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Ontario Highway Traffic Act

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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2015 3:09 pm 
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canuckavelli wrote:
Then I will send another one every month until I get disclosure.


There's no need to send it every month. You can send a second request 2-3 months later and leave it at that.


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2015 1:50 am 
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canuckavelli wrote:
If the other driver doesn't come, will it get thrown out as well. I'm 95% sure that he won't. He's a busy guy who travels a lot and didn't think I deserved the ticket.


I wouldn't gamble on that one, but if he doesn't show up there's about a reasonable (but not certain) chance it will be dropped. I witnessed a collision about two years ago (Leslie & McNicoll in Toronto) where a driver of a Grand Am stopped at a red, then proceeded through and crunched into a northbound Kia. Long story short, I was subpoenaed to the trial. The consequences for not showing up can be pretty serious. I'm not sure how much the Prosecutor's office or the JPs go after witnesses who fail to attend, but they did give me plenty of notice so I really didn't have much of an excuse to not show up. (If I couldn't show up I would've notified the Prosecutor anyway.) So you should expect the other guy to be there.

If he does show up, my advice would be to plead it down to "fail to turn left to avoid collision" or "following too closely."

In the case I was involved in, both the Prosecutor and JP were very interested in whether the driver of the Kia was injured in the collision. She was (whiplash), so although the Prosecutor did agree with the Grand Am's driver to resolve it where the driver pled guilty to "red light - proceed before green" in exchange for dropping "fail to surrender license" and "fail to surrender insurance," the JP slapped her with a $600 fine. Since the other driver was not injured in your case (doesn't sound like it anyway), your odds of getting a deal are a bit better.

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* The above is NOT legal advice. By acting on anything I have said, you assume responsibility for any outcome and consequences. *
http://www.OntarioTicket.com OR http://www.OHTA.ca


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Fri Mar 20, 2015 7:27 pm 
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A few weeks ago I mailed Disclosure Request:

"General Request
With regard to the above matter and in light of the guidelines set out in R. v. Stinchcombe, 1991 CANLII 45 (S.C.C.), and subsequent cases, I am requesting that you provide me with all relevant information and documentation so that I may prepare my defence against the above charge and make full answer.

Specific Request
Without limiting the generality of the above request, I ask that you also include:

o a full copy of the police officer’s notes;
o a copy of both sides of the officer’s copy of the ticket (Notice of Offence);
o a TYPED version of any hand written notes;
o witness will say statements;
o witness statements;
o any statements made by the defendant;
o copies of the original notes of such statements;
o the names and address, occupation and criminal record of the persons providing such information;
o any audio and visual recordings (including photographs);
o accident report(s), including reconstruction reports pertaining to the subject charge;
o any data that was downloaded off the vehicle(s) involved; and
o a list of qualifications possessed by the officer(s) involved in investigating and laying the above charge (i.e. forensics, fraud investigation, aviation, etc)

Missing Information
I also request that you advise me of any information, which is not being disclosed and an explanation for such non-disclosure."

I received my disclosure in the mail today.

I only got the following:

Photocopied Officer Notes which includes my statement and the other driver's statement. The writing is legible.

Motor Vehicle Collision Report which includes typed damage estimates (which are way off). It says $5000 + $1000 when it was actually $1500 + $600.

I am not pleased that I didn't receive the following:

- typed office notes
- copy of officer's copy of ticket
- witness will say statements (was really looking forward to this)
- occupation and criminal record of witness
- any pictures that will be used
- qualifications possessed by the officer for investigations
- explanation for the non-disclosure

What should I do? Send another request for disclosure asking for the missing items? Or is this as great as its gonna great? With the information I see here, I don't see how it will help me win the case.

Thanks,


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2015 12:14 am 
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I recommend you read this:

http://forums.redflagdeals.com/ask-me-a ... tc-945928/

"send another disclosure request specifically stating what you require. If you have a month or less before your trial begins, then you should focus on submitting an application to stay your trial due to Improper Disclosure."


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2015 12:28 pm 
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pcdunlop wrote:
I recommend you read this:

http://forums.redflagdeals.com/ask-me-a ... tc-945928/

"send another disclosure request specifically stating what you require. If you have a month or less before your trial begins, then you should focus on submitting an application to stay your trial due to Improper Disclosure."



I know the process but will it get me anywhere? What if I am asking for too much?


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2015 12:24 am 
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I'm looking through the disclosure / evidence and there isn't much for me to work with.

Basically it just said damage. Minor damage on other car's bumper. Bent hood and crack front bumper on my care.

