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Need help with Careless Driving charge
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 8:51 pm 
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Hi All,

Looking for some advice and possible council/representation on a careless driving ticket I received. Here is the timeline so far

19/20 Dec 2010 - Around 11pm driving home from a friends, I lost control of my vehicle going around a corner on an unfamiliar country road and slid into the ditch. Car spun around 180° and was caught in the ditch (later found out it was a write off). Tow truck was called, who subsequently called police. Police arrived just after midnight, and told me he could tell I had been drinking (smell of alcohol, etc). Gave me a ticket for careless

2 Jan 2011 - went to Hamilton courthouse and entered my intent to plead "not guilty"

20 Jan 2011 - Notice of Trail received for date of 08 June 2011

08 Jun 2011 - Went to trial on my own, prosecutor offer a lesser charge with only 2 demerit points (failure to remain in designated lane, or something like that). I stated I wanted to review the disclosure before making any decisions. Prosecution said they were ready to deal with the charge right away and why hadn't I filed for disclosure sooner? I mentioned that I was acting on the advice given to me by the duty office (when I phoned to ask they told me to wait until my court date to request the disclosure). Date for trail was set for 26 Oct 2011.

10 Jun 2011 - faxed in request for disclosure

19 Jul 2011 - received disclosure

19 Aug 2011 - received officer's notes

05 Oct 2011 - received notice that the City of Hamilton needed to apply for an adjournment of my 26 Oct trail date, and that the application would be made 14 Oct 2011. I was not available to attend to this hearing, but later phone to find out my court date had been adjoined to 24 June 2012.

I am looking for my best course of action. I see two options - 1. Settle on the lesser charge offered (but will it still be an option at this point!?), 2. Try for getting the charge stayed based on unreasonable delay (what are my chances? Would it be safer to try for the lesser charge? If found guilty of careless it would affect my insurance far more than the other charge proposed)

Any advice would be greatly appreciated
Thanks,
JK


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Re: Need help with Careless Driving charge
PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 8:53 pm 
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sorry, small correction - my next court date is on 6 June 2012

Thanks

JK


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Re: Need help with Careless Driving charge
PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:11 am 
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I think you can file 11B to stay the trial.


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Re: Need help with Careless Driving charge
PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 1:16 am 
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Just remember that 11(b) calculations and arguments are not straight forward or simple. For example, you have to consider what period of time the JP will assign as intake or neutral time, which doesn't count for 11(b). Then you also have to be prepared to argue the prejudice incurred by the delay, which is a huge factor in a successful 11(b). Prejudice can either be inferred or actual.

If what I'm saying doesn't make perfect sense, you may want to consider hiring a lawyer or paralegal for the limited purpose of preparing a filing an 11(b) for you. You can do it yourself, people on here have, but if it doesn't go smoothly, you may lose what could have been a successful 11(b). Just something to consider.

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NOTHING I SAY ON HERE IS LEGAL ADVICE.


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Re: Need help with Careless Driving charge
PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 6:46 pm 
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Thanks to both of you for the replies above. I would definitely hire a professional if I were to go the route of the 11b, but it seems to me a bit of a gamble given Simon's response.
If I were to 'lose', I would quite likely be stuck with the original charge of carless, wouldn' I?
What are the chance they will still offere the original plea bargain?

Thanks

JK


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Re: Need help with Careless Driving charge
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:14 am 
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Likelihood depends on the prosecutor, but ask yourself why they would want to plea bargain with you when you've just made them fight an 11(b) motion?

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NOTHING I SAY ON HERE IS LEGAL ADVICE.


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Re: Need help with Careless Driving charge
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:25 pm 
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I agree, why would they? I guess I am weighing the likelihood of them accepting the original plea bargain now, or taking the chance of a successful 11(b) challenge (keeling in consideration the associated consequences of each). Any advice there?
Thanks


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