arizona

The True Cost of a Speeding Ticket

Have you ever received a speeding ticket? Did you wonder where the money went after you paid the ticket? Most likely you and many others in Arizona contributed tens of millions to government programs through unnecessary citation costs.

Instead of local and state taxes contributing to government programs, Arizona legislation has shifted the burden to those who have committed a crime.

Over the last two decades, Arizona’s state-mandated surcharges went from 56 percent to 83 percent, according to the Arizona Republic.

When you pay the state $95 for a speeding ticket, you’ll also be required to pay for programs and flat fees that could raise the price to as much as $243.

Because of these surcharges you’ll be paying:

  • $95 for the ticket
  • $79 for state programs
  • $13 for police training
  • $2 for a victim’s rights fund
  • $7 court-restitution fund
  • $27 for court technology
  • $20 for the county probation department.

Penalizing drivers with additional costs and surcharges should not be practiced by the state of Arizona. Government-run programs should receive their funding from taxpayers, without drivers picking up the remainder of the tab.

Along with the financial consequences, there also can be a personal impact from a criminal speeding ticket. In Arizona, a criminal speeding ticket is a class 3 misdemeanor. If you’re found guilty, every time you’re asked if you have a criminal record, you’ll have to answer “yes”.

At Corso Law Group, we understand the consequences and the true costs of a speeding ticket. If you are charged with speeding, the lawyers at Corso Law Group will fight for you and obtain the best possible outcome.

Click for a free consultation or call (480) 471-4616.

Phoenix Officials Pushing for Body Cameras for All Patrol Officers

Body cameras for all Phoenix police officers might be on their way. Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and Councilwoman Thelda Williams have asked for all patrol officers to wear body cameras in the next three years.

However, this request comes with an expensive price tag. Last year, Phoenix Police Chief Joe Yahner said equipping police officers with body cameras would cost more than $3.5 million.

Despite the high price, Stanton and Williams are asking for the proposal to move forward due to the camera’s success in the Maryvale precinct.

In a memo to City Manager Ed Zuercher, Williams and Stanton said:

“In the areas where cameras were used, Phoenix saw significant drops in complaints against officers, more effective processing of cases in court and improved evidence in the prosecution of domestic-violence cases.”

If the proposal passes, behavior among police officers might improve. With the potential to make police officers more trustworthy and transparent, body cameras seem ideal. The body cameras seem a natural fit in the courtroom as well. In court, it’s usually the police officer’s word versus the defendant’s testimony. With body cameras on every officer, cases could change for defendants in the Valley. By using video evidence, cases will become clearer since video footage will be available for review.

Putting body cameras on all police officers could move Phoenix toward a new generation of policing by building trust between the officers and the communities they serve.

Scottsdale DUI Lawyers at Corso Law Group Warn of Increased DUI Patrols During Arizona Spring Training

During the first week of spring training in 2015, the Arizona Department of Safety reported 59 DUI arrests near the games. With millions of fans expected to turn out this season, baseball fans should be aware that increased DUI patrols are expected, according to Scottsdale DUI lawyer Christopher Corso.

As fans around the state prepare for the games, it’s important to note that after a game is over, the Center for Advancing Health estimates that 40 percent of fans will still have alcohol in their body.

“During spring training, law enforcement will not hesitate to arrest or give citations to those who who appear to be acting irresponsible while under the influence,” said Corso, founder of Corso Law Group. “If you or someone you know finds themselves in a difficult legal situation, it’s important to understand your rights and to stay silent until you have a DUI defense attorney present.”

Last year, law enforcement officials told 3TV, “more people were drinking and driving home from ball games than any other time in recent memory – with many offenders being from out of state,” an important wake up call to out-of-state residents who need to understand the seriousness of driving under the influence in Arizona.

“With so many out-of-state residents traveling to Arizona to follow their favorite baseball team, it’s important for them to know they’re not exempt from our tough DUI laws,” Corso said.

In Arizona, the penalties for drinking and driving are serious and can result in a mandatory jail sentence of 24 hours to 10 days. Along with jail time, offenders may be potentially required to undergo alcohol education, equip their vehicle with a certified ignition interlock device and be ordered to perform community service.

“During this fun time, we want to remind fans to stay safe and be responsible,” Corso said, “However, if for some reason you find yourself in legal trouble, remember that Corso Law Group is here to defend your rights and help to ensure your civil liberties aren’t violated.”

Corso Law Group is an experienced team of legal professionals who have handled thousands of Arizona DUI cases. Founder Christopher Corso is a former Maricopa County prosecutor who can help with drunk driving cases as well as other criminal defense needs such as criminal speeding, CDL tickets, photo radar tickets, felony charges, drug possession, weapons possession, violent crimes and more.

