California Vehicle Code Section 14601.4 VC: Driving On A Suspended Or Revoked License And Causing Bodily Injury

1. Definition and Elements of the Crimedriving on a suspended  license

While driving on a suspended or revoked license is forbidden in any situation, there are various aggravating factors that can expose someone accused of driving on a suspended or revoked license to harsher criminal penalties. One of these aggravated driving offenses can be found in California Vehicle Code Section 14601.4 VC, which imposes enhanced penalties for driving on a suspended or revoked license and causing bodily injury to another person.

In order to establish that a defendant is guilty of this offense, a prosecutor must be able to prove the following elements:

  1. The defendant drove a motor vehicle.

  2. The defendant's driving privilege had been previously suspended or revoked for a conviction of California Vehicle Code Section 23152 VC or California Vehicle Code Section 23153 VC.

  3. The defendant had knowledge that his or her driving privilege had been suspended or revoked.

  4. AND the defendant performed an act forbidden by law or neglected a duty imposed by law in the driving of the vehicle, which act or neglect proximately caused bodily injury to a person other than the driver.
2. Related Offenses

Other similar or related offenses include:

  1. Driving on a Suspended or Revoked License - California Vehicle Code Section 14601 VC

  2. Driving with a Suspended License for a DUI Conviction - California Vehicle Code Section 14601.2 VC

  3. DUI Causing Injury - California Vehicle Code Section 23153 VC

  4. Driving without a License - California Vehicle Code Section 12500 VC
3. Examples

A man has his driving privileges suspended after being convicted for driving under the influence of drugs pursuant to California Vehicle Code Section 23152(e) VC. Despite knowing about the suspension, the man continues to drive. One evening he rear ends another vehicle and causes the driver of the vehicle to suffer a broken collar bone. The man could be charged criminally under California Vehicle Code Section 14601.4 VC.

In another example, the same man is driving despite having a suspended license when he is struck by another vehicle. The other driver was completely at fault and suffered major injuries as a result of the accident. The man could not be charged under California Vehicle Code Section 14601.4 VC because he did not negligently cause the accident. However, he still could be prosecuted for driving on a suspended license for a DUI conviction under California Vehicle Code Section 14601.2 VC.

4. Defenses to Driving on a Suspended or Revoked License and Causing Bodily Injury

As noted above, if the defendant did not cause the collision that resulted in injuries to another person, he or she would not be guilty under this particular section of California Vehicle Code Section 14601 VC. He or she still could be criminally liable for driving on a suspended or revoked license.

In addition, if the defendant did not receive notice of the suspension, he or she would not be guilty of this crime. The statute requires that the defendant was aware of the license suspension or revocation and chose to drive anyways.

5. Penalties

A defendant who is convicted of driving on a suspended or revoked license and causing bodily injury will be sent to jail for a minimum of ten days and a maximum of six months for a first violation. If the defendant has a prior conviction under California Vehicle Code Section 14601 VC, he or she would have to spend a minimum of 30 days in jail. While in jail, the defendant would not be eligible for work release, community service or any other early release program. In addition, the defendant would be required to install and maintain an ignition interlock device in his vehicle for a period of up to three years.

6. Criminal Defense for Driving on a Suspended or Revoked License and Causing Bodily Injury Cases

If you have been arrested for driving on a suspended or revoked license and causing bodily injury, it is imperative that you consult with a Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer immediately. As a former Deputy District Attorney with over 14 years of prosecutorial experience, Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney Michael Kraut knows how best to fight charges like this.

For more information about driving on a suspended or revoked license and causing bodily injury, and to schedule your free consultation, contact Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney Michael Kraut at the Kraut Law Group located at 6255 Sunset Boulevard, Suite 1480, Los Angeles, CA 90028. Mr. Kraut can be reached 24/7 at 888-334-6344 or 323-464-6453.

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