What is Aggressive Driving?

In Arizona, Aggressive Driving is a crime. What is Aggressive Driving? The crime of Aggressive Driving is defined as a progression of unlawful driving that involves:

1) Speeding and at least two of the following violations:

Failure to obey a traffic control device.
Passing another vehicle on the right by driving off the main traveled portion of the roadway.
Unsafe lane change.
Following a vehicle too closely.
Failure to yield the right-of-way.

2) The accused person’s driving must also be an immediate hazard to another person or vehicle.

Defense of an Aggressive Driving Charge

Just because and officer feels your driving was inappropriate or aggressive, does not mean that your driving behavior necessarily meets the elements of an Aggressive Driving charge. The fact that it is a criminal charge entitles you to all the protections afforded anyone charged with a crime. Because the charge is criminal, there will be a prosecutor involved. The prosecution must prove your Aggressive Driving charge by the same burden of proof that is necessary to prove a homicide case. Police officers who routinely come to court on civil traffic violations and have their civil traffic violations upheld with a much lower burden of proof, may find themselves unprepared to meet the burden of proof in a criminal case. There are very specific elements that must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt for the prosecutor to obtain an Aggressive Driving conviction.

Consequences of Aggressive Driving

A criminal conviction results in punishment. What is the punishment for Aggressive Driving? Arizona drivers should be aware of the consequences of Aggressive Driving. Depending on the facts of your case, driving history, and any other criminal history, the consequences of Aggressive Driving may include:

Jail time
Points accessed to your driving record
Potential suspension or revocation of your license
Higher insurance, cancellation of insurance, or denial of insurance
Conviction of a crime resulting in a criminal record
Effects on immigration status, visas, and passports
Community service
Impound of your vehicle