Free consultations are available with Corso Law Group by visiting https://www.corsolawgroup.com or calling (480) 471-4616.

Corso Law Group, PLLC Arizona offices are located at 8655 E. Via De Ventura, Suite F-165 in Scottsdale, Arizona 85258. The firm’s Texas offices are located at 5177 Richmond Ave., Suite 1250 in Houston, Texas 77056.

Scottsdale DUI Attorneys at Corso Law Group Expect a DUI Crackdown for the 2016 Waste Management Phoenix Open

Golf fans at the 2016 Waste Management Phoenix Open will be under intense police scrutiny with strict DUI enforcement, Valley-wide DUI task forces and a special DUI campaign all creating the potential for increased arrests, according to Scottsdale DUI attorney Christopher Corso.

Corso, founder of Corso Law Group, says police activity and DUI checkpoints will saturate TPC Scottsdale and the surrounding area. In recent years, officers have been positioned at points of entry to the Phoenix Open to intercept visibly intoxicated guests, offer Breathalyzer tests as part of the “Know Your Limit Campaign” and look out for any additional violations.

“Law enforcement is well aware that crowds of people will be drinking all day and are prepared to act on any criminal activity they come across, especially drunk driving,” Corso said. “As criminal defense lawyers, we’re here to defend your rights and to make sure the police don’t violate your civil liberties.”

Golf fans will be dealing with more than just Scottsdale police officers during the tournament.

The tournament draws thousands of attendees every year – in 2015, a record-breaking 564,368 people attended the open – leading police departments from Mesa, Phoenix, Scottsdale, Gilbert and Tempe to work together to crack down on drunk driving throughout the state.

A majority of arrests at the Phoenix Open are typically alcohol related, and 646 of 1,856 people who participated in breath tests during one day of the event in 2015 blew over the legal limit,  ABC15 reports.

“This is an event people look forward to all year, and it definitely draws a lively crowd,” Corso said. “If things get out of hand, we’re here to defend the rights of anyone who ends up in a tough legal position.”

Corso Law Group is an experienced team of legal professionals who have handled thousands of Arizona DUI cases. Founder Christopher Corso is a former Maricopa County prosecutor who can help with drunk driving cases as well as other criminal defense needs such as criminal speeding, CDL tickets, photo radar tickets, felony charges, drug possession, weapons possession, violent crimes and more.

Free consultations are available with Corso Law Group by calling (480) 471-4616.

Corso Law Group, PLLC is located at 14500 N. Northsight Blvd., Suite 116 in Scottsdale, Arizona, 85260.

College Football National Championship Game Brings Crime to Phoenix According to Criminal Defense Attorneys at Corso Law Group

Thousands of football fans will flood the Valley for the College Football National Championship in Glendale, Ariz. on Jan. 11., leading to increased crime and police presence on game day, according to criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor Christopher Corso, founder of Corso Law Group.

Approximately 72,000 fans are expected to attend the championship game in Glendale, and 20,000 more will be watching from surrounding bars and restaurants in Westgate, The Arizona Republic reports.

While this spike in visitors is great for the local economy and tourism, large crowds, parties and alcohol consumption bring crime to hosting cities. In some instances where games resulted in upset, crimes such as assault increased by 112 percent, according to a study examining the connection between college football games and crime.

“Large crowds can bring about security and safety issues. With so many people concentrated in one area, large-scale events like college football games become targets for accidents and criminal activity,” Corso said.

Police in Glendale, downtown Phoenix, where additional events will take place, and across the Valley know this to be true and aren’t taking any chances.

Officials in Glendale are planning to implement extensive security for the national championship game, which will take place at University of Phoenix Stadium. In Phoenix, the director of Homeland Security and Emergency Management for the city said thousands of law enforcement and fire officials will be working the event, including 300 to 400 at the command post, KTAR News reports.

“Police will be on high-alert for any violation of the law, whether it’s assault, drunk driving or theft,” Corso said. “Arizona is becoming a destination for national events, and officials are doing whatever it takes to keep it that way.”

Corso Law Group is an experienced team of legal professionals who have handled thousands of Arizona DUI cases. Founder Christopher Corso is a former Maricopa County prosecutor who can help with drunk driving cases as well as other criminal defense needs such as criminal speeding, CDL tickets, photo radar tickets, felony charges, drug possession, weapons possession, violent crimes and more.

Free consultations are available with Corso Law Group by visiting https://corsolawgroup.com or calling (480) 471-4616.

Corso Law Group, PLLC is located at 14500 N. Northsight Blvd., Suite 116 in Scottsdale, Arizona, 85260.

