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

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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.

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.

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

Trial in Absence Blog

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

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Trial in Absence

Blog - Trial in Absence
Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com


Often people contact me who do not live locally and they ask whether they need to appear for court. For traffic infractions that do not involve an accident, I can usually appear on behalf of my clients. However, for misdemeanors and accident situations we have to look at each individual case to evaluate whether the judge would permit the client’s absence and whether we would be likely to obtain the best result in the client’s absence.

I had three recent cases in which I appeared on behalf of clients in their absence.
10/07/19: Speeding 76/60, amended to defective speedometer, which carries no demerit points.
10/10/19: Reckless driving by speed, 85 / 65, amended to improper driving, avoiding the misdemeanor and reducing the demerit points and the length of time the charge will be reported by DMV.
10/15/19: Speeding, 64/45, amended to defective equipment with no demerit points.

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

Guilty of Reckless Driving

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

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Guilty of Reckless Driving

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


Mark, why are you writing about someone who was found guilty of reckless driving? To warn you not to make matters worse when you see police lights!

My client was charged with reckless driving by speed at a speed where judges will often amend the charge from reckless driving to speeding. However, instead of stopping immediately for the state trooper, my client just kept driving. The trooper testified that he activated his lights for ¾ mile but my client kept driving, that he then activated his siren, but my client kept driving, that she stopped for a red light, but took off again when the light turned green, and that she then continued driving despite lights and sirens. Finally, my client stopped suddenly in the left lane. The trooper graciously refrained from charging my client with evading / eluding police or from arresting her at the scene and instead issued her a summons for Reckless Driving by speed. However, the judge was not impressed when my client had no explanation for the failure to respond to the trooper’s emergency equipment and refused to amend the charge from reckless driving.

If you see police lights, then you are required to yield. Move promptly to the right lane or shoulder to permit the police to pass you. If you realize the police lights are for you, then pull off of the road as soon as possible. You may proceed to a safe place to pull over if there is no shoulder or no light, but do it quickly and do not pass reasonable places to pull over.

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

Reductions & Dismissals

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

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Reductions & Dismissals, and Some Great Deals !!

Traffic Court Reductions & Dismissals
Posted by Lawyer Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC - Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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The week, or so, of September 10-19, 2019 was a lot of fun for the clients of Matney Law, PLLC.
9/10: Speeding, 50/35. Amended to defective equipment despite client having two prior speeding tickets on her DMV transcript. No DMV demerit points!
9/11: Speeding, 49/35. Dismissed with only the payment of court costs!
9/12: Driving with Suspended License, 4th offense. Amended to Driving without a license with only a $100 fine. This avoided a mandatory sentence of 10 days of jail and 90 days of license suspension.
9/16: Speeding, 73/55. Amended to defective equipment. No DMV demerit points!
9/17: Reckless Driving by Speed, 85/55. Dismissed without a fine or court costs! Avoided criminal misdemeanor and DMV demerit points.
9/17: Reckless Driving by Speed, 104/65. Jail sentence limited to one weekend despite 39 mph over the limit and over 100 mph. The Peninsula judges start considering jail at 90 mph and at 30 miles over the speed limit regardless of the speed limit.
9/18: Speeding, 63/45. Amended to improper equipment. No DMV demerit points!
9/19: DWI, 1st offense. Amended to Reckless Driving. Avoided the stigma of DWI and the ignition interlock machine and reduced the restricted license period from 12 months to 6 months.
9/19: DWI, 1st offense. Avoided active jail sentence despite an accident with injuries and presence of an illegal substance in client’s system.

Got a Speeding Ticket call Mark Matney at Matney Law PLLC

You were going how fast?

Got a Speeding Ticket call Mark Matney at Matney Law PLLC

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You were going how fast?
Reckless Driving & Speeding Charge
Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA

www.matneylawpllc.com
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I traveled out of the local area in September to help someone who was charged with Reckless Driving at 90 in a 55 mph zone – that’s right, 35 mph over the limit. The officer suspected that my client was actually racing another driver. My client could have been more cooperative with the officer, but despite this we were able to avoid any active jail! In fact, he ended up with only a $100 fine to pay and 30 days loss of license. Amazing when you consider that many judges start putting people in jail at 30 mph hour and the maximum license suspension for reckless driving is 6 months!!

Another client in a local court received an amendment of her charge from Reckless Driving, 92 in a 70 mph zone, to Speeding at 10 mph over the limit. This result avoided the criminal misdemeanor conviction and reduced the DMV reporting period from 11 years to 5 years.

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

Where’s the beef

Charged with a DUI call Matney Law PLLC 757-784-3507

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Where’s the beef?

Posted by Mark Matney of Matney Law PLLC Newport News VA
www.matneylawpllc.com
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Where's The Beef...  Do you remember the Wendy’s commercial with the three ladies sliding around in the back seat of car as the searched for the beef in the competitors’ hamburgers?  Sometimes I face the situation of “Where’s the officer?” Often people ask me if their case will be dismissed if the police officer does not show up for court. The answer is … maybe! It depends on the reason the officer is not present, the type of case, and the judge.  Matney Law PLLC is a law firm located in Newport News Virginia, that specializes in DUI and Traffic Court defense.  Check out or Avvo Reviews...

If The Charge Has Been Less Serious

This morning a state trooper was not present for court and the judge announced that the trooper was working at an accident scene and would not be able to arrive within a reasonable period of time. Since the trooper had contacted the court with an explanation for his absence, the judge continued his cases. My client today is facing a very serious reckless driving charge that could result in jail time and license suspension, so he was glad to have the court date continued to a new day. However, if the charge had been less serious, such as a speeding ticket or a low speed reckless driving case, the judge may have been willing to permit us to proceed in the absence of the trooper.

Matney Law PLLC - DUI Attorney - Newport News VA

DUI/DWI Defense Lawyer - Newport News Virginia

In two other recent cases, however, the charges against my clients were dismissed when the police officer did not appear for court. These cases involved a trooper who did not appear and did not notify the court of an excused absence, such as training or illness. Both clients avoided Reckless Driving by Speed.  At other times, it is a witness who is missing. A client’s accident case (unsafe lane change) was dismissed last week when the officer’s witness did not arrive. Sometimes judges will give the police a continuance in this circumstance. However, I spoke with the officer and showed him my client’s driver improvement course certificate and other court preparations and the officer agreed to the case being dismissed instead of moved to a new date.