Speeding and Follow Too Closely

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Zatota
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Re: Speeding and Follow Too Closely

Unread post by Zatota on

argyll wrote:I think you hit the nail on the head Zatota with your last sentence. Your issue is with the actions of the officer and if so then it is your right to make a complaint about him. But the JP won't care and will shut you down very very quickly which is only going to make you pissed off with life. I've seen it so many times. The court is only interested in your actions and, as I mistakenly posted in another thread, miscarriage of justice for police actions are reserved for very egregious things.
I agree with many that our justice system, while not perfect, is generally well balanced. However, if what you said is true, that JPs really don't care what police officers do, perhaps our system is more flawed than I thought. Now I'm really curious to know what caused that officer several years ago to plead guilty to improper operation of an emergency vehicle.


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Unread post by argyll on

" that JPs really don't care what police officers do"

That is NOT what I said. But you have my point of view so no need to flog a dead horse.
Former Ontario Police Officer. Advice will become less relevant as the time goes by !


Zatota
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Unread post by Zatota on

I probably oversimplified that. But, you're right, there's no use flogging a dead horse.

At this point, I'll just wait for my trial date to arrive so I can start the disclosure process.


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argyll
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Unread post by argyll on

Yes, that's normal.
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jsherk
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Unread post by jsherk on

As long as there is some kind of location then it is acceptable. If they left the location area blank then that would a problem.
+++ This is not legal advice, only my opinion +++


Zatota
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Unread post by Zatota on

That's what I thought, unfortunately.

I'll just wait for my trial date so I can request disclosure. I still think we were in Brampton, not Vaughan, and that the Brampton Court, not Newmarket, should have jurisdiction. But it will take several months before I know that, based on the pace at which Newmarket works.


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Unread post by Zatota on

The trial has been set for July 17. I've requested disclosure; I'll keep you posted.


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Unread post by Zatota on

I finally heard from the Prosecutors office. My trial is Monday and I had requested disclosure in a timely manner. After several messages, someone called me today to say the office still has not received disclosure from the officer. She went on to say that, unless I hear something further, I should still show up for my trial Monday and the Prosecutor will "instruct" me on how to proceed.

My guess is the Prosecutor will suggest I go outside with the officer to review his notes. Unless I see something nice and juicy (e.g., the officer has not recorded the times at which he tested the radar before and after the stop, and has something that will work in my favour on the Follow Too Closely charge), I will use the "this does not give me enough time to make a full answer and defence" argument for an adjournment that should be attributed to the Prosecution.

I'll keep you posted.


Speedtaxed
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Unread post by Speedtaxed on

Questions to ask:

1) Were WE speeding that day?

2) I thought I was just keeping up with traffic and wasn't looking at my speedometer. Are you sure you were going that fast and if you are why didn't you have your lights on?

3) Approximately how far behind you was I?

4) How long did you observe me for?

5) Can you typically make rear view observations while driving 135km/hr without your lights on? Was that part of your police training?

6) How much closer do objects appear as you observe them in a rear view mirror? How did your police training tell you to account for that factor?


7) Did you slow down quickly? For what reason?

8) How many times did you look at your speedometer while these events unfolded and how far behind you was I at each point? (Sometimes with math you can prove contradictions and I'm fairly sure the officer who probably isn't that bright will start to make stuff up.)

9) How far behind you was I after you slowed down quickly?

10) What is a safe distance to be following? Could it be the distance needed to stop quickly if the person in front of you slows down quickly?

11) How was it that even though your car has better breaks than mine I was able to slow down quickly without hitting you if I was travelling 135km/hr at an unsafe distance?


Zatota
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Unread post by Zatota on

Thanks, Speedtaxed. I have a bunch of other questions I'm prepared to ask as well. There's no way I'd ask Q2, though. That shows irresponsibility and suggests I was speeding.

What I plan to use in my favour on both charges is the officer's ability to identify a car in his rearview mirror (as in your Q5), particularly 15 minutes after sunrise in November, when the sun is still very low in the sky and every vehicle in his rearview would appear black (or, at least, the same colour). Similarly, for the follow too closely charge, I plan to ask him if his rearview mirror was dimmed (his vehicle has a sensor-based rearview, as many vehicles have these days). If he doesn't know, or if he says no, I couldn't have been tailgating him. My lights were still on (they were still required at that time), so my car would have caused his rearview to dim.

Either way, I don't think much is going to happen Monday.


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Unread post by Speedtaxed on

The officer probably doesn't have you with radar. I think that is the reason for non-disclosure.

Do you think the officer wants to admit he was doing 135km in front of you, without his lights on and obviously going for entrapment? For a JP to take the officer's testimony for a conviction he has to be convinced of his judgment and integrity. You can ask him all kinds of damaging questions after that admission. Do you think you were lacking extreme judgment to be going 135km trying to pace someone through your rear view mirror and without your lights on? Did your training indicate this should be done? (He'll have to say no).

Why did you put the person in the car in front of you at risk by not watching him to make pacing observations in your rear view going 135km/hr? Does that not indicate you care more about issuing traffic tickets rather than the issue of safety and that you don't have any credibility when it comes to judging what is safe and what is not safe? If you would put the person's life at risk ahead of you to issue a ticket does that not indicate you would do anything to get a ticket in which case why should the JP believe in your judgment and testimony?

In your conclusion to JP state officer wasn't trained to make speed observations from rear view mirror going 135km/hr. Not only that it was ill advised and put multiple lives at risk by not paying attention to the traffic in front of him. One has to severely question not only the officer's judgment but also his motivation for issuing a ticket by becoming a worse hazard than the Offence he was trying to ticket. Not only did he not follow correct training protocol and attempt to make a visual observation that was both unsafe and for which he didn't have training, he didn't follow protocol along with the prosecutor and I was not given adequate disclosure in a timely fashion. Since the officer did not follow proper protocol and showed severely impaired judgment you can not put any faith in his person or testimony and must therefore acquit.


Zatota
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Unread post by Zatota on

Don't worry; I've thought of all those angles. I'm just not going to speculate until I've seen the disclosure.


ShrekTek
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Unread post by ShrekTek on

FYI officers in Ontario are allowed to speed without their lights on, so the officer will have no problem admitting this in front of the JP and the JP will not care that the officer was speeding because the law says they can. The officer is not on trial, the defendant is. The officer will say they saw the defendant speeding, and the JP will say "the officer said it, so it must be true" and will find defendant guilty regardless of whether or not the officer did something unsafe.

I do not agree that this is how it should be, but will be surprised if the outcome is different.
I am not a lawyer and I am not a paralegal and I do not give legal advice.
All statements made are my opinion only.

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argyll
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Unread post by argyll on

Exactly this. What the officer was doing is completely irrelevant to the trial of the accused. If you feel the officer's behaviour was wrong then make a complaint through the OIPRD but the JP is only interested in what the driver was doing. The line of questioning as suggested will be shut down immediately.




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