Recently a 15 year old boy and his 11 year old brother went for a drive in the family sedan. Normally not news worthy, however, this boy did not have a valid Florida’s Driver’s License and he crashed the vehicle off a bridge. Luckily, the boys did not sustain any injuries. The oldest Brother is facing Riverside Criminal Charges of operating a vehicle without a license and Reckless Driving, both very serious Charges.
In Riverside, Reckless Driving is an offense all on it own. This is because of the punishment allowed under the statute and how the statute is formed. Reckless Driving is defined under Florida Statute § 316.192, which reads [in relevant part]:
Any person who drives any vehicle in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property is guilty of reckless driving…Except as provided in subsection , any person convicted of reckless driving shall be punished: upon first conviction, by imprisonment for a period of not more than 90 days OR by fine of not less than $25 nor more than $500 OR by both such fine and imprisonment.
However, more relevant to the current case at hand is subsection 3, which states, “any person: who is in violation of subsection ; who operates a vehicle; and who, by reason of such operation, causes: damage to the property or person of another commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.” A First Degree Misdemeanor can carry a punishment of a jail sentence not exceeding one year and/or a fine not to exceed $1000.
In this case, the young boy ran the vehicle off of a bridge, therefore, causing damage to the guard railing and possibly other structural aspects. However, as a Riverside Traffic Attorney, I would argue that the boy was not “willful and wanton” in his actions to disregard the safety of others. Furthermore, the State is still required to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. If they cannot meet that burden then the charges cannot stand. The earlier you get a Riverside Traffic Attorney involved in your case the more time I have to mitigate the circumstance and fight for your rights. So, if you are facing Criminal Charges, contact a Riverside Traffic Attorney today. It could prove to be invaluable in your case.