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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Civil Rights for Virginia on
Q: How long does the state have to get you to court on Preliminary hearing on felony charges
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answered on May 14, 2024

There is no statutory limitation governing the time it takes for the Commonwealth of Virginia to go forward with a preliminary hearing; however, the Code does regulate the timeline for trials once a felony case makes its way to the Circuit Court for trial.

That being said, a judge of a...
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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: If magistrates denied bond can you ask for bond at next arraignment date in Virginia
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answered on May 1, 2024

Judges can (and frequently do) review a defendant's bond status at the arraignment whenever a magistrate holds a person without bond. Even if the judge does not grant bond at the arraignment, a defendant or their attorney can file a motion for a bond hearing. Bond hearings are held within a... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: Should i plead guilty at arraignment or hope for the best and plead not guilty?

I am being charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle as well as false information to a police officer. I have no criminal record and I am a student. I cannot afford a lawyer. I have arraignment coming up and I don’t know if I should plead guilty and hope that the judge knows i’m a first... View More

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answered on Apr 28, 2024

At your arraignment you will have the opportunity to answer a list of financial questions to see whether you qualify for a public defender/court-appointed attorney. Unauthorized use of a motor vehicle is almost always a felony charge and so you will likely be scheduling a preliminary hearing in... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: if i own my own home and a raid happen i should have paper work from the law if someone beside my self lives there

i let someone live there and they raid it i should get some type paper work

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answered on Apr 11, 2024

By law, a copy of the search warrant and affidavit must be served by law enforcement either on the property owner or (if the owner is not present) on an adult occupant. If no one is present, then the documents are to be left in a conspicuous location at the property. Additionally, law enforcement... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Virginia on
Q: Can I take an online driver course at 19 to offset demerit points for 60mph in a 45 if my prior driving history is clean
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answered on Apr 3, 2024

Attending a DMV-approved driver improvement clinic voluntarily may result in you being awarded 5 safe driving points. This can be done once every two years. When you enroll you should be able to provide your reason for attending the clinic; if it's entered into the system as being done... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: I was wondering if a cop is allowed to search a locked container, glove box, and trunk if I was pulled over. I’m in VA.

I was just curious as to if a cop can search glove box, a bag that’s locked, or a container that is also locked without a warrant if I was to be pulled over in a traffic stop. And/or if for some reason they have probable cause to search the vehicle at all would they then be able to search the... View More

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answered on Apr 2, 2024

The law has allowed warrantless searches of automobiles since the 1920s, as long as probable cause exists to justify the search. The locked status of the containers or compartments of the vehicle shouldn't matter if there's probable cause to justify the search. The inability to readily... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Virginia on
Q: Will I get in trouble for accidentally passing a school bus?

Hello,

This morning I was driving to work and a school bus pulled out in front of me and I quickly switched to the next lane over. The reason I’m concerned is because as soon as the bus pulled out they were slowly moving and I didn’t realize they were about to stop again. I’m not... View More

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answered on Mar 22, 2024

There are two Virginia statutes governing the passing of a school bus. They both discuss a vehicle "approaching" a stopped school bus and require that the school bus actually be stopped when it is passed. The statutes do not appear to apply to the situation you have described; this, as... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Virginia on
Q: The bus was pulled off the side of the road to right of lane edge solid white line and not on "any highway," Violation?
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answered on Mar 20, 2024

The Code of Virginia (specifically, Title 46.2, which governs most traffic matters) defines "highway", "roadway", and "shoulder" separately. That being said, there are times when traffic rules will apply to vehicles on the shoulder. For instance, Section 46.2-888,... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Virginia on
Q: What do I do if I was found guilty for speeding but in the court database states stated I was guilty absentina?

In Virginia I did go to court for citation just infraction speeding 54 on a 35. I have a super clean record as well, nothing on it was hoping I get a break. Cop did not ask typical questions like where are you going why are you almost going criminal speed. He was super quick on giving me a ticket.... View More

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answered on Mar 18, 2024

If you were present then you should not be found guilty in absentia or be asked to pay the associated in absentia fee ($35 last I checked). Check with the clerk's office for the court in which your case was called to see if there's anything you can do. It's possible that the clerk... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Virginia on
Q: should I fight a failure to yeild ticket when other driver was a minor with permit and mother, he never breaked.

turn in to my drive way, left turn and I was turning in front of him, there was a far distance then all of a sudden very close to me, he never touched breaks and no break marks on road. I think he was speeding and might have been able to react better. I know I got the ticket but not sure if I... View More

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answered on Feb 26, 2024

If it were me, I would appear if possible. A judge has options for reducing or even dismissing a ticket like this. An amended charge of improper driving (only 3 demerit points) or even dismissal with completion of a driver improvement clinic might be possible depending on the circumstances of the... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: On probation had court reporting date on Feb 5 Po text me told me didn't have to be present 13 Feb probation was first

