Contrary to popular belief and our common word usage, it is not technically a crime to speed in Maryland. We have all been in the car and either said or heard the words “breaking the law” when describing the act of driving over the speed limit. While speeding, and other traffic infractions such as running a red light, failing to signal, and following too closely may be against the law, these violations are not crimes. Crimes in are generally defined as violations that are punishable by some term of imprisonment, but there are some exceptions. While you may face a hefty fine, points, and a license suspension, you cannot be sentenced to prison for a speeding ticket, and you will not be shipped off to jail for rolling through a stop sign. These tickets are all classified as civil infractions, but still should not be taken lightly. Sometimes the punishments for these infractions can actually be more inconvenient than spending a night in the county lockup. The Herbst Firm’s criminal lawyers understand that license suspensions can be extremely debilitating, and points can not only result in hefty fines, but also in outrageous car insurance rate hikes. Therefore, our lawyers handle all types civil traffic infractions.
While criminal infractions might not be as common as civil infractions in, there are still thousands of criminal citations and arrests each year. Many criminal traffic violations can result in a jail sentence, but also can result in fines, points, and driver license suspensions. While the most common criminal traffic infraction is drunk driving, there are still a large number of arrests and criminal citations for other crimes. Common criminal traffic infractions other than drunk driving include reckless driving, aggressive driving, and fleeing or eluding police. It is no surprise that tickets are common, due to the simple fact that police spend so much of their time on the road where these crimes occur. Many people really only come into contact with police when it is out on the streets and highways. Traffic violations are also a type of crime that affect a wide range of people from teenagers to retirees, and from first time offenders to career criminals. Due to the possible harsh consequences of these violations, it is recommended that you consult a lawyer for advice. If you or someone you know has been arrested or cited for a violation, contact The Herbst Firm for a consultation.