If you have been arrested for endangering another individual in a reckless manner, then expect some serious repercussions from the law.
You might face up to two years in jail. So, don’t delay in hiring a reliable Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer. Find one as soon as you are charged so that he or she can reduce the harsh penalties against you. Only a dedicated, creative, and aggressive lawyer can get you out of these kinds of situations.
Things to know about recklessly endangering another individual
In Pennsylvania, you need to know the following things. If the prosecutor is able to prove these charges against you, the court will find you guilty of reckless endangerment:
- You are accused of exposing someone else, through your own conduct, to a situation that could result in serious injuries or death.
- This crime is a second-degree misdemeanor
The most important thing to understanding reckless endangerment charges is generally a concept known as REAP. REAP stands for Recklessly Endangering Another Person. This is centered on whether your action was actually reckless and dangerous or not. The police might have arrested you because they thought that what you did was reckless, but that might not be the case in reality. Often, REAP charges accompany other charges.
What do I do if I get charged with this offense?
The decision of the police to arrest you will depend on a lot of factors. For example, if the police find illegal substances in your car or detect alcohol on your breath after an accident, then they might consider your actions to be reckless.
- This crime is sometimes paired with another crime – that of stalking. If you are convicted under REAP, and then later are accused of stalking, you might find yourself facing a felony offense instead of a misdemeanor.
- Your actions might not be as significant as their outcome. For example, if the safety of a child was threatened because you used a power tool near him/her while drunk, and the child was injured, you might be charged with reckless endangerment. If nothing happened, it might be considered simple negligence.
You should not talk to either the cops or the prosecutors in the absence of your lawyers. They might twist your words and use them against you while preparing the case. Be patient, calm, and extremely polite. If they ask you about anything, tell them that you need a Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer by your side before you can reply to their questions.
Reckless Endangerment Defenses
The most common defense to these charges is that the accused was not reckless, merely negligent. This is successful so often in part because the charge can be placed in so many different situations.
Other defenses that can be used include self-defense, mistaken identity, actions were not intentional but rather, accidental, lack of evidence, and that there was no danger of serious bodily injury or death from the accused’s actions. As always, the specific defenses an attorney can use will depend upon the circumstances of the case.