"Pulled over" while walking down the sidewalk - ticketed

Fizscy
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"Pulled over" while walking down the sidewalk - ticketed

by: Fizscy on
Thu Oct 18, 2012 3:08 pm

Hello everyone,

I've searched through the forums before registering and posting this, and although I found a couple similar situations, nothing really fit the bill here. On the labour day weekend I was driving into the village near my cottage. I dropped my wallet as I drove, and so at a stop sign approaching my destination I unbuckled and grabbed the wallet. Since I was so close, I didn't rebuckle. Around the corner an OPP officer was watching traffic pass by, standing outside their vehicle. I passed, and saw in my mirror as he got in his vehicle. I pulled to the side into a parking spot, exited my vehicle, locked the door, and proceeded to walk towards the store I had come to town to go to. As I walked about 10 feet away, I heard a honk behind me. I kept walking, but then I heard a "stop, police."

I was requested to show my documentation, and I replied "I'm not in care and control of this vehicle and therefore do not have an obligation to produce these documents, only my own identification." The officer replied "If you do not I will arrest you for obstruction of justice". At that point I complied. I had recently reinstated insurance on my vehicle since I hadn't been driving all summer and so I still had temp slips. The 30 day slip I had expired two days earlier and I forgot to print out the newer one I had received (I do have this now, showing the 30 day coverage including the day I was pulled over, however, because of what follows I cancelled my insurance and never received a pink slip).

The officer went to his car and checked things, then returned to inform me that I had been suspended for several months for unpaid fines. I was issued a summons for November 13 in Lindsay for both as well as the failure to wear a seatbelt. None had a set fine. I was never sent a notice in the mail informing me of the suspension, but was told since it was so long ago that it was deemed to be served. I assume the seatbelt charge is an absolute liability and that there is no duty on the part of the prosecutor to prove my guilt.

I returned home at the end of the weekend, promptly printed my new temp insurance card, went and paid my fines and reinstatement fee and now have everything back in order. However, these are some big charged against me and so I was wondering if anyone had any advice, or if the fact that I was walking along the sidewalk matters at all (I assume it doesn't). The officer told me that I should get my ducks in a row and bring the documentation with me to court and the charges should be dismissed... However, reading some of the stories on here I am beginning to doubt whether the prosecutors will even hear me out.

Am I doomed to big fines and 6 months of not driving? I need my vehicle to get to school and work.


tdottopcop
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by: tdottopcop on
Fri Oct 19, 2012 3:35 am

"
I was requested to show my documentation, and I replied "I'm not in care and control of this vehicle and therefore do not have an obligation to produce these documents, only my own identification."

So, how'd that work out for you?
No, I am not the chief of Toronto Police.
No, I do not work for Toronto Police...
... it is just a name folks :)


Fizscy
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by: Fizscy on
Fri Oct 19, 2012 9:17 am

Looking back I should have held out my arms and said "Alright. We'll take a 30 minute drive to Lindsay and you can explain to your supervisor how you tried to pull over a pedestrian for a traffic stop". I mean... what if I had locked my keys in the car? His dash camera wouldn't have even shown me in the vehicle and he'd have no proof that it's mine or that I was driving.

I know that the law in Ontario only requires you to show drivers licence, ownership and proof of insurance coverage when you are in the control of a vehicle. If you are walking down the street, you need only give your name (ask if you are under arrest, if not then the police have no right to even question you and you may politely walk away). Obviously if I wasn't worried about my car being towed, I would have just kept on walking and let the officer bellow his lungs out. What is he going to do? Charge me with vagrancy?

I'm a law abiding citizen, not a common crook. I won't hand my liberties over to what may be a fresh-out-of training gym rat with no discretion or sympathy if I can.


Stanton
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by: Stanton on
Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:15 am

By your own admission the officer had just observed you driving without your seatbelt. The fact that you had parked and exited your vehicle prior to actually being stopped does not free you of your legal obligations as a motorist. There’s lots of case law surrounding the doctrine of “fresh pursuit”, which covers scenarios such as yours and police’s authority to detain.

In terms of the officer actually arresting you, I would agree that as long as you had properly identified yourself, the officer would have had no such authority. Failing to surrender your ownership and insurance in my opinion are not grounds for obstruction of justice. The officer could have simply charged you with failing to provide those documents under the Highway Traffic Act.

In terms of your charges, I think you’re just going to have to wait until your first appearance and see what the Crown’s willing to offer. What if any type of plea deal is offered really seems to vary from one jurisdiction to the next.




OPS Copper
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by: OPS Copper on
Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:07 pm

Looking back I should have held out my arms and said "Alright. We'll take a 30 minute drive to Lindsay and you can explain to your supervisor how you tried to pull over a pedestrian for a traffic stop". I mean... what if I had locked my keys in the car? His dash camera wouldn't have even shown me in the vehicle and he'd have no proof that it's mine or that I was driving.


Even easier in canada. Pull out the appearance notice or have a NCO release on PTA and undertaking. No need to take you the 30 mins to jail where you can be charged and released at the scene.

OPS


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