Driver Not Guilty of Reckless Driving in Spotsylvania

Driver Charged with Reckless Driving after Hitting Virginia Radio Host

reckless driving, Spotsylvania, Virginia
Brian Strobel (pictured) was struck by a vehicle while walking his dog. Ralph Rupillo was accused of reckless driving in his death.

A Virginia man has been found not guilty of reckless driving in Spotsylvania, VA. He was accused of reckless driving in an incident that killed noted local radio personality Brian Strobel.

Ralph Thomas Rapillo was charged with reckless driving when his vehicle ran off the road and struck Strobel.

Judge Ricardo Rigual ruled in Spotsylvania County General District Court the evidence was not sufficient in supporting a reckless driving charge. He declared Rapillo not guilty.

The accident occurred in the early evening hours of March 7, 2012 as Rapillo was driving his 2001 Nissan near Harris Mill Court in Spotsylvania. His vehicle ran off the street, hit a mailbox and struck Strobel who was walking his dog off the roadway.

Strobel was thrown onto the hood of the vehicle and then to the ground where he was run over. He was pronounced dead on the scene. The vehicle then hit a garbage receptacle before coming to a stop in a nearby yard.

Rapillo stopped at the scene and dialed 911. It is unsure what caused Rapillo to lose control of his vehicle. Police say weather conditions were clear and there were no signs of drug or alcohol use. Phone records also show that the accused was not on his cellular device at the time of the accident.

Mark Gardner, Rapillo’s defense attorney, argued there was no evidence his client was driving recklessly: “The mere fact that an accident occurred does not automatically mean it was reckless driving. Mr. Rapillo has civil liability, not criminal.”

The Court agreed. Ralph Thomas Rapillo was found not guilty of reckless driving in Spotsylvania County, Virginia.

Do you need to speak with a Virginia Reckless Driving Lawyer?

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DUI and Reckless Driving Charges in New Kent Pursuit

Virginia Reckless Driving, DUI Charge in New Kent Chase

New Kent DUI reckless driving accident
Lopez-Morga slammed into a New Kent Sheriff’s cruiser on Interstate 64

A Richmond man is charged with reckless driving and DUI in New Kent County, Virginia, among other charges. He has been taken into custody.

Angel Rafael Lopez-Morga was arrested following a police chase and accident on Interstate 64. He is charged with attempted murder of a police officer after striking a New Kent Sheriff’s deputy. He was also charged with malicious wounding a police officer, eluding police and hit & run, in addition to driving under the influence and reckless driving.

The incident occurred when the New Kent Sheriff’s Office were alerted to an erratic driver on the highway. As police responded, they learned that the suspect had turned around and was driving his vehicle in the wrong direction on I-64.

New Kent Sheriff’s Sgt. Brent Thomas managed to pull the car over. After ignoring Thomas’s verbal commands, Lopez-Morga’s vehicle took off, hitting Thomas’s cruiser. The accident broke Thomas’s hand and left him with several other minor injuries.

Police say the suspect, when finally stopped, refused to exit his vehicle and resisted arrest.

Sgt. Thomas was taken to Memorial Regional Medical Center and released. Lopez-Morga was treated at VCU Medical center and later handed to police. He is currently being held without bond at Henrico Jail East.

Lopez is charged with DUI 1st and reckless driving, among other crimes, in New Kent County, VA.

Weiland Upton is a leading firm of  VA Reckless Driving and DUI Lawyers

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Reckless Driving in Fatal Dinwiddie Accident

Teen Faces Reckless Driving Charge in Dinwiddie, VA Crash

A teenager was charged with reckless driving in Dinwiddie, Virginia in an accident that left one passenger dead.

Virginia State Police say 19-year-old Timothy Quarles was driving a Nissan Maxima when he lost control of the vehicle in Dinwiddie, VA.The car hit a ditch and flipped at least five times before landing in a cornfield. 15-year-old Shaylin Herrin, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was ejected from the vehicle. Herrin was pinned beneath the car and died on the scene. A 16-year-old passenger sitting in the back seat also failed to strap on his seatbelt. He survived.

Police say neither speed nor alcohol were factors in the crash.


The accident occurred just after 9 PM on Carson Road in Dinwiddie County. Quarles, Herrin and another passenger were headed home from a youth group meeting at the First Assembly of God in Petersburg, VA.

Friends and family describe Herrin as a kind, respectful girl. She was a member of the JROTC at Dinwiddie High School and aspired to join the Air Force after graduating.

A day after the crash, administrators at Dinwiddie High School postponed SOL testing so that counselors and teachers could focus on grieving students.

Police charged Timothy Quarles with failure to maintain proper control— reckless driving in Dinwiddie County, Virginia.

Weiland Upton is a leading firm of Virginia Reckless Driving Lawyers

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Virginia to Collect Speeding and Reckless Driving Fines

Virginia Speeding and Reckless Driving Ticket Fines

Virginia speeding ticket, reckless driving
Hopewell police patrol Interstate 295 in Virginia

Virginia is attempting to curb the number of speeding tickets some cities and counties are issuing to drivers on the state’s roadways.

The Virginia General Assembly included a provision in the state budget declaring that if the amount of money a jurisdiction collects from speeding ticket and reckless driving fines exceeds 40 percent of its total revenue, the state will appropriate half of the money. Those funds will then be placed into the state’s literary fund which pays for school construction projects and teacher retirement plans.

