Speeding Fairfax Virginia Lawyer Evidence Summons Offense
Greener v. Commonwealth
Defendant challenged the judgment of the General District Court for the County of Fairfax (Virginia), which convicted defendant of speeding. The charge identified the location of the offense as one county, but at trial, defendant presented evidence that it occurred in a different county.
- Whether the defendant was guilty of speeding in the county as charged in the summons?
At the conclusion of the Commonwealth’s evidence and again at the conclusion of the trial, defendant moved to strike the evidence and dismiss the charge based upon the evidence presented that the offense had in fact occurred in a county other than the one indicated on the summons. On this point, the evidence of the Commonwealth and that of defendant were in conflict. At the conclusion of all of the evidence and after defendant moved to strike the Commonwealth’s evidence that the attorney for the Commonwealth moved to conform the summons to the evidence. The court reversed and held that under Va. Code Ann. § 16.1-137, a court’s discretion in amending or issuing a new warrant in order to conform the warrant to the proof was not unlimited. When the evidence was concluded and defendant’s motion to strike was made, the court was bound to take the warrant as it then read. Throughout the trial, defendant had challenged the venue of the prosecution and accordingly, under Va. Code Ann. § 19.1-244, any question of venue was not waived. The court concluded that the defendant was not guilty of speeding in the county as charged in the summons, and dismissed the charge.
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Article written by A Sris
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