In New York, a person can be convicted of “reckless driving” for driving a vehicle “in a manner which unreasonably interferes with the free and proper use of the public highway, or unreasonably endangers users of the public highway.”
(N.Y. Veh. & Traf. Law § 1212 (2017).)
The consequences of a reckless driving conviction depend on the circumstances. But generally, reckless driving is a misdemeanor in New York, and the possible penalties are:
A reckless driving conviction will also add five demerit points to a motorist’s driving record and likely lead to insurance rate increases.
In some states, it’s possible for a driver who’s charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI) to plea bargain for a lesser charge. When a DUI is plea bargained down to a reckless driving charge, it’s sometimes called a “wet reckless.”
In New York, most plea bargaining is prohibited in DWI cases. So it’s typically not possible to reduce a DWI to a reckless driving charge.
The consequences of a reckless driving conviction in New York can be serious. If you’ve been arrested for or charged with reckless driving, get in contact with an experienced criminal defense attorney. A qualified attorney can explain how the law applies to the facts of your case and help you decide on how best to handle your situation.