Road rage endangers many people across the country. However, drivers may not realize that road rage is also considered a crime. Traffic is often congested in Washington, with many drivers seeming clueless or rude. Combined with the stressful lifestyle, lack of sleep, and other factors common among Americans today, it may be no surprise that some drivers lose their patience. Others may be late for work or an appointment and attempt risky maneuvers to reach their destinations faster. These situations can be dangerous, but can they result in criminal charges?
Is Road Rage a Traffic Offense in Illinois?
Yes, road rage is considered a traffic offense in Illinois. The Illinois government defines road rage as driving in an aggressive way that could endanger the safety or property of another driver, bicyclist, motorcyclist, or pedestrian.
In Illinois, criminal charges for road rage are labeled as “reckless driving” charges. An officer can arrest the driver, who usually has their car towed away, and be responsible for the towing bill. The driver will also need to appear before a judge.
First, drivers must understand the legal difference between aggressive driving and road rage. Many people drive aggressively at some point. They may speed, follow other drivers too closely, or swerve in and out of traffic. Aggressive driving may also involve cutting others off, running red lights, and ignoring traffic signs. These actions may be intentional, or a driver may drive aggressively simply to get somewhere faster without meaning to upset others.
Regardless of the reasons, aggressive driving can be dangerous and will often result in traffic offense charges. On the other hand, road rage is considered a criminal offense because a driver engaging in this behavior has the intent to cause harm.
Definition of Road Rage
A driver can cross the line without warning from everyday or aggressive driving to road rage. Often, such drivers become angry without much provocation. However, it can be easy for otherwise safe drivers to lose their patience if someone else is rude or puts them in danger, inadvertently or not.
Access a Strong Defense Today
It might not take much to send a driver who is usually polite and rational over the edge, leading him or her to make later regretted actions. When facing charges, Washington residents are encouraged to seek an experienced defense. Call Maxey Law Office PLLC today at (509) 652-3330 or contact us online to schedule an initial lawyer consultation.