For witness statement, it just said that he was driving and was struck by me from behind.

For my statement it says that I was driving, sun was in my eye, and I struck the other vehicle.

Doesn't seem like there's any case for "careless driving" based on this evidence, but how do I fight it? How do I win?


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2015 12:11 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 1:08 pm
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Location: Ontario
You basically admitted to the officer that you were driving carelessly. Continuing to drive while the sun was impeding your vision is tantamount to driving with your eyes closed. You'll be told that you should have used your visor, sunglasses, or slowed down/stopped until conditions improved. All other things being equal the only way to beat this is if the witness does not show up. You will likely be offered a plea bargain to a lesser charge.

In the future: carefully consider any statement you make to a police officer.


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2015 2:17 pm 
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canuckavelli wrote:
Doesn't seem like there's any case for "careless driving" based on this evidence, but how do I fight it?


I totally disagree. The case is fully made out for careless driving: You hit another vehicle, because (by your own admission) you kept driving forward without being able to fully see the road. They don't need a gigantic pile of evidence to convict for careless, all they need is to prove beyond a reasonable doubt (not 100% shadow of a doubt) that your driving was a "departure from the standard of care of a reasonable and prudent driver." If you can't see, it isn't reasonable and prudent to keep moving forward at a normal driving speed. Although you slowed down, it was too late. If I genuinely thought there was a way to fight the charge, I'd advise you accordingly, but I don't think that's true here.

Your only real opportunity to "win" is if the witness doesn't show up. You may luck out and get an extraordinarily sympathetic JP, but that would be extremely unlikely. My advice, again, is to seek a plea bargain to a lesser offence. If you don't, you'll probably get convicted of Careless Driving, which means your insurance company could very well terminate your coverage. You didn't state that the other driver was being erratic, cut you off or pulled out in front of you, so that's not a defence.

I also think they gave you appropriate disclosure. They only have to give you relevant evidence that they intend to introduce. If you file for a stay based on improper disclosure, you'll have to appear before the JP to argue as to why each and every item you didn't receive was necessary for you to make a full answer and defence. The notes and MVA Report are more than reasonable, as was asking for pictures. However, there might not be any pictures. Just for future reference, cutting and pasting a laundry list from ticketcombat.com is not a good way to go about requesting disclosure. If you start asking for a whole bunch of irrelevant stuff, it doesn't make your disclosure request look reasonable. In fact, to most JPs, it just makes it look like you're trying to screw with the system, which makes it harder to argue "improper disclosure," even if there were items you were reasonably entitled to get that you didn't.

To address each item you didn't receive, aside from pictures:

Quote:
- typed office notes


The notes you received are legible, by your own admission. It is not reasonable to ask for typed notes in that case. It would be the same information.

Quote:
- copy of officer's copy of ticket


That's the same as what you got. Some of them have spaces for notes on the back of them - but you would have received that as part of the disclosure package anyway.

Quote:
- witness will say statements (was really looking forward to this)


That's what the notes are. The other driver will show up and testify he was driving and got hit from behind, which is reflected in the notes. That's it. In cases like this, they do not provide will-say statements, nor are they obligated to.

Quote:
- occupation and criminal record of witness


You have got to be kidding me. How does the other driver's occupation help you prove you weren't driving carelessly? Or the criminal record? You won't get it anyway. The occupation is protected by privacy legislation and the witness' criminal record is not subject to disclosure either. He isn't the one on trial and he's not accused of an offence. You're approaching "breach of privacy" with that.

Quote:
- qualifications possessed by the officer for investigations


The fact that he's a sworn police officer in Ontario is sufficient to qualify him to investigate this. He doesn't need to be a collision reconstructionist, nor does he need extensive training in investigations, the Highway Traffic Act, or collisions beyond what he received at OPC. You can ask him about his training on investigations in court, but that's likely to be a dead end.

Quote:
- explanation for the non-disclosure


They don't have to provide an explanation. They can, but it is not essential to your defence.

_________________
* The above is NOT legal advice. By acting on anything I have said, you assume responsibility for any outcome and consequences. *
http://www.OntarioTicket.com OR http://www.OHTA.ca


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2015 2:47 pm 
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Thanks for your responses.

A couple things:

- After the accident, the other driver said to me that he stopped fast because of the sun and sorta apologized.
- I told the cop that I slowed down as soon as the sun impaired my vision and I slammed on brakes as soon as I saw the car but it was too late

I guess the above doesn't matter though as its not in the officer's notes.

