Traffic Virginia Improper Registration DUI Conviction Lawyers Orange County
Commonwealth of Virginia v. George
Defendant George drive on a public highway in Orange County on January 10, 1988, a Virginia state trooper stopped him and charged him with reckless driving, driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), having improper registration, and driving while his license was revoked or suspended (driving revoked). In District Court defendant was convicted of traffic offense of improper registration, DUI and driving revoked. The conviction for improper registration has become final, and the DUI and driving revoked convictions have been appealed. Defendant moves to dismiss the DUI and driving revoked charges.
- Whether the charges under Va. Code § 19.2-294 bars the prosecution of DUI and driving revoked charges?
The court observed that “It is conceivable for a person under the influence of intoxicants to drive properly. Many people not under the influence of intoxicants drive recklessly. A test of the identity of acts or offenses is whether the same evidence is required to sustain them; if not, then the fact that several charges relate to and grow out of one transaction or occurrence does not make a single act or offense where two separate acts or offenses are defined by statute, as in the instant case. The General Assembly changed the rule of Hundley not by amending § 19.2-294 but by adding Section 19.2-294.1 and limiting it to DUI and reckless driving cases. Section 19.2-294.1 is, by its terms, narrow in scope. The court does not find that the General Assembly intends for a single driving incident to give rise to only a single traffic conviction, regardless of how many statutes are violated, unless the statutes violated are those proscribing DUI and reckless driving. The motion to dismiss the DUI and driving revoked charges against George will be overruled.
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Article written by A Sris
These summaries are provided by the SRIS Law Group. They represent the firm’s unofficial views of the Justices’ opinions. The original opinions should be consulted for their authoritative content