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Going to court this week for Improper right turn
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 22, 2010 2:32 pm 
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Location: Toronto
I'm in court mid-week in Toronto to fight an improper turn (Prohibited between 7-9 4-6 mon-fri). Like many others, nailed by David Miller's toll collectors.

This is my second date. First date in November was adjourned due to insufficient disclosure by crown. I did the ticketcombat website for the FLSA, but the prosecutor pooh-pooh it, pointing to section 14 covering voluntary compliance by the city. He also said that this defense comes up about 3-4 times a month, so a few people are obviously reading this and ticketcombat.

My backup was the insufficient disclosure, (used the disclosure form from ticketcombat), prosecutor didn't provide typed disclosure. No way to read the cops' chicken scratch.

Now I'm going for round 2, again armed with prosecutorial screw-ups and delays - I'm asking for a stay or another adjournment. If the second is granted, i'm going to be at 18 months...and will be doing an 11b.

Worst case, if the JP doesn't boogie along, I'll try the FLSA.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 5:18 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2010 2:16 pm
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Location: Toronto
Back from court today.

Here's what happened:

First of all, lets get it off my chest so I can focus on the facts...going to traffic court is a bit like going to a traveling carnival, and the any consistency or real application of the law by the JP and the OPSEU prosecutor (she asked for her union mandated 15 min break!) are strictly coincidental.

They saved me for 2nd last, along with someone else who asked for trial. The prosecutor announced that I was seeking an adjournment, which I quickly corrected that I was looking for a stay in proceedings based on incomplete disclosure. The Prosecutor interjected that I must file a charter 11b challenge to request a stay of proceedings, 15 days prior, which wasn't done.

I countered that I wasn't seeking a delay to trial stay, but that the prosecution had failed to provide adequate disclosure. (This is my second appearance on the charge, first time was adjournment determined by the JP to be "no one's fault" - also for the prosecution not providing me with typed notes.

I clarified that I was seeking a copy of the certified by-law (Toronto), and waived a stack of served disclosures.

I think this move was not something the prosecutor was expecting or accustomed, as she was claiming that I had copies of the officers notes. (I do, after 2 disclosure requests).

She got quite excited and claimed that I was charged under the HTA (144.9) (turning during prohibited hours) --> the classic sign for the French language defense (Mon-Fri 4-6), not under a bylaw, and there was no need to provide a bylaw.

I pointed out to the JP that quite clearly, the sign didn't materialize out of thin air, and that some official act must have put it there, unless the sign was put up there in error by the city, or by unknown 3rd parties. I also waived pages printed off the City Of Toronto on-line bylaws database stating that I couldn't find any reference (after an exhaustive search) to a by-law governing turns from the street in question.

The JP remarked to the prosecutor (this was my impression) that she "understood" (I'm paraphrasing her Worship) what I was getting at, she'd heard about something similar before.

The Prosecutor (along with the cop, who remarkably showed up just for little me) kept leafing thru books and arguing that this is a HTA offense, and that no by-law was needed.

I asserted that there the presence of the sign was not prima faciae evidence of a by-law, and that there had to be something supporting the sign there.

I also tried to mention the case in Ottawa with residents placing stop-signs, at which point the JP cut me off and told me she didn't want to hear about it.

She then proceeded to tell me that finding the by-law was my responsibility, and that I should check with City Hall. I was tempted to ask her if she really expected me to do the prosecutors job for them as well, but bit my tongue.

She reiterated that my options were trial (which she made clear wouldn't proceed today, as she had had enough, pleading guilty, or adjournement) I asked for a moment to think it thru, and asked for an adjournement pre-emptory on the crown, which her Worship denied.

Got a new trial date in July, 17 months after the date of the offense.

So, let the feedback begin: 11b, error by JP, other suggestions. I didn't even get to FLSA, but I'm glad the Prosecutor pointed out that these are HTA (provincial charges)...maybe it'll help the trial if it goes there...and I try the FLSA as a last resort...


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 26, 2010 8:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:26 pm
Posts: 2881
Location: Toronto
I'd go check with City Hall and come back with a stack of documents showing that you could not find the by-law. If no by-law exists, according to O.Reg 615, the sign is not valid and is not enforceable.

Long story short: File the 11B. 17 months for a simple "proceed contrary to sign at intersection" is ridiculous. And this delay wasn't your fault. They're either ready for the trial or they're not. If you're the one who is not ready, then the 11B won't fly, but that's not the case here.

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* The above is NOT legal advice. By acting on anything I have said, you assume responsibility for any outcome and consequences. *
http://www.OntarioTicket.com OR http://www.OHTA.ca


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