The provision comes after motorist group AAA Mid-Atlantic reported that the Hopewell Sheriff’s Office was using “heavy-handed enforcement tactics” on a section of Interstate 295 in Hopewell, VA. The group calls the two-mile stretch of road the “Million Dollar Mile.” Approximately 1,000 speeding tickets are issued per month on I-295 in Hopewell.

According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Hopewell’s revenue from speeding and reckless driving tickets has increased from $160,000 a year when the I-295 project began to about $2 million last year.

Martha Meade with AAA Mid-Atlantic believes that the provision will allow police “to continue upholding the law and continue to collect … the appropriate amount of revenue.”

The Hopewell Sheriff’s Office has responded to the allegations by stating that officers only ticket drivers who speed over 81 miles per hour, which is considered reckless driving in Virginia.

Did you receive a speeding or reckless driving ticket in Virginia?

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DUI in Chesterfield after Man Hits Police Cruisers

DUI Arrest in Chesterfield County, Virginia

A man was charged with driving under the influence in Chesterfield, Virginia after ramming two police cruisers, injuring himself and one officer.

Twenty-two-year-old Courtney Orelien, of Wentworth Street in Chesterfield, was taken to CJW Medical Center for injuries suffered in the crash. He was initially charged with DUI, 1st offense after the incident. According to court records, Chesterfield police later charged him with driving on a suspended license, felony eluding, felony hit & run and assault on a law enforcement official.

Chesterfield Police Captain Kevin Smith said the officer injured in the accident was treated for minor injuries at CJW Medical Center and later released.

The Richmond-Times Dispatch reports the incident occurred when Orelien intentionally rammed a police vehicle and then fled the scene. The police officer pursued the suspect south on Jefferson Davis Highway. Less than a mile after the chase began, Orelien attempted a sharp right turn onto Swineford Road. The suspect hit another police vehicle stationed on Swineford Road that was waiting to join in the pursuit.

The pursuit ended after the second crash. Orelein is expected to appear in the Chesterfield County General District Court on June 19, 2012. He is charged with hit & run, eluding, driving on a suspended license, and DUI in Chesterfield, Virginia.

Weiland Upton is a leading firm of Virginia DUI Lawyers

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DUI for Henrico Pastor

Pastor Charged with DUI and Reckless Driving in Henrico, VA

DUI drugs Virginia Jay Bertrand
Jay Bertrand is charged with DUI in Henrico County

The pastor of a Varina church is charged with DUI in Henrico County, Virginia. He also faces a reckless driving charge for an accident that occurred earlier that day.

Police say Jay Bertrand, co-pastor of Varina Baptist Church, was arrested for DUI just hours after he was released from the hospital for injuries he received after running into a Krispy Kreme store.

The first accident occurred when Bertrand crossed three lanes of oncoming traffic, hit a sidewalk and rammed into the Krispy Kreme on Broad Street.

According to Bertrand’s family, he suffers from serious back problems and the crash was a result of a medical emergency. They say his back seized up while he was driving and he could not move. Bertrand was taken to an area hospital but refused treatment.

Hours after leaving the hospital, Bertrand was involved in another accident. Police say he failed to move when a stoplight on Patterson Avenue turned green, causing the woman behind him to drive around his vehicle. When the driver stopped at the following intersection, Bertrand ran into her. The driver was not injured. Bertrand told police he did not remember what happened.

Bertrand takes medications for his back problems. His family says that all the medications he takes are prescribed by a doctor and that the doctor had given him full liberty to drive and operate machinery. They emphasize that this was not a case of alcohol or drug abuse.

Bertrand is charged with reckless driving in the Krispy Kreme accident and driving under the influence of drugs (DUI) for the second incident in Henrico, VA.

Weiland Upton is a leading firm of Virginia DUI Lawyers

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Guilty of Reckless Driving in Dinwiddie

Woman Guilty of Virginia Reckless Driving

A woman pled guilty to reckless driving in a multi-vehicle accident that killed three people on Interstate 85 in Dinwiddie, Virginia.

Louise M. Vanloan pleaded guilty to reckless driving in the Dinwiddie General District Court. Vanloan was fined $200 as a result. The Court also suspended her license to drive for six months.

According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Vanloan was driving a Coach America bus carrying 49 students from North Carolina A&T State University. The bus was heading northbound on I-85 when the accident occurred.

The bus crashed into the pickup truck from behind, sandwiching it between the two larger vehicles. Three passengers in the pickup truck died; a fourth passenger was taken to a local hospital and later released. Vanloan was treated for minor injuries.Virginia State Police say the accident occurred as traffic along the interstate was diverted to the left lane due to road repairs. A logging truck, the first of the three vehicles involved in the accident, was stopped on the highway due to traffic, followed by a pickup truck carrying four passengers, including the three victims.

The Dinwiddie Commonwealth’s Attorney reviewed the state police investigation of the crash and chose not to charge Vanloan with manslaughter, stating there was no indication of criminal wrongdoing. However, reckless driving is a misdemeanor in the Commonwealth of Virginia and carries the potential of hefty fines, jail time and driver’s license suspension (Dinwiddie reckless driving).

Are you in need of a Virginia Reckless Driving Lawyer?

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