What Constitutes “Reckless Driving” In California? 

California is a state famous for its sunny beaches, Hollywood stars and of course, great food. But California is also known for having some of the strictest driving laws in the country. If you’re not careful, you could find yourself facing charges of reckless driving.

So what exactly constitutes reckless driving in California? Well, according to California’s Vehicle Code VC §23103(a), reckless driving is defined as driving with a willful or wanton disregard for the safety of others or property. This can include actions such as excessive speeding, street racing, tailgating, or even weaving in and out of traffic.

But don’t worry, if you find yourself facing charges of reckless driving in California, it’s important to remember that you have rights and options. The first step is to seek the help of a skilled defense attorney who is familiar with California’s driving laws and can provide you with the best possible defense. Choosing Wallin & Klarich to represent your case puts you in a better position to receive the best outcome for your case. We have over 40 years of experience in Southern California. Call us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL  for your free consultation!

VC 23103(A) 

Reckless driving, also referred to as “dry reckless,” is classified as a misdemeanor according to California law. In accordance with California Vehicle Code 23103(a), it is considered a criminal offense to operate a vehicle on a public highway, street, or public parking facility in a manner that exhibits intentional and reckless behavior, posing a significant danger to the safety of others.

In order to convict you, the prosecution must prove:

  1. Operated a motor vehicle on a highway, street, or in an off-street parking facility; and
  2. Deliberately drove with reckless disregard for the safety of individuals or property.

It is important to note that while this reckless driving statute is in place to protect people from reckless driving, it also aims to protect property. So, you can be charged with reckless driving even if you were driving with no other people around. 


If you are convicted under VC 23103(A), you face the following:

  • Up to 90 days in county jail; and/or
  • $1,000 fine

If you are facing a reckless driving charge, it is important to have a skilled defense attorney on your side. Your attorney will be able to look at your case and determine which defense(s) can be raised. Our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have over four decades of experience representing cases like yours. Call our office today!


There are several defenses that can be raised in a reckless driving charge. Some of these defenses include:

  • The vehicle in question was not under your control while driving;
  • Reckless driving was not your intention;
  • Based on the circumstances of your case, you did not display wanton disregard for the safety of others;
  • Allegations of reckless driving do not apply as you were not on a public road;
  • Your driving behavior was a result of an emergency situation;
  • Reckless driving occurred under duress.

If you have been charged with reckless driving, you need our experienced attorneys on your case.  Our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have the experience you need. We offer exceptional service, experience, and affordable payment options to help you manage the cost of hiring a defense attorney. Call our office today for a free consultation!

VC 23103.5

According to California Vehicle Code 23103.5, the prosecution has the option to offer a plea agreement for reckless driving under Vehicle Code Section 23103 as an alternative to a violation of California’s DUI law. The record will indicate that alcohol or drug use may have been a factor.

This plea bargain is commonly referred to as a “wet reckless.” If you are facing a DUI charge, a knowledgeable attorney may be able to negotiate a reduction to a wet reckless charge. This can result in less severe consequences compared to a DUI conviction.

While wet reckless driving may result in less severe consequences than a DUI, the consequences can still have a lasting effect on many aspects of your life. For example, you may be at higher risk of losing your license if you are convicted of driving offenses in the future. It is important to have a skilled defense attorney on your case to help you receive the best possible outcome. Call our office today!

Contact Wallin & Klarich Today 

If you are facing a reckless driving conviction, you need an aggressive defense attorney to fight for your freedom. With 40+ years of experience, our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have helped thousands of clients win their cases or get their charges reduced to a lesser degree. We know the most effective defenses to argue on your behalf, and we will do everything in our power to help you achieve the best possible result in your case. 

You may not be aware of all your options. Calling our office costs you nothing, but picking up the phone could be the difference between years in prison and years of freedom. Let our skilled attorneys examine your case to find the best way to avoid prison.

Discover how our team can assist you. Contact us today, toll-free at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free consultation with a skilled defense attorney.