Matney Law PLLC - DUI & Traffic Court Defense Attorney - Newport News, York County, Hampton

What happens if the officer does not appear for court?

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Lawyer Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC - Newport News Virginia - DUI and Traffic Court Lawyer

Mark Matney

DUI - DWI Lawyer

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What happens if the officer does not appear for court?

Posted by Mark Matney
Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com


It depends. If the officer is on a list for an approved absence, then the judge will usually continue the case to the officer’s next available date. This applies to officers who are in training, called up for military duty, or sick.

However, sometimes a judge will dismiss a case even when the officer is on an approved absence list if the officer was not available for court previously. For example, in one Newport News case this month the judge dismissed the charge of reckless driving by speed, 56/35, when the officer was on sick leave for two separate court dates.
When police officers leave their police departments, their cases are usually dismissed. This week a Hampton officer’s departure resulted in the dismissal of Reckless Driving – Accident and a Newport News officer’s resignation resulted in the dismissal of Reckless Driving - Parking Lot.

Matney Law PLLC - DUI & Traffic Court Defense Attorney - Newport News, York County, Hampton

What if the officer don’t have the radar calibration certificate?

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Lawyer Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC - Newport News Virginia - DUI and Traffic Court Lawyer

Mark Matney

DUI - DWI Lawyer

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What if the officer does not have the
calibration certificate for the radar or lidar?

Posted by Mark Matney
Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA

www.matneylawpllc.com

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The law enforcement officer must provide a certificate of accuracy that is dated within six months preceding the date the motorist was stopped. Otherwise, the speeding or reckless driving by speed may be dismissed. The officer is not required to show the certificate to the judge unless the motorist or his lawyer requests it.

I regularly review the law enforcement officer’s calibration certificates as part of representing my clients. The officers are professional and usually have their documents, but in the past two weeks two clients have benefitted from dismissals when officers did not having the necessary certificates. In one case, speeding 38/25 in Newport News, the officer did not have his lidar certificate. In the other case, speeding 45/30 in Hampton, the officer’s radar certificate was outdated.

Matney Law - DUI Lawyers - Traffic Court Attorneys - Williamsburg, Newport News, Hampton, Yorktown

Not Guilty of Speeding, 43 in 30

Matney Law - DUI Lawyers - Traffic Court Attorneys - Williamsburg, Newport News, Hampton, YorktownReckless Driving by Speed, 43 in 30

Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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This morning my client’s speeding case was dismissed! The officer was operating stationary Lidar (laser) in a 35 mph zone just past the point where the speed limit changed from 35 mph to 30 mph.

When I asked the officer for the certification for his lidar equipment, I found that he did not have a certificate that covered the date when my client was stopped. The Virginia Code provides that “no calibration or testing of such device shall be valid for longer than six months” (Sec. 46.2-882). The officer’s certificate must be dated during the six months preceding the date of the stop. It cannot be dated after the stop or more than six months before the stop.

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Lawyer Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC - Newport News Virginia - DUI and Traffic Court Lawyer

Mark Matney

DUI - DWI Lawyer

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757-784-3507

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Mark Matney will defend you in traffic court against DUI - DWI - Speeding Tickets

Reckless Driving by Speed, 95 in 60

Mark Matney will defend you in traffic court against DUI - DWI - Speeding TicketsReckless Driving by Speed, 95 in 60

Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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Today in the General District Court my client was facing a charge of driving 35 mph over the speed limit. While we waited for our case to be called, we observed another person charged with the same speed. In that case, the judge sentenced the driver to a fine, license suspension, and an active jail sentence. On the Virginia Peninsula, judges consider jail beginning at 30 miles over the speed limit and at 90 mph regardless of the speed limit.

However, for my client, our preparations resulted in avoiding jail except for being held at the courthouse for about an hour. What was the difference between the two cases? Prior planning precludes poor performance! My client made a special effort to accomplish a standard driver improvement course, a reckless and aggressive driver education course, and a significant number of volunteer hours. My client’s preparation before court helped him avoid returning from out of town to serve time in jail.

Each case deserves special attention and a strategy that considers the unique combination of the person charged, the judge who will hear the case, the officer who brought the charge, and the charge itself.

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Lawyer Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC - Newport News Virginia - DUI and Traffic Court Lawyer

Mark Matney

DUI - DWI Lawyer

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757-784-3507

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Matney Law - DUI Attorney - Newport News - Hampton Roads area of Virginia

A Promise & A Testimony

Lawyer Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC - Newport News Virginia - DUI and Traffic Court Lawyer

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A Promise & A Testimony

Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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A Promise & A Testimony

A promise: “Come near to God and He will come near to you.” James 4:8.