Scottsdale DUI Attorneys Warn of Heightened DUI Patrols on New Year’s Eve

Phoenix – Veteran Scottsdale DUI attorney and founder of Corso Law Group, Christopher Corso, says Valley residents will be under extra scrutiny during Arizona’s DUI crackdown this New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Police are increasing saturation patrols in Phoenix, the East Valley and the West Valley throughout the holiday weekend and New Year’s Day, according to a statement by the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety.

The program is tasked with lowering the number of intoxicated drivers on the road with patrols and traffic stops that resulted in 14,079 sober, designated drivers contacted to escort impaired drivers home in 2014.

Corso says Valley residents can expect to see DUI patrols and stops in the days leading up to New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

“Law enforcement officials are well aware that New Year’s Eve ranks as one of the deadliest holidays, and they’re taking action,” Corso said. “Police will be on high-alert for drunk drivers and won’t hesitate to give out citations or make arrests for traffic violations.”

In recent years, Arizona officials have steadily increased their numbers during New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, sending a message to the public that drunk driving will not be tolerated during the holidays, when approximately 42 percent of traffic fatalities are related to drinking and driving, according to the National Safety Council.

Roads are particularly dangerous after midnight toasts and during the early hours of New Year’s Day, the day of the year with the highest percent of alcohol-related deaths. On New Year’s Day, the percentage of deaths involving a car accident increases by 51 percent.

“If New Year’s Eve festivities end in legal trouble, Valley residents can count on Corso Law Group to provide the defense they need,” Corso said.

Corso Law Group is an experienced team of legal professionals who have handled thousands of Arizona DUI cases. Founder Christopher Corso is a former Maricopa County prosecutor who can help with drunk driving cases as well as other criminal defense needs such as criminal speeding, CDL tickets, photo radar tickets, felony charges, drug possession, weapons possession, violent crimes and more.

Free consultations are available with Corso Law Group by visiting https://corsolawgroup.com or calling (480) 471-4616.

Corso Law Group, PLLC is located at 14500 N. Northsight Blvd., Suite 116 in Scottsdale, Arizona, 85260.

Christopher Corso Featured in US Daily Review for “Watch Out for Blackout Wednesday” Interview

Arizona DUI lawyer Christopher Corso discussed “Blackout Wednesday”, the evening before Thanksgiving day, and the shocking drunk driving statistics which accompany the holiday with Price of Business host, Kevin Price.

According to U.S. Department of Transportation, approximately 91 percent of travel will take place by personal vehicle over Thanksgiving, one reason why “Blackout Wednesday”, or commonly referred to as “Drinksgiving”, is a very dangerous time to drive. According to MADD, 40 percent of highway deaths in the U.S. are caused by alcohol-related crashes over the Thanksgiving holiday, starting on “Blackout Wednesday”.

Drivers should also be aware of being ticketed for other traffic violations.

“Travel contributes to Thanksgiving being one of the deadliest holidays of the year,” Corso said. “Nationwide, these numbers are also similar but out West, especially states with No-Refusal, that’s where you’re going to see an increase in DUIs. You just need to remember to be safe out there.”

Listen to the full interview here:  http://bit.ly/1XIcgjM.

With more than 50 years of criminal defense experience, Corso Law Group is an experienced team of legal professionals who have handled thousands of Arizona DUI cases. Founder Christopher Corso is a former Maricopa County prosecutor who can help with drunk driving cases as well as other criminal defense needs such as criminal speeding, CDL tickets, photo radar tickets, felony charges, drug possession, weapons possession, violent crimes and more.

To schedule a free consultation with Corso Law Group, please call (480) 471-4616.

Truck Drivers Salaries Increase During Shortage

Time and time again, we have worked with truck drivers to secure their livelihoods after legal difficulties, learning that their salaries either proved unfair or challenging to live on. Now, after a change in economic conditions and an increase in the shortage of truck drivers, companies are beginning to seek their services at a higher paid and more frequent rate.

This year, the truck driving industry has experienced a continued shortage of drivers throughout the United States, causing salaries of current drivers to increase by approximately 12 percent.

According to the National Transportation Institute, average salaries for long-haul truck drivers have increased approximately 17 percent since 2013, rising to $57,000 in 2015. Due to low employment costs and an increase in demand for imported goods that must be transported by long-haul trucks, the trucking industry has seen great benefits. According to Bob Costello, American Trucking Association’s Chief Economist, the expected increase in driver’s salaries will continue to rise as long as the shortage continues.

An increase in salaries is long overdue, but long-haul truck driving still proves an impossible task for some due to the commitment of time spent out on the road.

Jarrod Ritter, a 35-year-old truck driver, tried long-haul truck driving a few times but was never able to commit to the long hours and multiple days away from home. In a Wall Street Journal article which discussed the raise in truck driver’s salaries he stated, “It’s a hard life…You’re living 24 hours a day, seven days a week inside a rolling closet.”