I have no problem taking a plea bargain and I will do so if both the cop and witness are there. But what if the cop shows up last minute after I miss my chance to take the plea deal?

If the witness doesn't show up, how does it work? Does it still get thrown out immediately or do I still have to present a case, etc?


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2015 5:47 pm 
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canuckavelli wrote:
Thanks for your responses.

A couple things:

- After the accident, the other driver said to me that he stopped fast because of the sun and sorta apologized.
- I told the cop that I slowed down as soon as the sun impaired my vision and I slammed on brakes as soon as I saw the car but it was too late

I guess the above doesn't matter though as its not in the officer's notes.

I have no problem taking a plea bargain and I will do so if both the cop and witness are there. But what if the cop shows up last minute after I miss my chance to take the plea deal?

If the witness doesn't show up, how does it work? Does it still get thrown out immediately or do I still have to present a case, etc?


I was charged with the same ticket and asked in another post - the officer is not required to be there, only the witness (other driver). In my case I reversed in my driveway and there was a car right behind the huge snowbanks. I couldn't see it and I proceeded to the road and the car hit me. I didn't provide much information in my accident report and I will ask for the disclosure as soon as I receive the notice of trial. Once I have the disclosure I will then seek for professional help to see what are my chances to beat this ticket.


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2015 2:41 pm 
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canuckavelli wrote:
Thanks for your responses.

A couple things:

- After the accident, the other driver said to me that he stopped fast because of the sun and sorta apologized.
- I told the cop that I slowed down as soon as the sun impaired my vision and I slammed on brakes as soon as I saw the car but it was too late

I guess the above doesn't matter though as its not in the officer's notes.

I have no problem taking a plea bargain and I will do so if both the cop and witness are there. But what if the cop shows up last minute after I miss my chance to take the plea deal?

If the witness doesn't show up, how does it work? Does it still get thrown out immediately or do I still have to present a case, etc?



anyone?


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2015 4:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 1:44 am
Posts: 1062
canuckavelli wrote:
- After the accident, the other driver said to me that he stopped fast because of the sun and sorta apologized.
- I told the cop that I slowed down as soon as the sun impaired my vision and I slammed on brakes as soon as I saw the car but it was too late

I guess the above doesn't matter though as its not in the officer's notes.


The driver in front of you is allowed to adjust his driving based on conditions and hazards. It'll be your job to keep a safe distance behind the vehicle in front of you in case a situation arises. You're afforded the same luxury. If you're present the argument "I was blinded by the light", they are going to say anyone who is driving blind should probably stop instead of casually slowing down.

canuckavelli wrote:
I have no problem taking a plea bargain and I will do so if both the cop and witness are there. But what if the cop shows up last minute after I miss my chance to take the plea deal?


The officer may not be in the room at that moment. You are not going to be the only one in the court room. Around the GTA it's not uncommon to see 10-30 people booked the same trial time. There's a lot of cases being dealt with before an actual trial takes places. There's a ton of buffer room for an officer to show up for trial. Most likely he'll still be in the same building. Most likely they wont tell you either.

Careless Driving is no joke. In most cases any plea deal is going to be way better than taking that risk.


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2015 2:23 pm 
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Thanks for all the help. I had my trial today and I figured I'd give a run down of what happened.

Walked into courtroom. Saw the cop walk in. Didn't see witness anywhere. Went to talk to the prosecutor. He said he will drop the charges if his witness doesn't show. If the witness does show, then he will offer me "failing to stop [...]" can't exactly remember. 0 demerit points and $85. I agreed and thanked him.

Watched all the other trials take place, while keeping an eye at the door to see if the witness would show. Finally I went up, the prosecutor called for the witness. No show. Justice of Peace told me that the charges are withdrawn, and I can leave.

Very happy with the outcome and as stupid as it sounds, this was a great experience. Learning about the laws, trial strategies, disclosure, trial procedures, etc.


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Re: After accident, the police gave me a Careless Driving ti
PostPosted: Thu Jun 18, 2015 3:36 pm 
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Posts: 1722
Congratulations!

You never know what kind of prosecutor you will get... you got the good kind that actually told you up front that they will drop the charge if the witness does not show up.

Some prosecutors will unfortunately not be honest and upfront with you about the situation... they will use intimidation to try and get you to plead guilty even though their witness may not show up. For example some may say "plead guilty with failing to stop or we will be charging you with careless when trial starts", and they will not mention the fact that their witness is not present.

Anyways good job on exercising your right to a fair trial and to be innocent until proven guilty!

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+++ This is not legal advice, only my opinion +++


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