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Careless driving ticket help!!
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 4:47 pm 
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My mother was involved in a car accident and was hit by a truck from the back. It wasnt major and there wasnt alot of damage done to the car. I knew that she was at fault due to an illegal lane change. After being hit, I got out of the car and went to the truck driver. He called the cops and we waited until they showed up. When the cop showed up, he asked who was driving and my mother said it was her. But the cop claimed that the truck driver said I was driving. The truck driver thought I got out of the driver seat when all along, I was sitting behind my mother. The cop claims that the truck driver had a witness who was also on the scene when the accident happened, whom I did not see. I was issued a careless driving ticket from the cop even though I wasnt driving.
I would like to know if the witness counts even though he/she wasnt even there at the scene when the cops came. I think the truck driver just used one of his friends as witnesses.

If I take this case to court, would they consider listening to the "witness" who I didnt even see, and who wasnt even at the scene upon the arrival of the cops?


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Re: Careless driving ticket help!!
PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 4:57 pm 
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Location: Ontario
Regardless of the charge or circumstances, the Justice of the Peace should listen to and weigh the evidence of anyone testifying in Court and determine if they find the witness to be credible and their evidence trustworthy.

If you’re disputing the fact that you were driving, they most likely would need to call the witness to Court to provide their evidence.


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Re: Careless driving ticket help!!
PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 5:08 pm 
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Anybody can be a witness if they actually witnessed something. If you are correct that the person wasn't there, then they shouldn't be able to provide any 1st hand evidence as to what occurred there and 2nd hand evidence would generally be excluded as hearsay. But I suppose may be possible that they were there and you just weren't aware of it. An officer wouldn't likely put someone down as a witness if they weren't there or if they couldn't verify whether they were there.

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Re: Careless driving ticket help!!
PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 5:19 pm 
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I actually didnt see the truck driver talking to anyone because I was standing outside of the car. I wasnt even driving and I was blamed. I know that if I take this case to the court, I wont win because the cop is convinced that the "witness is real". I think the truck driver just gave his friends number and explained the situation. The cops took a long time to come to the scene and I didnt see the truck driver talking to anyone. Everyone was just driving by. I think me getting the careless driving ticket was only because I'm a young student. And the cop didnt think that an older person would make such a mistake while driving.
There was no witness at the scene and the cop said that the truck driver has a witness. I was outside most of the time after the accident waiting for the cops and I didnt see the truck driver talking to anyone.


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Re: Careless driving ticket help!!
PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 5:42 pm 
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What the police officer believes isn't relevant at trial unless he has evidence to support that belief. Careless driving is not a charge I would simply ignore, especially if you weren't driving. If you're mother is willing to testify to the fact she was driving, I think that's very good evidence to the contrary. Your best option is probably to request disclosure and see what the actual evidence is, especially witness statements.


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Re: Careless driving ticket help!!
PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:18 pm 
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As Stanton has stated, requesting the 3rd trial option and disclosure is going to be the first step you should take. Once at trial, you will be presented with the chance to cross-examine the witnesses. Leading questions are allowed, and you can grill them on details regarding the incident.

Considering the circumstance, it might actually be financially viable for you to invest in a good paralegal/lawyer. You'll need someone who will actually fight for you, and not plead to a lesser charge. A good paralegal will be most likely able to destroy a bullshit testimony and have the case thrown out.

Don't give up so easily. I'm sure people here can recommend some good paralegal services.


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Re: Careless driving ticket help!!
PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 9:36 am 
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Get a paralegal with this one. First of all, if your mother testifies that she was driving and not you, and you do the same - that should be it. The officer cannot testify who was driving because he did not witness the infraction and he's not a traffic reconstruction expert. A paralegal or lawyer would rip the truck driver's testimony apart on the stand. Chances are he won't be able to testify clearly. "The truck driver has a witness." Um, okay, let the Prosecutor bring him to court and see how it goes. They also could not turn around and charge your mother at the trial. They'd have to withdraw the charge against you and issue a summons for her - but they can only do that within 6 months of the date of the offence.

This is particularly important to fight. Careless Driving could net you a licence suspension, or 6 demerit points - but that's not the worst of it. Your insurance company may cancel your policy, or double your rates.

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Re: Careless driving ticket help!!
PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 2:28 pm 
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thanks a lot to everyone who responded to my question.


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