Offering more time at home is one of the changes the American Trucking Association is considering in order to attract more drivers to fix the shortage. Although a steep increase in salaries is intriguing for drivers, this factor, as well as a change in how the supply chain treats the drivers and improving the reputation of the industry, are said to be in the works.

Additional changes in the industry also include lowering the age requirement for interstate truck drivers and working to hire veterans.

Another challenge for truck drivers includes specific legal difficulties. Texas CDL tickets can result in serious penalties for truck drivers and are difficult to fight without the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney.

That’s why our firm is here to help. We work with these individuals every day to help them succeed and grow in their positions by fighting for their rights.

We understand that truck drivers must maintain a clean driving record to continue making a living. To learn how to protect yourself, please contact us today.

Arizona REAL ID Update

With 2016 just a few weeks away, Arizona identification cards and driver’s licenses are undergoing big changes to meet Federal REAL ID standards, and those that don’t will become much less usable.

Some of the newest and most important updates have to do with license photos.

Due to a new facial recognition software, ID photos must comply with a new facial recognition software that requires clear, high quality photos.

Those who wear eyeglasses everyday will need to go in for an updated, lens-free photo as the new software will not allow facial features to be covered in ID photos. Facial hair and religious items, like hijabs, are still allowed as long as they are worn daily and don’t cover up the eyes, nose or mouth.

This new facial-recognition system will examine photos of those applying for driver’s licenses and ID cards at Motor Vehicle Division offices and alert workers if one of the new photos matches with a photo that already exists in the database. Additionally, Arizonans will now need to get a new license photo every eight years.

This is intended to notify officials if multiple names are being used for one photo, for example, to help detect fraud, identity theft, and more. However, some believe that the new software could be violation of privacy.

The American Civil Liberties Union supports getting rid of the REAL ID, arguing that the new licenses are a “tremendously destructive impact on privacy,” The Phoenix New Times reports.

Although older Arizona licenses with existing ID photos will still be valid forms of identification in several cases, such as for voting, they will not be accepted forms of ID for traveling, even domestically. Those without a REAL ID will need to use a passport or other form of ID to get through airport security. The date for when this transition will take place has yet to be announced.

REAL-IDs are predicted to be available in Arizona in April.

Spooky Crime: Does Criminal Activity Increase on Halloween?

Ghoulish behavior, scary costumes and plenty of tricks are a given on Halloween, but should you expect an increase in criminal activity on October 31? If you live in Tempe, Arizona, you might.

Based on a look at crime rates on Halloween in 10 different cities across the U.S., including Tempe, these are the determining factors for Halloween crime rates:

  • Day of the week Halloween falls on. If Halloween occurs over the weekend, parties and other activities could contribute to an increase in crimes on that specific day.
  • Common crimes specific to the city at hand.
  • Any crime prevention programs in place by the city.
  • Whether the city is a college town. University-age students are likely to celebrate Halloween with drinking and partying, which could lead to increased criminal activity.
  • Whether any Halloween activities are available for kids and teens. If structured Halloween activities are available, this could reduce the chance of kids and teens getting into legal trouble with pranks, like toilet papering a house, which could be considered vandalism.

In Tempe, theft, vandalism and simple assault top the charts for Halloween crimes, followed by alcohol-related incidents. With Tempe being home to Arizona State University, the largest public university in the U.S., parties and heavy traffic in popular entertainment areas like Mill Avenue make incidents such as DUI and assault fairly common, especially during holidays and special events like Halloween.

Of course, whether criminal activity spikes on Halloween in Arizona depends on a variety of environmental factors. And while these specific crimes are at the top of the list to look out for on Halloween in Tempe, it’s important to look at these results with an analytical eye.

Tempe’s crime rates fluctuate due to a drastic change in population during the workday, which increases by 46 percent each day thanks to high numbers of people from all over the Valley commuting to ASU as well as Tempe’s many employment hubs. Tempe was ranked eighth most dangerous suburb in America in a 2014 crime-rate compilation by real estate company Movoto LLC, however, this does not necessarily mean that Tempe is a dangerous city.

Crime rates are determined by dividing the number of crimes reported by the city’s residential population, which means that Tempe’s inflated daytime population could skew its data, resulting in misleading crime rates. This same issue is also true for any special event or holiday that generates a crowd or celebration, like Halloween.

So, should Arizona residents be worried about an increase in crimes on Halloween? Not necessarily. Just be aware that there’s always a risk of criminal behaviour when crowds and parties are involved. Otherwise, following the same safety precautions practiced on an everyday basis, like locking up and keeping a close eye on kids, should do the trick.