When did speeding become illegal?

Controversial § 315d StGB: When does exceeding the speed count as an illegal street race?

The still comparatively new one Section 315d of the Criminal Code rates the organization and participation illegal street racing as a criminal offense since mid-2017. The problem is whether a significant overspeeding in which only one vehicle is involved is covered by the regulation. This problem - as well as the question of the Constitutionality of the standard - was comprehensively discussed in a decision of the Berlin Chamber of Appeal (decision of December 20, 2019, Az. 161 Ss 134/19).

More and more convictions for illegal street races

Hardly any other standard has been so high since its inception Growth figures to be recorded like § 315d StGB. Specifically, the offense puts three groups of cases under penalty: First, the Organization and implementation of a prohibited street race punished (Section 315d Paragraph 1 No. 1). This includes a so-called cannonball run, in which an attempt is made to cover a certain distance as quickly as possible. Furthermore, the Participation in a street race punished (Section 315d Paragraph 1 No. 2). There must be a race with at least two vehicles Racing character act. That means that the participants have to fight for a top position. Incidentally, you don't even have to know your opponent; you just need to be conscious of the factual awareness of the race.

Controversial variant: Running against yourself is a punishable offense

The last group of cases (Section 315d Paragraph 1 No. 3) relates to so-called "Race against yourself". The motor vehicle must be driven in public space and deal with a inappropriate speed move around. Such an unadjusted speed is usually spoken of when the permissible maximum speed is clearly overridden (e.g. 80-100 km / h in urban areas). In addition, it is required that the driver grossly illegal and additionalinconsiderate behaves. Grossly illegal means that one violates the applicable traffic regulations to a considerable extent. The driver is reckless if, for example, he takes other road users right of way, ignores red traffic lights or endangers pedestrians. Both elements must be implemented at the same time.

Kammergericht makes it clear: Not every speeding is an individual race!

The defendant in the original case served as a food supplier excessive speed drove through downtown Berlin and was finally followed by the police in a civilian vehicle. He ran over several solid lines, passed a tram stop at 55 km / h and carried out Change lanes without using the indicator. The accused was directed against the first instance conviction according to § 315d StGB. He asserted that mere speeding was not a fact and turned the Unconstitutionality of § 315d Abs. 1 Nr. 3 StGB - with partial success. The Berlin Court of Appeal overturned the judgment against him, because mere speeding are just not covered by the criminal liability of the norm. However, the court could nothing that is both illegal and inconsiderate at the same time Recognize the behavior of the accused.

KG Berlin: Gross traffic violation and recklessness must be present at the same time

The Chamber Court also found that the constituent characteristics of gross traffic illegality and recklessness respectively cumulative (i.e. together) must be available. It is therefore not sufficient if the accused "only “grossly illegal and other "Just" inconsiderate commits. In the specific case, neither changing lanes without activating the blinker nor rapidly passing the tram stop or the high speed of up to 89 km / h fulfills both requirements at the same time.