I have been charged with speeding 110 km/hr in 80 km/hr zone just outside of Bancroft, On. Since I was unsure how fast I was travelling (focused on driving because my wiper system was leaving streaks on the windshield even though I had brand new wipers on the car - It was raining that day). I am sure I was speeding but I don't believe I was going that fast and I had just passed a transport truck because of difficulty seeing due to rain and back spray from the transport.
I decided to try the early resolution option as I was troubled by the # of demerit points and the fact that the officer was smirking as he approached my vehicle, which caused me to be concerned. The Prosecutor offered to drop the charge to 105 in 80 km/hr reducing the demerit point by 1. Unsatisfied I decided to fight the charge.
Now, my trial is on Tuesday and I feel lost and confused as to what and how to argue this case. My niece is a Paralegal. She is not fighting on my behalf but advised me to get disclosure. After reading disclosure I was advised to argue "speeding out of necessity" to avoid an accident. After searching for cases to cite and reading some online information about the necessity argument I am unsure if this is a good argument.
There are also a couple of discrepancies in the disclosure:
In the officers notes at the start of his shift (06:00) the weather was recorded at -18c SNOW but on the RADAR Enforcement form Weather Conditions was marked as CLEAR with Road conditions as Snow covered wet, slippery. However, I remember that it was raining. I have researched historical weather channels and have found one that shows that there was precipitation recorded for that date.
Hoping for some ideas and advice. Ticket details listed below.
Ticket date: Feb 12 2016 08:43 am
Everything else appears to be filled out correctly. The officer recorded the location, date and time, my name and address, D/L #, location, offence, contrary to HTA section 128, ticket is signed and amount owing is listed.
Officer was travelling in opposite direction
activated radar (Genesis II Select Directional) approx. 200 meters away
Officer recorded speed Displayed as: 110, 109, 108; Locked speed: 108.
Never lost sight of vehicle
Would make a sense to inquire as to why I was charged with 110 when the radar was locked in at 108? (this is a difference in fee amount and demerit points as 110 puts me in the 30 kms over the speed limit instead of the one lessor).
What I have read about the necessity argument is that it can only be valid if the "Necessity will only apply in this particular case, if the driver, or someone else with the driver is in immediate life-threatening danger" (how to fight an Ontario Speeding ticket; http://proffer.ca).
Other than the weather discrepancy I can't seem to find any fatal flaws.
Thank you in advance for your advice!!
Your niece suggested arguing speeding out of necessity and she's a qualified paralegal ? I would suggest she doesn't like you very much. If you were being chased by someone with a gun or rushing to get someone to hospital who is bleeding out then perhaps but to get past a big rig when it's raining ??? I'm stunned.
The rate of speed that is locked is irrelevant and no speed has to actually be locked at all. If the officer testifies that he saw the figure 110 on the radar unit then that is the speed that will be considered by the judge.
Personally I'd try to head off the prosecutor before court and accept the offer.
Insurance does not care about how many demerit points are associated with the speeding charge. They see anything from 1 over to 49 over as the same thing (minor conviction) and all may cause your rates to go up the same. So getting the charge reduced to even 15 over and 0 demerits will not help you from an insurance point of view.
Defense of necessity pretty much only works if somebody's life was in danger. I highly doubt this will work. If your argument was the spray from the truck, then you should have just backed off instead of passing.
Weather mentioned in notes is irrelevent to a speeding charge.
The speed you are charged with is whatever the highest speed the officer testifies he saw on the radar. Locked speed is irrelevent.
Although I recommend that everybody should do their best to fight every charge, your chances of beating this ticket appear to be slim to none (closer to the none side). If you take it to trial, you will probably lose, and be charged the full 30 over, 4 demerits and a minor conviction on your insurance. If you accept the prosecutors offer you will get 25 over, 3 demerits and a minor conviction on your insurance.
Thank you both, argyll and jsherk1
After my research I was feeling like it was pretty hopeless other than if the officer doesn't show up but then I don't remember what he looks like.
I not concerned about insurance. I'm more concerned about the number of demerit points adding up because I have had a bad streak of luck lately. I already have 3 demerit points on my record, this case makes 4 and about a month later I was in an accident (1st accident ever in 29 years) and charged with careless driving which I believe is another 6 points. that case is still to come.
Careless is a pretty standard charge that I s laid after a collision. It can normally be negotiated to something less heinous. As it is, if you end up with even 3 minor convictions you are going to notice it on your insurance renewal.
How old is the 3 points you already have ?
unfortunately it is recent too. I recently started a job over 1 hour drive away and I bought a used Subaru outback which I seemed to have a lot of issues with. I lost it in the collision.
How recent? Demerit points last 2 years from the date you were charged, not convicted. Then they simply disappear.
Thank you everyone for your advice.
Keep us posted will you....too many people take advice and then never let us know how it turns out.
Sure. My trial is this morning at 9 am.
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