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TRAFFIC ADJUDICATION IN VIRGINIA - REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS, JANUARY 1977

NCJ Number
40387
Date Published
1977
Length
167 pages
Annotation
RESULTS OF A STUDY OF THE PROCEDURES AND OPERATIONS OF TRAFFIC ADJUDICATION IN VIRGINIA, CONTAINING BRIEF EXPLANATIONS OF EXISTING PROCEDURES, RECOMMENDATIONS FOR IMPROVEMENT, AND DISCUSSIONS OF EACH OF THE SUGGESTIONS.
Abstract
MATERIAL FOR THIS STUDY WAS GATHERED BY MEANS OF QUESTIONNAIRES SENT TO COURTS AND LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES, SITE VISITS TO COURTS, INTERVIEWS WITH SENIOR OFFICIALS OF THE STATE POLICE AND DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES, INTERVIEWS WITH COURT PERSONNEL, AND A PUBLIC OPINION SURVEY. INFORMATION WAS GATHERED ON THE PRACTICES IN VIRGINIA, THE PROCESS OF TRAFFIC ADJUDICATION, THE FLOW OF PAPER BETWEEN COURTS AND OTHER AGENCIES, AND OPINIONS OF PEOPLE INVOLVED IN AND AFFECTED BY TRAFFIC ADJUDICATION. BASED ON THIS INFORMATION, THE STUDY PRESENTS 30 RECOMMENDATIONS DEALING WITH SUCH AREAS AS TRAFFIC PROSECUTIONS, PRE-PAYMENT OF FINES, COLLECTION OF FINES AND COSTS, COURT APPEARANCES, RECORD RETENTION, ADJUDICATION OF JUVENILE TRAFFIC OFFENSES, AND TRAFFIC SUMMONS. FOR THE MOST PART, THE RECOMMENDATIONS SEEK TO 'FINE TONE' AND STANDARDIZE PRACTICES. TWO MAJOR CHANGES ARE RECOMMENDED, HOWEVER. THE FIRST RECOMMENDATION IS TO RECHARACTERIZE MINOR TRAFFIC OFFENSES AS 'TRAFFIC INFRACTIONS', REMOVING THEIR CLASSIFICATION AS MISDEMEANORS. THE SECOND RECOMMENDED ADJUSTMENT IS THAT ENHANCED PUNISHMENT OF A REPEAT OFFENDER BECOME THE EXCLUSIVE PROVINCE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES....DMC