Time police came to house looking for me for probation violation if turn myself in do I get locked up or get out on or Po told me no jail time was involved before court had 3 dirty urines last one told Po up front

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answered on Feb 26, 2024

Bond will be up to the judge, so nothing is guaranteed. Turning yourself in (and before too much time has passed) may improve the chances of a judge viewing your bond status favorably — especially if this is a first offense or second offense probation violation where jail time is either going to... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: Can I go to jail if I have Rheumatoid arthritis

I have severe Rheumatoid arthritis which also means I have no immune system. I require the assistance of a walker to walk and require a lot of medical attention.

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answered on Feb 1, 2024

Health conditions can be a factor in sentencing, but are not guaranteed to result in a sentence without incarceration. Gathering supporting documentation which details your diagnosis, hardships, medication(s) required, etc. would be a good idea, as that is something the judge could consider at... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: I have this 18.2-456(a) (6), i never gave false info. Or impeded justice, the court was 3.5 hrs away and i have no way
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answered on Jan 17, 2024

That particular subsection refers to a "willful failure to appear before any court or judicial officer as required after having been charged with a felony offense or misdemeanor offense or released on a summons pursuant to § 19.2-73 or 19.2-74." Court being 3.5 hours away isn't... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Sexual Harassment for Virginia on
Q: How can I get my son a bond? He doesn't have a criminal record or history.

He provided proof of his innoncence and I have provided proof also. His ex girlfriend is bringing these charges up. What can I do now?

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answered on Jan 5, 2024

If bond was not granted by the magistrate or by the judge at his arraignment, then he or his attorney will need to file a bond motion. Opportunity will be given at a bond hearing to present relevant factors for the court's consideration, including but not limited to the nature and... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Virginia on
Q: can i still get charged with Code of Virginia § 46.2-844 if the bus hadn't stopped completely?
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answered on Dec 28, 2023

The statute deals with a "school bus that is stopped" rather than one coming to a stop or simply displaying its warning signals. My reading of the statute is that there would need to be testimony from a witness and/or video footage establishing that the bus was passed while stopped.... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: I have a Warrant out for missing pretrial and they bonded me to treatment

I was bonded to a treatment center and had pretrial I went to pretrial before I left and then they made an appointment next month. I was still in treatment. My gf went to show documentation I was there and they stamped it and signed it and she has the copy also asked if I was going to get a warrent... View More

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answered on Dec 28, 2023

Without reviewing the pretrial violation letter I cannot say for sure what they're alleging. But be sure to bring any documents to court that indicate you were still in treatment during the scheduled pretrial appointment. Your girlfriend could be called as a witness if the court takes evidence... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Virginia on
Q: Do I have a right to view my motion of discovery (audio, video) before I agree to any plea?

I have read the motion. Most of it states the conversation is inaudible

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answered on Dec 12, 2023

There is no statutory or constitutional right to a plea offer from the prosecutor. If the prosecutor has extended an offer with a particular deadline attached to it, you may be out of luck. However, the Rules of the Supreme Court of Virginia do specify that you are entitled (for felony trials) to... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Virginia on
Q: I have a failure to yield ticket is it worth getting a lawyer to go to court
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answered on Nov 27, 2023

This will depend on a number of factors. These include, but are not limited to, the following: how comfortable you are testifying and presenting evidence in court, whether you feel like you have a legitimate chance of beating or reducing the charge as alleged and would prefer an experienced... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law, Constitutional Law and Health Care Law for Virginia on
Q: How are a spouse's gun rights affected by involuntary detention for mental health?

My spouse was involuntarily committed for mental health several years ago. He is planning to petition for restoration of his right. If he is denied, can I legally purchase a gun as long as I keep it in a biometric safe that he cannot access? Do I have any alternatives so that my right is not... View More

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answered on Nov 27, 2023

Your rights are not infringed by the statutes governing your spouse. That being said, you ought to take reasonable precautions to secure any firearms so that your possession of them is exclusive and is not a de facto possession by your spouse. It sounds like you are on the right track, both in... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Traffic Tickets for Virginia on
Q: I was pulled over in Fairfax Virginia for reckless driving ticket of 103mph in a 55 I’m afraid of going to jail I don’t

What to do to avoid jail this is my first ticket I have a clean record please advising what can happen and what should I do

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answered on Nov 28, 2023

Jail sentences are commonly imposed at speeds of 100 mph and higher. To improve your chances of a reduced penalty, you could consider performing community service at a charitable institution, proactively taking a driver safety course before the court date, have a calibration done on your... View More

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