Street Racing Crimes in Florida
Hollywood glamorizes street racing through popular culture in movies like The Fast and the Furious franchise. As a result, more street racers are speeding around town, presenting a traffic risk to other vehicles and their passengers.
The Florida legislature has strict laws against street racing that result in severe penalties for anyone found guilty of the crime. Being charged and convicted of a street racing crime can change your life for a long time to come.
If charged with a street racing offense, you may need a Miami criminal lawyer to help you understand the nature and severity of the charges brought against you. Here are the typical charges for street racing crimes.
Reckless Driving with Serious Bodily Injury
Driving in a “reckless manner” is defined as willful or wanton disregard for others’ safety. According to Fla. Stat. §316.192(3)(c)3, reckless driving becomes a felony if in addition to above, the driver creates a substantial risk of death or injury to other motorists or road users. The charge is a third-degree felony, and those convicted can receive a sentence of up to 5 years in a Florida State Prison. If charged by the police with this crime, notify our criminal lawyer in Miami to help you through the arrest and booking procedure.
According to Fla. Stat. §782.071, anyone who is operating a motor vehicle with reckless intent and who is responsible for the death or injury of another person is guilty of vehicular homicide. This charge is a second-degree felony carrying a sentence of up to 15 years in a Florida State Prison.
Never leave the scene of an automobile accident. If the police prove you were street racing and it resulted in a death, after which you fled the scene, the police will charge you with a first-degree felony. The sentence for this charge is up to 30 years in a state prison facility. The court will revoke your license if you are found guilty of this offense.
Florida Stat. §316.191 states that highway racing is a first-degree misdemeanor. Violations of this statute include:
- The planned coordination of a street race
- Driving that suggests a competition or unnecessary exhibition of speed
- Stopping to initiate a race
- Knowingly riding as a passenger in a street race
Penalties include fines between $500 and $1,000, as well as a one-year driver’s license revocation for first-time offenders. Second-time offenders can expect a first-degree misdemeanor charge with a 2-year license revocation and an increased fine of up to $5,000. A third offense within 5 years results in a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in jail and a 4-year driver’s license revocation.
Spectators at Racing Events
Street racers are not the only ones on the wrong side of the law—spectators can also be charged with a civil violation. The law takes the position that street races are encouraged by large crowds of supporters that become unruly and present a public safety threat to other road users.
Police can arrest unruly spectators and fine them up to $500 as a moving violation. Points are often added to offenders’ drivers’ licenses as well.
What to Do If You’ve Been Arrested and Charged by the Police
Immediately contact our Miami criminal defense lawyer after your arrest by law enforcement. If any evidence needs to be examined by private investigators, every second counts at a crime scene.
Arresting officers and accident technicians typically find evidence on a site and accept or dismiss it to support their views. A private detective will follow up on the site with an independent investigation into the crash site or accident scene. In some cases, a private detective may discover evidence that law enforcement officials may have missed in their initial investigation.
By notifying your attorney of your arrest, they can calm your nerves and tell you what to expect and what to say to the police. Your attorney can meet you at the police station and negotiate the terms for your bail and release from custody.
It is vital to use a qualified and experienced attorney who is familiar with handling street racing crimes in Miami. Your attorney will need local knowledge to build and present your case to the court. Witness testimony preparation and legal paperwork are all handled by your attorney and their legal team.
You cannot afford to be left without representation if charged with a street racing crime, so seek legal representation as soon as you can.
We handle a variety of criminal law cases, so call us now if you have any questions.
View more contact information here: Miami Criminal Lawyer.