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Reckless Endangerment

Connecticut Reckless Endangerment Charges

Most crimes in Connecticut involve intentional conduct—that is, conduct which an individual chooses to deliberately and purposefully engage in, even though the conduct may be against the law. However, there are crimes in Connecticut that do not require a showing of intent. Those crimes require a degree of “recklessness”. Specifically, if you are acting so unreasonably and dangerously that you could cause injury or have caused injury or damage to persons or property, then you could be charged and found guilty of a felony or misdemeanor recklessness crime such as Reckless Endangerment, Reckless Driving or Reckless Manslaughter.

“Reckless Endangerment” is one of those crimes with which police tend to charge an individual who has put themselves or third parties at risk of injury, or has actually caused injury to third parties. It is a broadly written criminal charge that can often apply to a laundry list of situations. This charge is often tacked on to an arrest when other lives have been put in danger. Thus, if you have been charged with Reckless Endangerment in Stamford, Greenwich, Norwalk, Darien, New Canaan, Fairfield, Westport or elsewhere in Connecticut, you should immediately get in touch with one of the experienced Reckless Endangerment lawyers at Mark Sherman Law to fully understand the recklessness charges brought against you by the State of Connecticut and learn how we can assist you in your defense.

What is Reckless Endangerment?

Reckless Endangerment is codified in the Connecticut General Statutes §§ 53a-63 and 53a-64. A person can be found guilty of Reckless Endangerment in the First Degree under C.G.S. § 53a-63 if such person—with extreme indifference to human life—recklessly engages in conduct which creates a risk of serious physical injury to another person. Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree under C.G.S. § 53a-64 is the lesser charge which occurs when the person engages in conduct which creates a risk of just physical injury (as opposed to serious physical injury) to another person. The third party could be anyone: a spouse, sibling, stranger, or friend. It could even be a member of an opposing sports team if a particular game or match gets too violent.

Ask any top Greenwich or Stamford criminal attorney or lawyer—police and prosecutors err on the side of caution in charging these two crimes. Their concern is usually that the recklessness stems from something more serious going on with the suspect—perhaps substance or alcohol abuse, mental health issues, or some sort of pattern of outright irresponsible or self-destructive behavior. Thus, it is important to work with an experienced Connecticut Reckless Endangerment attorney to persuade the Court and prosecution that any alleged recklessness was an anomaly or isolated incident.

Reckless Endangerment Penalties under C.G.S. § 53-63 and C.G.S. § 53-64

While both of these Reckless Endangerment charges are misdemeanors, a First Degree Reckless Endangerment charge is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in jail, a $2000 fine, and probation. Second Degree Reckless Endangerment is a Class B misdemeanor, punishable by up to 2 years in jail, a $1000 fine, and probation. If convicted of either of these crimes, the conviction will remain on your criminal record permanently and will come up on any background check conducted by a potential landlord, employer, or graduate school. So if you are not careful, what might have initially may been an honest mistake in your conduct could escalate to a Reckless Endangerment charge and conviction.

What Kind of Conduct Can Lead to a Connecticut Reckless Endangerment Charge?

We often get calls from clients asking why they have been charged with Reckless Endangerment. For instance, if you are accused of DUI / DWI or Reckless Driving (for driving over 85 miles per hour), and have passengers in your vehicle, Connecticut police will often tack on a Reckless Endangerment charge for each additional person in your automobile. Other examples of Reckless Endangerment conduct that we have seen include shooting a gun or BB gun into a crowd or out a window, inappropriate and dangerous pranks and practical jokes such as sabotaging someone’s car or slashing someone’s tires, participating in a brawl or gang fight, or racing on a public highway or street. All of these activities put many human lives in danger. In cases like these, police will not hesitate to add Reckless Endangerment charges to a criminal arrest charging document.

Fighting Connecticut Reckless Endangerment Charges.

At Mark Sherman Law, our Reckless Endangerment lawyers will exhaust every option possible to try to help you avoid a criminal conviction. Our “two-attorney” review process stands out among our competitors. At least two of our attorneys will carefully review the police reports in your case for errors, inconsistencies and constitutional defects. We will explore the availability of court-sponsored diversionary programs such as the Accelerated Rehabilitation Program, which if successfully completed, can in many cases allow the Court to dismiss your Reckless Endangerment charge in its entirety and erase it off of your record. But perhaps the most important piece in fighting a Connecticut Reckless Endangerment charge is to convince the court and prosecution that any allegation of reckless conduct of our client is completely out of character and inconsistent with our client’s reputation and character. Good people make mistakes. The lawyers at Mark Sherman Law recognize that fact and will work aggressively to attempt get your Connecticut Reckless Endangerment charges dismissed as quickly as possible.

Contact a Reckless Endanger Lawyer at Mark Sherman Law Today

So if you find yourself facing Reckless Endangerment charges in Stamford, Greenwich, Darien, New Canaan, Fairfield, Westport or any other Connecticut courthouse, do not wait until it’s too late. Call one of the experienced Reckless Endangerment criminal attorney at Mark Sherman Law today. Our rates are competitive, and we are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to take your call. Call us today at (203) 358-4700.

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