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Do I need criminal defense for traffic offenses in Rhode Island?

On Behalf of | Mar 18, 2022 | Criminal Defense

Rhode Islanders might think that a criminal defense is only needed when they are facing what might be categorized as “serious” violations like allegations of robbery, drug charges, violence and white collar crimes. However, any time a person is confronted with accusations of wrongdoing, it can present problems in every conceivable way. That includes traffic offenses. Many incidents in which a person was given a traffic violation can be fought. In some cases, the citation could be due to a mistake. It is especially important to know how to create a viable defense.

License plate mix-ups could lead to wrongfully issued traffic violations

While the Rhode Island Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) asserts that mix-ups over license plates are infrequent and quickly resolved, there are cases in which people get citations for violations they did not commit with vehicles they do not own. Particularly, one case highlights how this can happen and the problems it can cause. A man was consistently getting warnings and citations through the mail saying that he was speeding. As the warnings and citations continued, he realized that there was a mistake and he was getting blamed for speeding in a truck that he had not owned for almost a decade.

Having canceled his registration in 2013, he did not realize that the license plate number was said to have been on the speeding vehicle. Because the violations were in different jurisdictions, he needed to fight the charges with separate police departments. They occurred all over Rhode Island. Even though the DMV gave the man a letter about his case, he still needs to fight them individually to avoid the fines and the consequences for speeding. Ramifications might include a license suspension, a revoked registration and more. Another concern with the mistaken license plate number is if something more serious than speeding occurs like a collision with injuries and fatalities. The actual driver of the vehicle was found and warned about exceeding the speed limit.

Traffic offenses can be addressed with legal assistance

While this might be legitimately unusual, it is still a problem for a person who is receiving traffic tickets and warnings for things they did not do. If, for example, a person needs to drive for work and is stopped by law enforcement because of a revoked license without even knowing it had happened, it will obviously be problematic. Their livelihoods and even freedom could be at stake. With traffic violations, it is imperative to understand the value of a criminal defense. The case could be dismissed, the fines reduced or other positive outcomes can be achieved. Having help is important even for something that seems relatively innocuous.