Under Virginia’s legal code, a conviction for grand theft auto may result in a jail sentence of up to 20 years. A 19-year-old resident, however, received a significantly reduced sentence while facing charges of stealing another individual’s car, eluding law enforcement officials and then taking them on a high-speed chase.
When deciding how the defendant should carry out his 14-year sentence, the judge may have taken into consideration that his actions occurred while under the influence of methamphetamine. As reported by The Lee Daily Register, the lenient sentence includes punishment for several charges specifically related to his use of an illegal drug.
Officials filed numerous felony offenses against the defendant including paraphernalia possession and driving under the influence, charges which may have resulted in severe penalties. Through the addition of the grand larceny offense and felony eluding, he could have received a jail sentence of 10-years for each count.
Serving a probation sentence
Felony convictions generally result in lengthy incarceration with high fines, community service and an order to pay restitution. By countering the prosecutor’s allegations, the case concluded with 11 years and 11 months of the young man’s sentence suspended, which the defendant must instead serve on supervised probation.
Probation in the Old Dominion State requires wearing an electronic monitoring device. An individual serving probation may also need to submit a sample of his or her blood, saliva and DNA, as noted on The Virginia Law website. Deviating from the terms set by the court may result in serving the remainder of a sentence incarcerated at a state prison.
Fighting a prosecutor’s allegations
When an individual faces several interrelated charges at once, he or she may experience extreme stress while contemplating a jail sentence that could last many years. A strong defense, however, may serve to reduce the severity of a prosecutor’s recommended punishment.