My testimony: I am a Christian who just happens to be practicing law. I hope my story will be an encouragement to you in this challenging and extraordinary time.

My journey of faith began in my childhood. As a child, I attended our neighborhood’s church where I participated in the choir and learned about the Bible through the Sunday School program. My father was not a Christian, but church was important to my mother.
By the time I reached high school, I knew a lot about church, the Bible and Jesus, but it was in a sheltered environment of our local church and neighborhood.

When I entered high school, I experienced several significant changes that left me vulnerable. Immediately before high school, my parents separated and I relocated from the home, church, neighbors and friends I had enjoyed from the age of two until the beginning of high school.

I ended up with a group of so-called friends who were pushing me toward drinking and drugs. I had to make a decision about what I really believed. Fortunately, when I prayed and asked God to guide me, I found that, “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were sinners Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Even when I was not pursuing God, he was pursuing me. God led me through a time of repentance and rededication that resulted in me putting my full faith in Jesus and accepting that he loves me and forgave me.

The result of entering into a relationship with Jesus is that I found the peace and purpose that I was missing as I floundered through high school. I now have hope and a secure future. I know that God has a plan and a purpose for my life and that I will live forever with Jesus in heaven after my physical body dies.

I would be glad to discuss my faith with you. Just contact me. I also share this simple statement of what the Bible teaches:

God’s plan—peace and life. God loves you and wants you to experience the peace and life He offers. The Bible says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting
life” (John 3:16, NKJV). He has a plan for you.

Our problem—separation from God. By nature, we are all separated from God. The Bible says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23, NKJV). He is holy, but we are human and don’t measure up to His perfect standard. We are sinful, and “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23, NKJV).

God’s remedy—the cross. God’s love bridges the separation between you and Him. When Jesus died on the cross and rose from the grave, He paid the penalty for our sins. The Bible says, “‘He himself bore our sins’ in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; ‘by his wounds you have been healed’” (1 Peter 2:24, NIV).

Our response—receive Jesus. You cross the bridge into God’s family when you accept Christ’s free gift of salvation. The Bible says, “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12).

To receive Jesus, a person needs to do four things:
• Admit that you are a sinner and you need the Savior.
• Be willing to turn from your sins and ask God to forgive you.
• Believe that Jesus died for you on the cross and rose from the grave.
• Invite Jesus to come in and control your life through the Holy Spirit. Romans 10:13 says, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Here’s a prayer you can pray to receive Jesus:
Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and separated from You. I want to turn from my sins and enter into relationship with You. Forgive me for my sins. I believe that Jesus is Your Son. I believe He died for my sins and that You raised Him from death to life. I want Jesus to come into my heart and I give Him control of my life. I want to trust Jesus as my Savior and follow Him as my Lord from this day forward. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Lawyer Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC - Newport News Virginia - DUI and Traffic Court Lawyer

5 Steps to Succeed

Lawyer Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC - Newport News Virginia - DUI and Traffic Court Lawyer

Mark Matney

DUI - DWI Lawyer

I Welcome Your Comments

5 Steps to Succeed With Your New Year's Resolutions

Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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Did you set financial goals for the New Year? As we approach the end of the first quarter of 2020 are you on track? Many people use the change of year to start something new. Unfortunately, few follow through. Think of all the new gym memberships and budgets that end up unused as January rolls into February. Here are 5 steps to success:
1. Choose Reasonable Goals: The best first step to accomplishing a new goal is to set a target you can reach within a reasonable period of time. If you are in debt, tackle the smallest one first. If you are starting or building your retirement savings, then set a monthly goal. Setting up an automatic investment plan is a worry-free way to keep you on track.

2. Write Your Goals Down: When you write down what you want to accomplish, you are 200% more likely to achieve it. When it is just a thought, then it is only a wish. Working with a financial coach will help you identify how much money is needed to reach your goals. A good coach will make sure you account for inflation and estimated rates of return.

3. Don’t Judge Yourself Too Severely. There will be ups and downs as you work toward your goal, don’t be discouraged. Maybe you had to use all of your emergency fund savings. Be excited that you had the money available and recommit to your original plan.

4. Focus On How You Will Feel When You Succeed. How will you feel when you become debt free, fully fund your emergency savings, or save enough to have the option to stop working? Imagine crossing the finish line! It will be 100 times better than you think!

5. Reward Yourself Along The Way. Did you pay off your first debt, finish building your emergency account, achieve a milestone in your retirement savings? Congratulate yourself and share with others what you achieved. You will be amazed how you can encourage others.

