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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    4

    Default Negligent Driving Second Degree for Peeling and Burning Out

    My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: Washington, Pierce County, Tacoma

    Well I had just got off a long, stressful day at work, at about 2am, turning onto a main street(from a stop)I had a lapse of maturity and accelerated spiritdly, in a pickup this easily results in spinning of the tires in damp conditions. It may or may not have been my intention to do so, although I will say that sometimes doing something dumb and disruptive is how some immature people blow off steam.

    Anyway, before said occurance I made sure the road was clear, at 2am it was, except for 1 vehicle stopped at a red light down the street. Turns out this 1 vehicle was a Pierce County Sheriff. When asked the usual question, I responded with "was it that peel out back there?", in which he responded with a yes, without any other elaboration about speed, acceleration. When he came back with the ticket he explained how reckless driving is a serious crime that could result in jail time and loss of my license, but that he was not going to do that, he says that just in case i was not familiar with the rcw that means any spinning of the tires, exactly which rcw he was referring to was not clear. He hands me my infraction, he reminds me that he got it all on video,(as I was informed at first contact), tells me to pay it within 15 days, or I could lose my license due to fta. I get my documents back, reluctantly check the damage and it turns out I was being charged with negligent driving 2nd degree.(46.61.525), $550.


    Read plenty of the neg. 2 threads on here, did not come across many like mine, most from speeding. From my understanding, to be charged with the vague infraction of neg. 2 you must be observed doing something that 1)a normal person would not do 2) endangers or is likely to endanger people or property

    I met the 1st requirement, but could it be argued that peeling out 10ft down a empty road was not endagering(the truck was not drifting around or anything)? Or am i screwed. $550 sure is a lot of money, but negilent driving being on my record is what I'm most worried about.


    Were my actions stupid, yes. Did I learn my lesson? I learned how quickly I could lose my license and disrupt my life with dumb decisions. Nonetheless, I feel like this charge is a tad excessive, and would like to know my chances for getting it reduced(non-traffic?), or better yet making it go away. Deferrel has been used for speeding in Pacific county, so that's a no go, BTW was my deferred finding lost the second I was issued the ticket, or do I have to admit/be found guilty for this to happen(just so happens im on my 5th month of the 6 month probationary period) I'm thinking about going with a traffic lawyer, for I am not well versed with legal stuff, have a bit of social anxiety and most of all want the best chances not having this dumb action sky rocket my insurance rates

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,594

    Default Re: Negligent Second Degree for Peeling/Burning Out

    Here is the code:

    RCW 46.61.525
    Negligent driving — Second degree.

    (1)(a) A person is guilty of negligent driving in the second degree if, under circumstances not constituting negligent driving in the first degree, he or she operates a motor vehicle in a manner that is both negligent and endangers or is likely to endanger any person or property.

    (b) It is an affirmative defense to negligent driving in the second degree that must be proved by the defendant by a preponderance of the evidence, that the driver was operating the motor vehicle on private property with the consent of the owner in a manner consistent with the owner's consent.

    (c) Negligent driving in the second degree is a traffic infraction and is subject to a penalty of two hundred fifty dollars.

    (2) For the purposes of this section, "negligent" means the failure to exercise ordinary care, and is the doing of some act that a reasonably careful person would not do under the same or similar circumstances or the failure to do something that a reasonably careful person would do under the same or similar circumstances.

    (3) Any act prohibited by this section that also constitutes a crime under any other law of this state may be the basis of prosecution under such other law notwithstanding that it may also be the basis for prosecution under this section.

    By lighting up your tires you lost control. That is, you lost traction and your vehicle was then, arguably, out of control and potentially an uncontrolled rocket of destruction. If there were cars on the street, property, people, or anything else that could have been impacted as a result of your vehicle being out of control, then I would think the charge is appropriate.

    If you can afford it, you might wish to hire an attorney to assist you with this. It appears you may be able to defer this, or, get the fine reduced if handled properly.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    1,534

    Default Re: Negligent Second Degree for Peeling/Burning Out

    Burn-outs are probably the most common underlying offense for neg-2 citations - and they are regularly successfully prosecuted as such. You can be assured that the court has heard the "I didn't endanger anybody" defense many times before. As Carl points out above, the intentional loss of traction is more than enough to qualify as "likely to endanger any person or property" - note the statute says ANY person or property (that includes YOU and YOUR vehicle).

    I doubt there is anything anyone can do to "make it go away." However, an attorney can likely help minimize the penalties. Hiring an attorney will likely be more expensive in the short run, but could end up being cheaper in the long run considering higher insurance premiums, loss of license, etc.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Negligent Driving Second Degree for Peeling and Burning Out

    Update: I've requested a contested hearing, my court date was 2 weeks after I mailed in my ticket, seemed quick, business must be slow.

    Anyway with a family member being diagnosed with cancer and my general manager at work quiting leaving me to pick up the slack, the ticket lost priority and the court date has been coming up even sooner than I expected.

    Apparently Pierce County District Court will grant only 1 continuance under a new-ish policy, it can be scheduled through a surprisingly convenient online system. This presents me with a decision that I need help on:
    -I have a speeding ticket on a 6 month deferral period, which was filed on 1/15/15. Would it be worth it to postpone my hearing until a date after 7/15/15 to assure the old speeding ticket will be dismissed, whether this new ticket sticks or not? Or will the court see that I have already been ticketed for the neg 2, thus canceling my deferral, regardless if I the ticket has not been found committed or dismissed in court yet.
    -Or should I just put my trust in getting the ticket dismissed by an attorney by letting them use the 1 continuance to choose a date/judge that works for them. Is this even something that is normally important to attorneys? And ya, I have yet to hire one, contacted half a dozen today. Im new to this whole attorney thing, still figuring out the 'not screwing up things in my life' thing too.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Negligent Driving Second Degree for Peeling and Burning Out

    Well update for anybody who comes across this thread, hired an attorney, ticket dismissed. Dan is the man

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Negligent Driving Second Degree for Peeling and Burning Out

    It's good that your lawyer was able to work out a positive outcome.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Snohomish, WA
    Posts
    1,588

    Default Re: Negligent Driving Second Degree for Peeling and Burning Out

    U got lucky with your attorney, and saved a few.bucks. Don't do it again. Deferral is not an option for neg 2.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    18,340

    Default Re: Negligent Driving Second Degree for Peeling and Burning Out

    Quote Quoting Mwolfe45
    View Post
    Well update for anybody who comes across this thread, hired an attorney, ticket dismissed. Dan is the man
    How much did you pay your attorney to fix your "lapse of maturity"?

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