In North Carolina, a person can be convicted of "reckless driving" for driving on a public roadway:
Basically, North Carolina's reckless driving law requires motorists to drive in a reasonably safe manner at all times.
In deciding whether a person's driving qualifies as "reckless," a judge might look to factors like:
But the facts of each case are different. So, whether a particular course of driving meets the legal definition of "reckless" will always depend on the particular circumstances.
Reckless driving is a class 2 misdemeanor in North Carolina. The maximum fine for a class 2 misdemeanor is $1,000. Convicted drivers also face up to 30 days in jail for a first offense. And if the driver has prior criminal convictions, as much as 60 days in jail is possible.
A reckless driving conviction leads to license suspension only in certain circumstances. These include offenses where the person:
In North Carolina, it's possible for a driver who's charged with driving while impaired (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."
The consequences of a reckless driving conviction in North Carolina can be serious, especially if you have prior convictions. 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.