What is Felony Speeding in Arizona?: A Comprehensive Guide by Chelle Law
In Arizona, “felony speeding” is a common misnomer, as criminal speeding itself is not classified as a felony. Instead, criminal speeding is categorized as a Class 3 Misdemeanor, which is the least severe type of misdemeanor in the state. Criminal speeding occurs when a driver exceeds the posted speed limit by more than 20 miles per hour, travels above 85 miles per hour on highways, or exceeds 35 miles per hour in a school zone. While criminal speeding alone does not constitute a felony, additional offenses such as driving under the influence (DUI) or involvement in a hit-and-run may lead to more severe charges. It is essential for drivers to abide by speed limits and practice safe driving habits to prevent potential legal consequences and promote road safety.
Speeding is a common traffic violation, but did you know that in Arizona, speeding can sometimes be considered a criminal offense? Felony speeding, also known as criminal speeding, is a serious charge that can result in significant fines, license suspension, and even jail time. In this comprehensive guide by Chelle Law, we will discuss what constitutes felony speeding in Arizona, the potential penalties, and when to seek legal assistance.
What is Felony Speeding in Arizona?
In Arizona, felony speeding, or criminal speeding, occurs when a driver exceeds the speed limit under specific conditions. According to Arizona Revised Statutes § 28-701.02, criminal speeding occurs when a driver:
- Exceeds 35 miles per hour (mph) in a school zone.
- Exceeds the posted speed limit by 20 mph in a residential or business district or 45 mph where no speed limit is posted.
- Drives at a speed greater than 85 mph in other locations.
It is crucial to understand that felony speeding is a criminal offense, which means the penalties can be more severe than those for a standard speeding ticket.
Penalties for Felony Speeding in Arizona
Felony speeding is typically classified as a Class 3 misdemeanor in Arizona. If convicted, the penalties may include:
- Fines: You can face fines of up to $500, plus additional surcharges and fees.
- Jail time: A Class 3 misdemeanor conviction can result in up to 30 days in jail, although first-time offenders may receive a lesser sentence or probation.
- License suspension: Your driver’s license may be suspended for up to 90 days, depending on the circumstances of your case.
- Traffic school: You may be required to complete a traffic education program.
- Points on your driving record: A criminal speeding conviction will add 3 points to your driving record, which can result in increased insurance premiums and possible license suspension if you accumulate too many points.
It is important to note that the specific penalties you face will depend on the circumstances of your case, your driving history, and whether you have previous criminal speeding convictions.
Defenses for Felony Speeding Charges
If you are facing a felony speeding charge, it is essential to explore your defense options. Some possible defenses for criminal speeding in Arizona include:
- Challenging the accuracy of the speed detection equipment: If the officer used radar, laser, or other speed detection devices, you could argue that the equipment was not properly calibrated or maintained, resulting in inaccurate speed measurements.
- Disputing the officer’s observation: You may be able to contest the officer’s estimation of your speed if they did not use any speed detection equipment.
- Demonstrating necessity: In some cases, you may be able to argue that your excessive speed was necessary to avoid greater harm, such as an accident or other dangerous situation.
When to Seek Legal Assistance
If you have been charged with felony speeding in Arizona, it is crucial to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. A skilled attorney, like those at Chelle Law, can help you navigate the legal process, evaluate the strength of the case against you, and develop a defense strategy tailored to your specific situation.
- Arizona Revised Statutes § 28-701.02 – Learn more about the statute governing felony speeding in Arizona, including the specific conditions under which a driver can be charged with this offense.
- Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) – Visit ADOT’s website for information on driver services, including license suspensions, points on your driving record, and other traffic-related issues.
Felony speeding in Arizona is a serious criminal offense that can lead to substantial fines, jail time, and other consequences. Understanding the laws surrounding criminal speeding and the potential penalties is crucial for anyone facing such charges. By understanding your rights and options, you can ensure the best possible outcome for your case. Chelle Law specializes in providing effective criminal defense representation for those accused of crimes in Scottsdale.