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In The State Of Arizona, What Is The Criteria To Be Reckless Or Negligent?

This is not a well understood definition, because although Arizona law does define what reckless or negligent means. It is a convoluted definition that most people would not understand upon hearing it. A lot of people tend to just throw the word around by saying that someone was acting recklessly or that someone was acting negligently, although when they are actually explained the legal meaning behind the word “reckless” or the word “negligent,” they would not understand it and neither would they be able to be sure whether it would apply to a given situation.

Unfortunately, the jury would be asked to consider this convoluted meaning, and I believe juries tend to base their decisions on the fact they really did not like what the person did and they felt that the person should be punished, rather than actually looking into the meaning of reckless or the meaning of negligent and then applying the facts of the case to the actual law as it had been defined in Arizona.

Juries tend to go with their guts rather than specifically focusing on the law itself, which is really unfortunate and it is not what our system is based on and it especially becomes very difficult when talking about the definition of recklessness.

Is This Very Different From Most Other States?

I have not done research about a lot of the other states, although I think that a lot of what happens in Arizona comes down to this being a very conservative state. We tend to punish people a lot harsher than they do in other states. I just read a story about someone in California who was driving and a pedestrian ended up going through his windshield. He drove away from the scene with the person, who was either on the grill or on the windshield, and he only ended up getting probation. If that had happened in Arizona, the person would have ended up getting probably close to a decade in prison.

How Would The Seriousness Of An Injury Play Into What Someone Is Charged With?

Technically, it would come into play with the prosecutor’s discretion. If the victim really was not injured very badly, then the person who caused the accident may not end up being charged with that aggravated assault, and instead they may just end up being charged with DUI. Arizona really applies its laws in a horrible way, because for someone to be assaulted, the defendant would only need to have placed someone in apprehension of physical injuries or created some sort of actual physical injury on them. This would be is a misdemeanor assault.

To knock that up from a misdemeanor assault to a felony assault, the prosecutors would normally allege there was either a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument involved. On top of that, the prosecutor would argue that there was a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument involved and that would be how they would make their way up to “Aggravated assaults a dangerous offense.”

This would become incredibly unfair to the people of Arizona because the prosecutor would be saying that a vehicle that someone was driving, whether or not they were impaired or reckless, serves as a way to get the charges enhanced from a misdemeanor to a felony charge and to pump it up from a felony to a dangerous felony offense, even though it would actually just be a vehicle.

Technically, if someone was driving towards a person who was in the crosswalk and simply scared the person, so the person who was in the crosswalk thought the car may run them over, even if the car never touched them, then technically the person driving the car could still be charged with aggravated assault dangerous because they placed the person in apprehension of physical injury while being reckless while using a vehicle. The driver of the vehicle could then theoretically be looking at five to 15 years in prison.

We do not usually see cases where someone would be charged just because another person apprehended a physical injury, because the prosecutors would usually be fairly reasonable and they would only do it where there was truly a significant injury or death in the case. Technically, under the law, the way it is applied and according to how the Arizona court system has interpreted the law, someone simply being scared of someone in a vehicle who happened to be drunk, could lead to that person being charged with an aggravated assault dangerous.

For more information on Negligence And Reckless DUI In Arizona, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling 480-900-0384 today.

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Brian Douglas Sloan


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Why DUI Attorney Brian Douglas Sloan?


19+ Years SOLELY Focused on DUI Defense


4,200+ DUIs Successfully Defended

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“I am one of only a handful of Phoenix DUI Lawyers that focuses solely on DUI Defense representation.”

I have spent my entire career SOLELY focused on Arizona DUI Defense Representation, having personally defended more than 4,400 Driving Under the Influence (DUI) clients in the past 19+ years.

If you’re looking for a Divorce Attorney, Tax Attorney, Civil Attorney, etc., I can comfortably say, "I’m not the one for you." I ONLY defend DUI cases in most of Maricopa County, Arizona.

Coming up with traditional, as well as outside-the-box motions and defenses for my clients, often with good results, is the hallmark of my practice.

Lawyers that say they are "aggressive" or "will fight for you" are a dime a dozen. They use these phrases because it is a proven advertising phrase. Being "aggressive" isn’t the same as being good, and is often used to put on a show to hide the fact that they aren’t doing anything meaningful for the client.

The same is true for the Lawyers claiming to do DUI Defense, and Criminal Cases, and Accident Cases, and Divorces, etc. A Jack-of-all-Trades is a master of none! By handling all sorts of cases, they take away from their ability to truly focus on DUIs, and keep up-to-date on the latest changes in DUI Defense Representation.

What I offer is intelligent, quality DUI Defense at an exceptional price. Unlike many other law firms, if you hire The Law Offices of Brian D. Sloan, you actually get me representing you, doing all the work, and working the case. You aren’t hiring one guy with all the experience, but getting the underling with very little knowledge or experience.

I work seven days a week on my client’s cases, and spend hours laying all my thoughts out for my clients in writing, so they can understand their options, and my recommendations. No other DUI Lawyer in the state does this. I try to do what I can to go above-and-beyond for my clients. I hate when the businesses I deal with nickel-and-dime me with hidden costs, and I take pride in not doing that to my clients.

I have not only taught other lawyers how to do DUI Defense Representation at statewide seminars, but I have produced DUI Legal Guides used by defense lawyers across Arizona.

I am one of Arizona's most award-winning DUI Defense Lawyers, as well as being recognized nationally. I was the only DUI Defense Lawyer in the United States named a "Power Lawyer" in a 2022 issue of USA Today

There are no other private Lawyers in Arizona that have personally defended more DUI cases than I have. And as a bonus, I offer a very reasonable flat rate for my legal services, with a payment plan, and without any hidden charges. This guarantees that I offer some of the most competitive rates among all Arizona DUI Attorneys, while being a well-documented and preeminent leader in the field of DUI Defense Representation.

Over the years, countless people have come to me after discovering that their first lawyer made a mistake, gave them false hope or false promises, or simply took their money and didn't do much to advance their case. And you would be surprised at how often this happens.

So, instead of wasting time and money on the wrong DUI Defense Attorney, do yourself a favor and get the proven and well-recognized best DUI Lawyer in Phoenix and the surrounding areas of Maricopa County.

You can reach me on my personal cell phone at 480-720-7839 for a Free ‘In Depth’ Consultation.

I personally defend DUI cases in urban Maricopa County City, Town, and Justice Courts, including:

Ahwatukee / Agua Fria / Arcadia Biltmore / Avondale / Buckeye / Chandler / Country Meadows / Desert Ridge / Dreamy Draw / Downtown / East Mesa / El Centro / Encanto / Gilbert / Glendale / Goodyear / Guadalupe / Highland / Kyrene / Litchfield Park / Maryvale / McDowell Mountain / Mesa / Moon Valley / North Mesa / Peoria / Phoenix / Queen Creek / San Marcos / San Tan / South Mountain / Scottsdale / Tempe / University Lakes / West McDowell / West Mesa / White Tank

For any other Courts in the State of Arizona, including Felony cases, I would recommend my associates on The Arizona DUI Team, whom I work closely with, but I am not the one personally representing the client.

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