LAWYER FOR JOYRIDING CHARGES IN PHILADELPHIA
Joyriding is when a person takes a car temporarily, without the intent to keep or sell it. In Pennsylvania, a joyrider will be charged with Unauthorized Use of Automobiles (known as "Unauthorized Use"). This is a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable by up to two years in jail. The Pennsylvania legislature defines this as:
3928 Unauthorized Use of Automobiles and Other Vehicles
•(a) Offense Defined - A person is guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree if he operates the automobile, airplane, motorcycle, motorboat, or other motor-propelled vehicle of another without consent of the owner.
•(b) Defense - It is a defense to prosecution under this section that the actor reasonably believed that the owner would have consented to the operation had he known of it.
It is important to note that you can provide a defense if the owner of the car would have given you permission to use the car at the time you were driving it. In situations where you believed you could've used the car, even though the owner did not give express permission for you to use the car. An example of this is when an employee uses a company car during company time, but doesn't get his boss to give him permission. If the employee believed that he could drive the car to conduct company business, he can present that defense to the court.
Most Unauthorized Use cases, however, are cases of someone breaking into a car and using it for a small period of time before they leave it somewhere. Under this scenario, you need effective representation so they don't charge you with other serious offenses, such as theft or carjacking.
FAILING TO RETURN A RENTAL VEHICLE IS ALSO UNAUTHORIZED USE
Failure to return a rental car is also considered unauthorized use of an automobile. There are times when a person decides to keep a rental car for an extra day. While this is not generally a problem, if you keep a rental car for too many days, the rental car company can revoke your right to have the car.
Many of these cases result from a person keeping their rental car for a week or more after they were supposed to turn their car in. A person is charged when he or she fails to return their rental car and does not stay in contact with the rental car company, or repeatedly tells the rental company they will return the car, but fail to do so multiple times.
CONTACT AN ATTORNEY TODAY TO IDENTIFY YOUR OPTIONS
It is also important to remember that you can be charged with many of the offenses above for one incident. As such, you need to be vigilant about protecting your rights. An experienced criminal defense attorney can identify if there are any issues you can use to fight the charges or obtain a favorable resolution of the case. The criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Greg Prosmushkin, P.C. have decades of experiences defending those accused of crimes.
If you have been accused of joyriding or failing to return your rental car, contact the criminal defense attorneys at Greg Prosmushkin, P.C. today for a free consultation.
This content was written on behalf of Greg Prosmushkin