Asked in Traffic Tickets for Minnesota

Q: Would a Court appointed attorney help a non resident of Minnesota with a speeding ticket of 100 mph? No alcohol involved

Winona County.

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2 Lawyer Answers
Jonathan Matthew Holson
Jonathan Matthew Holson
Answered
  • Traffic Tickets Lawyer
  • Rogers, MN
  • Licensed in Minnesota

A: The issue is not the residency. The issue is whether the ticket is charged as a misdemeanor or a petty misdemeanor. A petty misdemeanor does not carry the possibility of jail time and consequently you would not be entitled to court appointed counsel. But you would if the charge is filed as a misdemeanor. Check to see if the "endangered life or property" box is checked on the citation. If so, you can apply for a public defender. You definitely need representation. A conviction for over 100 mph will carry an automatic revocation of your driving privileges which will then been honored by the state where you live.

Thomas C Gallagher
Thomas C Gallagher
Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Minneapolis, MN
  • Licensed in Minnesota

A: Where the defendant lives makes no difference. Minnesota courts will appoint a Public Defender for those who qualify (based on indigency) for all "criminal" cases. Most traffic tickets are "petty misdemeanor" cases, which are not "criminal cases." As a result, the court will not appoint a Public Defender in a petty misdemeanor traffic case. But speeding over 100 mph can be charged as a "misdemeanor" crime. Look for a box marked " endanger person or property." Minn Stat Sec 169.89, subd. 1. That would enhance a petty misdemeanor to a misdemeanor. If you have questions, pick up the phone and call a criminal defense attorney in the area.

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