Navigating Divorce in the Rockies: Unique Challenges in Colorado
February 22, 2024READ THE POST
Traffic violations are common occurrences on the roads of Colorado, but not all traffic violations are considered minor infractions. Some traffic violations in the state can result in criminal charges and severe penalties.
In this blog post, we will take a closer look at some of the most common traffic violations in Colorado that can result in criminal charges, the consequences of these violations, and the laws that govern them.
Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a serious crime in Colorado and can result in severe penalties. Our state has strict laws against drunk driving and operates a zero-tolerance policy for drivers under the age of 21. If a driver is found to have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher, they can be charged with DUI.
Even penalties for a first-time DUI offense in Colorado can be life-changing. They include fines ranging from $600 to $1,000, imprisonment for up to one year, community service, and mandatory alcohol education and therapy. And those don’t even include the administrative penalties you will be dealing with, including the loss of your license.
Repeat offenders, as you might imagine, face even more severe penalties, including longer imprisonment, higher fines, and mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device.
Being convicted of a DUI can impact every area of your life in a negative way, and the consequences will continue for years to come. If you are charged, you need the strongest defense possible.
It should surprise no one that Colorado has strict laws against leaving the scene of an accident. If any driver is involved in an accident and it results in property damage, injury, or death, they are required by law to stop and provide their information to the other driver or to authorities. If you fail to do so, you can find yourself facing criminal charges and severe penalties.
Moreover, these types of crimes are on the rise in our state. Because of that, you can be sure that law enforcement will be on the lookout for them, and if you are charged, that prosecutors will fight hard for maximum consequences.
Hit-and-run penalties in Colorado vary, but all are quite harsh. If the crash results in property damage, it’s a class 2 traffic misdemeanor with up to 90 days in jail and up to $300 in fines. Bodily injury is a class 1 traffic misdemeanor with up to a year in jail and up to $1,000 in fines. Serious bodily injury and death are both felonies, with up to six years in prison for the former and 12 years for the latter.
Reckless driving is another traffic crime in our state that can result in criminal charges and severe penalties. What exactly is reckless driving? Colorado defines it as operating a vehicle in a manner that disregards the safety of others and their property. This can include excessive speeding, tailgating, and driving aggressively.
If you are charged with reckless driving in Colorado, it is a class 2 traffic misdemeanor. Consequences can include fines of up to $1,000, up to six months in jail, license suspension, and community service. Repeat offenders face even more severe penalties, including extended imprisonment, higher fines, and mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device.
This one may not seem as serious as the crimes listed so far, but don’t tell that to our lawmakers. Drivers in Colorado who continue to operate a vehicle with a suspended or revoked license can face criminal charges and severe penalties.
The state has strict laws against driving with a suspended or revoked license, and the penalties can vary depending on the circumstances of the offense and the number of previous convictions.
In most cases, penalties for driving with a suspended or revoked license in Colorado can include fines of up to $500, up to six months of jail time, license suspension, and community service. Repeat offenders face even more severe penalties, including longer imprisonment, higher fines, and mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device.
Speeding is a common traffic violation in Colorado, but not all speeding violations are considered minor infractions. While most speeding violations are considered traffic infractions and can result in fines and points being added to a driver’s license, excessive speeding can be considered reckless driving and can result in criminal charges and severe penalties.
Penalties for excessive speeding in Colorado can include fines, imprisonment, license suspension, and community service. Repeat offenders face even more severe penalties, including longer imprisonment, higher fines, and mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device.
As you can see, not all traffic violations in Colorado are created equally. While many are classified as minor infractions, others are considered major crimes, and the specific classification and penalties for these violations depend on the nature of the violation and the laws of our state.
Bottom line? Don’t just assume something isn’t a big deal because it’s a traffic violation. Know the law and the penalties you’re up against, and make sure you start building your defense immediately.
About the Author:
Andrew Bryant is a well-respected Colorado Springs criminal attorney who has been practicing in the area for years. A Colorado native, he returned to the home he loves after graduating from the University of Kentucky College of Law. Now, he uses the knowledge he gained as an El Paso County District Attorney to fight tirelessly for his clients’ rights. He is AV-Preeminent rated, has been recognized for his work by The National Trial Lawyers, and has been named to Best of the Springs lists by The Gazette for years.
Contact The Law Office of Andrew Bryant today for a free consultation concerning your criminal or family law case. You are just a click away from a top-rated and respected team with the experience and tenacity to ensure you get the best legal services offered in Colorado Springs – call or email now.