Mark Matney is a financial and legal services professional who helps families and businesses throughout Hampton Roads to get their money working for them so they can worry less about money and enjoy their lives more. Call him for a free consultation at 757-784-3507.

DUI Attorney Mark Matney - Matney Law PLLC - Newport News - Williamsburg

Thanksgiving Preparations

DUI Attorney Mark Matney - Matney Law PLLC - Newport News - Williamsburg

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Thanksgiving Preparations

Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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Matney Law PLLC of Newport News, Virginia focus on traffic cases on the Peninsula from Hampton and Newport News to New Kent. During the week before Thanksgiving we were busy helping clients with the following matters:

Speeding 64/45 in York County – amended to defective equipment
Reckless Driving 79/55 in Charles City County – amended to speeding
Reckless Driving in Work Zone in New Kent – amended to speeding
Improper Passing in Williamsburg – dismissed
Speeding 38/25 in Williamsburg – dismissed
DUI with 5 other charges in New Kent – 3 misdemeanors and a traffic infraction dismissed + drug charge reduced + minimum sentence for the DUI
Restricted License petition in Newport News – granted
Fail to Obey Traffic Signal with Accident in Newport News – dismissed
2nd DUI in Hampton – Minimum sentence for DUI, first offender program with ultimate dismissal for drug charge, 3 misdemeanors dismissed: Refusal 2nd, Driving with suspended license, Failure to appear.
There were also two accident cases in Newport News that were appealed to the Circuit Court for new trials.

Matney Law PLLC - DUI Attorney - Newport News VA

Reckless Driving in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court

DUI Attorney Mark Matney - Matney Law PLLC - Newport News - Williamsburg

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Reckless Driving in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court

Reckless Driving
Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News, VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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Two recent cases demonstrate that extra preparation by minors can have an extraordinary impact on their cases. The two clients, both age 17 when they were stopped, were charged with reckless driving at speeds over 100 mph. I have seen Circuit Court judges on the Peninsula sentence minors to active jail time at these speeds. However, both of these clients had their cases dismissed. No reporting to DMV, no demerit points, no misdemeanor convictions, no insurance rate adjustments, no suspended licenses, no jail. The charges were outright dismissed.

For the first case, the young lady was placed on house arrest with an ankle bracelet pending the trial date. She was only permitted to leave her home to go to school and work and was not permitted to drive for most of the pretrial period. In addition to all of these complications, she volunteered many hours of community service before her court date. After court she had to avoid any new violations pending a review date. The second client, a young man, completed two driver improvement classes and volunteered before court. After the court hearing the judge required a significant number of additional community service hours and the avoidance of any new charges before his review date.

These clients helped me and my associate attorney, Abigail Hockett, to achieve the best possible results by following our preparation instructions and then exceeding the judge’s expectations before their review dates.

 

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Widespread Problems with Breath Tests

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Widespread Problems With Breath Tests

Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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Post by Matney Law PLLC, Newport News, Virginia...  Great article about breath testing.  Raises good issues regarding Virginia's presumption of reliability of the machines.  I participated in a breath science class led by John Fusco, who is quoted in this article.  New York times " We investigated widespread problems with breath tests for suspected drunk driving - and found that the closely guarded machines have helped convict thousands of Americans of a crime they may not have committed.  Here's what we found."

A million Americans a year are arrested for drunken driving, and most stops begin the same way: flashing blue lights in the rearview mirror, then a battery of tests that might include standing on one foot or reciting the alphabet.

What matters most, though, happens next. By the side of the road or at the police station, the drivers blow into a miniature science lab that estimates the concentration of alcohol in their blood. If the level is 0.08 or higher, they are all but certain to be convicted of a crime.

But those tests — a bedrock of the criminal justice system — are often unreliable, a New York Times investigation found. The devices, found in virtually every police station in America, generate skewed results with alarming frequency, even though they are marketed as precise to the third decimal place.

Judges in Massachusetts and New Jersey have thrown out more than 30,000 breath tests in the past 12 months alone, largely because of human errors and lax governmental oversight. Across the country, thousands of other tests also have been invalidated in recent years.

The machines are sensitive scientific instruments, and in many cases they haven’t been properly calibrated, yielding results that were at times 40 percent too high. Maintaining machines is up to police departments that sometimes have shoddy standards and lack expertise. In some cities, lab officials have used stale or home-brewed chemical solutions that warped results. In Massachusetts, officers used a machine with rats nesting inside.