I got a ticket for an illegal U-turn.
I met with the prosecutor, but he wouldn't change anything. So, I chose to go to court and I requested disclosure.
I got the police report last week and the dashcam video.
First, the report has typos:
- "NO UTURN SIGN PROPERLY POSTED CLEARLY VISABLE"
- "STOPED W/B RENFORTH DR"
I don't know if those matter, especially the "visAble" one.
Secondly, you don't actually see the U-turn in the video.
The dash cam started from inside a parking lot, perpendicular to the road.
1. You see a car drive in one direction (right to left, until out of frame) - You can't see the licence plate (or the driver)
2. The cop car starts moving, towards the parking lot exit.
3. Then you see a similar car driving in the opposite direction (left to right, until out of frame) - You still can't see the licence plate (or the driver)
4. And then you see the the cop leaving the parking lot and following a car until it stops it - You can't see the licence plate.
5. You see and hear the cop talking to the driver (me) and handing out the ticket. you don't hear me at all.
I'd like to know how I should proceed when I go to court. What if the cop doesn't show up?
I would at the very least, not get the demerit points. Ideally, have the charges dropped altogether.
I don't have any prior offence, in over 5 years of driving in Canada.
The trial's scheduled for next week, but I'm moving the date.
The spelling mistakes wont matter. The notes are to refresh the officers memory. They are not going to trigger some fatal flaw. Example, practically every set of officers notes will contain abbreviations and those are fine. If you need clarification, you can make that request. However, the trial will keep on rolling.
As for the video, consider you're not being charged based on that evidence alone. Most charges wont contain any video. So it's not essential that a video shows the driver, license plate, offense, etc. The officer can provide those details himself.
What happens if the officer doesn't show up though? Could the charges be dropped?
They are paid to show up just like any other part of their job. It's not a normal occurrence for an officer to miss out on a court date. They might not be waiting in the courtroom when you arrive, but they'll show up. They also book court dates at their convenience, meaning you probably wont be the only person there dealing with this officer.
Is there a way for me to get the judge to get rid of the points?
I don't have any prior violation.
Points are automatically added by the Ministry upon receiving your conviction. Nobody before that has anything to do with points. So they answer would be no.
Points are rather worthless anyways. They disappear 2 years from the day you were charged. Nobody cares about points other than the Ministry. It's the conviction that really matters to the average driver.
My trial is next week. Is there any point of going, or should I just pay the fine online. Do i have anything to gain if I go?
That's something you have to decide. Everyone has their own situation. Not everyone has the luxury of missing work, finding child care, having transportation, or whatever the reason may be.
You certainly have nothing to lose. Worst case scenario, you can always plead guilty when you show up. There's no harm in attending if you have the spare time.
It doesn't sound like you've prepared any defense so you'd just be relying on a bit of luck, however slim that chance may be.
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