Would like your take on an unusual circumstance that happened to me two days ago. Please read....
My personal vehicle was in the shop for recall work. It was delayed and the dealership offered me a "loaner" car for the evening. It has permanent Ontario plates and new car sticker in the back rear window. That evening I went to my local bar/pool hall after refereeing indoor soccer. I sustained a foot injury. I had a cup of coffee...absolutely no alcohol. I left around 8:45 pm and noted an opp cruiser at the intersection. As I walked down the street, the cruiser followed behind. I got into my car. The cruiser pulled into a parking spot ahead. I drove out on the street and an officer exited the passenger side and pointed me to an open parking spot. I pulled over, stopped, parked and turned the ignition off.
Another officer got out of the drivers side. They went to the rear of my vehicle and I began to run the plates. The first officer approached my side and asked for my license. He states the reason they stopped me was because "I was walking funny" and asked if I had anything to drink. I denied and stated I only had a cup of coffee. So he asked again "why I was walking funny", to which I explained my foot injury. I voluntarily explained the reason I had the dealer car. The officer asked for my ownership and insurance. I had trouble finding the light to see inside. I looked in the glovebox, console....could not find it. I again reiterated that it was a loaner and I didn't know where it would be. Both officers returned to their car. I began searching for anything. I found the ownership in a plastic bag in the upper portion of the glovebox. I shouted to the cops I had the ownership and brought it over to them. The officer told me to get back in my car. Eventually I was hit with a "failure to surrender insurance card". The next morning I went to the dealership and told them about my ordeal. The service advisor found the insurance under the seat. I took the insurance to the detachment with my ticket but they weren't interested and told me it was now a court matter because the officer didnt put on the ticket I had a grace period to bring it in. So here I am. Option 3. Not guilty option to go to trial. I got the dealership to write me a dated and signed letter stating the vehicle was insured and it was misplaced under the seat and I was indeed loaned the vehicle. So I've photocopied everything - ticket, ownership, insurance, my recieot showing my personal vehicle in the shop the days in question, the letter and Written a statement of the events so it's fresh in my memory.
Side note - cop is 2 days on the road. The driver cop was his coach officer. From another officer I know
Charge - compulsory insurance act s. 31(1). "Failure to surrender insurance card" - $65
Few questions.....1) how likely am I to get this offence withdrawn?
2) should I get any other evidence or perhaps subpoena the service advisor?
3) if I get the chance should I challenge the "walking funny" reason - against the charter of rights and freedoms. (Cops don't pull people over because they have prosthetic legs). Was there a legitimate reason for the stop?
4) when the claims of DUI were unsubstantiated, did the officer require my documents as no laws were suspected to be broken?
5) I will file for disclosure to see the notes. Will there be notes from both officers? And if the coach one doesn't submit, is that grounds for a mistrial?
6) anyone know if this affects insurance, as a minor conviction. I have a completely clean driving record (til now)
Anything you can add would be greatly appreciated.
I spoke to a paralegal and he thinks there's some substance but wants $500 with no guarantees. I think this would be more if I lost this challenge. I have a completely clean driving record.
2) You should get disclosure from the prosecution. I don't see how subpoenaing anyone will help your case.
3) Police can pull over anyone at any time to make sure documents are in order and they will likely cite that as the reason for the stop. You weren't charged with impaired driving.
4) They will always check your documents when you are pulled over for any reason. I was once pulled over because an officer thought the cigar I was smoking was a marijuana cigarette; still had to give my documents. Being pulled over for another reason does not absolve you from requiring proper documentation.
5) There should be notes from the officer that gave you the ticket. He will be the only one that has to testify, as he collected all of the evidence needed to convict you (basically just identifying you).
6) Absolutely your insurance will take this opportunity to raise your premiums (unless you get one forgiven in which case you have 3 years without that buffer).
Documentation charges suck, and they suck even more because they can affect your insurance premiums. When getting behind the wheel of a vehicle that isn't yours, always check for these documents to prevent these kind of tickets.
What if the car wasn't insured at all? You wouldn't know and then would be facing a $5000 fine.
This charge isn't like speeding where the crown has to prove that you committed the offence. The onus will be on you to prove that you surrendered the insurance card to the police officer. IMO the only way you can win is if the officer doesn't show up to trial.
SOME police officers are nice and will allow you to come to the accident reporting center and/or police station up to a certain time afterwards with the insurance card and then they will not file the ticket. But if you were not advised of this then it probably isn't the case.
I answered in the other thread here:
+++ This is not legal advice, only my opinion +++