how the charge a criminal offense. Most often it is the variable of injuries that will persuade their final decision. However, many times misdemeanors are overcharged as felonies, and a person ends up facing charges and proving innocence on a much higher charge than it should have been. This is why the services of a Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer are crucial from the very beginning of your case.

When a person has been charged with an offense, the case will be submitted for review by the Prosecutors. The prosecutors will review the facts and make a determination of whether or not the case will move forward, and whether or not it will be charged as a misdemeanor or felony.

Misdemeanors:

If you have been arrested for a Hit and Run, you have not yet been convicted. A conviction can only be made after the Court has made a finding of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, or you have entered a plea of guilty or no contest.

Once a conviction has been made, it will go on your permanent record. You will then have to report it on applications for employment, for school and other institutions that require it. In addition, there will be a sentence that you will have to comply by. It can involve a fine, jail time, and probation. Once a sentence has been issued, you must complete the terms or you may be issued a bench warrant for failure to comply.

Fortunately, there are potential ways to avoid a conviction. The first step is to consult with a Los Angeles Hit and Run lawyer. A legal professional will have the knowledge and expertise to assess your case for potential defenses and weaknesses as well as provide a strong compelling argument in your favor.

If you have been charged with a Hit and Run in Los Angeles, you will be given a citation and a notice to appear in Court. This citation will state the time and which court house. This is not an optional appearance. You must appear on or before that date stated. This is called your arraignment.

At the arraignment, you will be asked to enter a plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. This will be entered after you have spoken to a Prosecutor about the potential sentence they are willing to give if you plead guilty that day.

How do you know this is a good offer? How do you know if the Court has followed proper procedural requirements and they are not violating your Constitutional rights? You know by hiring a Los Angeles Hit and Run Lawyer.

If you have been arrested and charged with a criminal offense, you have the right to an attorney. This right is a very important one and is guaranteed to each and every person charged with an offense in the United States. The criminal justice system is complicated, it is complex and afford many great protections to persons being charged. However, unless you are an experienced and knowledgeable Los Angeles Criminal Defense attorney, you may be confused and even frustrated with the whole situation.

A legal professional has the reputation and the education to be able to make the entire process much easier and stress free for someone who is awaiting a Judgment. There are many ways in which an attorney can help.

  1. Readily available defenses

If you have been arrested and the crime is a felony, chances are the State of California will keep you in custody pending the conclusion of your case. However, you are entitled to a bail hearing to determine the amount of bail, if any, will be set.

If you are in custody it is a very stressful and difficult time. Regardless, retaining an experienced and knowledgeable Los Angeles Criminal Defense attorney should be a priority and the first thing you do. During a bail hearing, there are several elements to be proven. Without the proper legal background and expertise, you would not be able to adequately and quickly prepare for the hearing.

When granting or denying bail, the Court will consider two elements; 1) is there a flight risk and 2) is there a harm to society.

To determine the possible consequences of a hit and run offense, you must first determine which Vehicle Code Section the conviction was made under.

It is important to remember that a person has not been convicted until the person has been found guilty or has entered a plea of guilty. If a person has simply been arrested, they are simply being charged and are not convicted. To be convicted of an offense, there must be a trial or a voluntary plea. There can be no sentence issued, unless the person has been convicted.

If a Hit and Run involves injury to a person, the person that has been convicted will be charged under California Vehicle code §20001(b)(1). The statute states that a person who has been found guilty under this section will “be punished by imprisonment in the state prison, or in a county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine of not less than one thousand dollars ($1,000) nor more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine”

When you have been arrested and charged with the possession of marijuana, the amount of marijuana you have in your possession will help determine how you will be charged.

If you have less than one ounce in your possession, you will be charged under California Health and Safety Code 11357(b). This code section states in relevant part:

“Except as authorized by law, every person who possesses not more than 28.5 grams of marijuana, other than concentrated cannabis, is guilty of an infraction punishable by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars ($100)” An infraction is generally just a fine. There is no probation, or community service, or rehabilitation classes. An infraction is similar to a traffic ticket. It does not go on your permanent criminal record and rarely has to be disclosed on employment or education applications.