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Ontario Highway Traffic Act

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If Charged with Careless while in Accident, how to fight it?
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 12:11 am 
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A friend of mine was charged a while back for Careless, just becuz he rear ended a driver who didn't have the right of way, and came right in front of my friends car, basically cutting him off and making him rear end him.

Are there any defense strategies for such a case?

Thanks

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 12:57 am 
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Just the facts........The other driver caused the accident by failing to remain in his lane........now how to prove it.....that is your question, young Jedi.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 10:46 am 
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Our oldest boy faced this exact same scenario a few months back. Because it was his first HTA offense AND it is a very serious charge, we decided to pay the $400 to hire a paralegal. The Crown would have to call both the officer and the victim to the stand to successfully win a conviction. Neither showed on the court date and the careless charge was promptly dismissed.

My belief is that the Crown knew the case would be tough and didn't even bother subpoenaing the witness or the cop. He knew that an experienced ticket fighter would rip his case to shreds so he didn't even bother preparing.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:54 am 
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Careless driving is one of the most severe charges under the HTA and also one of the hardest to prove. The mere fact you were in an accident shouldn't trigger the charge. It should be a marked departure from due care and attention.

Police are infamous for over using this charge. They come across the accident scene, somebody caused the accident, they should be charged with something. Unless the cop is an accident reconstruction expert, there will be little evidence to warrant the charge.

Cuthbertson J did an excellent job describing the essential elements of the charge in R. v. Morgan, 2008 ONCJ 336.

And as always, the best defence is a solid disclosure request. If that does not provide the essential elements to meet the charge, argue improper disclosure (as opposed to going to trial and arguing non-suit).

*******************************************************
Too technical? My bad.

1a. request disclosure (evidence, witness info, witness will say statements, criminal records, etc.) AND

1b. ask for an explanation and clarification of the charge: why was I charged, what evidence do you have that I have committed an offence?

2. When you get the accident report (typed please), it will not give a good indication of why your were charged.

3. Re-request disclosure noting the essential elements of the charge and the reason why you were charged are missing.

4. File an application for a stay under s. 24(1) based on the fact that you were not provided with the evidence against you (a section 7 Charter violation).

5. If it comes to trial, after the Crown has rested, you make a motion of non-suit based on the fact the Crown has not proven the charge.

Finally if you don't win #4 or #5 above, then...

6. Get up on the stand, note that this is a strict liability charge and say basically what is described in paragraph [14] of the case I cited above:

Quote:
Where the defendant can show, in circumstances that might be reasonably be true, that the defendant was faced with an unexpected, unforeseeable sudden circumstance, and that he reacted as best any reasonable, prudent driver could, this should raise a reasonable doubt.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 12:56 pm 
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Bookm wrote:
He knew that an experienced ticket fighter would rip his case to shreds so he didn't even bother preparing.


Did you enter the courtroom with your CWD jacket on???? :D :D

"I now call to the stand, Mr. Bookm............. Uhhh uuuummmm the crown has no evidence."

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 1:20 pm 
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Won't happen to me. If someone lane/brake checks me, I'll have all to evidence I need ;)

Image

I picked up this small, digital mini-cam on sale for $150. I put a $35 8-gig card in it (good for 1-hour HD recording) and an AC adapter to the cigarette lighter. A little Velcro and I'm good to go.

Dash cams are growing in popularity for a good reason. This post is a good example of why.

Cheap insurance I figure!!

sample: (click "high quality")



Last edited by Bookm on Thu Feb 05, 2009 4:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 1:24 pm 
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Reflections wrote:
Did you enter the courtroom with your CWD jacket on???? :D :D "


Definitely wasn't me, LOL. I stayed well clear and let the paid pro handle this one, hehe!


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:38 pm 
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I like the video set up could have come in handy when............

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 9:16 pm 
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Thanks for the help guys. Hopefully he should be able to get his ticket off.

TC, Great step by step instructions!

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 9:19 pm 
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Bookm,,Thats a great idea. I was thinking of ways to record my driving too. I like the way you set it up there.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:47 pm 
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Bookm wrote:
Won't happen to me. If someone lane/brake checks me, I'll have all to evidence I need ;)

Dash cams are growing in popularity for a good reason. This post is a good example of why


It's all good until the electronic components in vehicle law comes into place :shock:

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 4:17 pm 
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hwybear wrote:
Bookm wrote:
Won't happen to me. If someone lane/brake checks me, I'll have all to evidence I need ;)

Dash cams are growing in popularity for a good reason. This post is a good example of why


It's all good until the electronic components in vehicle law comes into place :shock:


Remote controls, they're great. Then you can stuff the videocam in the headliner and away we go.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 7:38 pm 
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hwybear wrote:
It's all good until the electronic components in vehicle law comes into place :shock:


But wouldn't a blind-recording camera be a "non-distraction" to a driver? I thought they would ban certain types of equipment, like cellphones and portable dvd players, but not radio! Else why not ban blackboxes in newer cars?

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 8:15 pm 
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racer wrote:
hwybear wrote:
It's all good until the electronic components in vehicle law comes into place :shock:


But wouldn't a blind-recording camera be a "non-distraction" to a driver? I thought they would ban certain types of equipment, like cellphones and portable dvd players, but not radio! Else why not ban blackboxes in newer cars?


until it is here no worries....but correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't that the only devices allowed in the dash area have to "aid" in the navigation of a vehicle?

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 10:52 pm 
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Stick it on the visor and your clear.........

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