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FightBack Forums _ Speeding and other Criminal Offences _ Driver query

Posted by: ASTEP Sun, 2 Jun 2019 - 09:29
Post #1489339

I was driving along the motorway (to the airport to catch a flight) one evening with my partner when I saw whom we believed to be was a person who has been stalking me for a year. My partner told me to turn off the motorway and then double back. He offered to drive, so we swapped places. Moving forward I got a speeding ticket (66mph in what was normally a 70mph motorway but apparently there were 50mph warning red lights above), but we genuinely didn't know which of us was driving. We admitted that it would have been one or the other of us and asked for a photograph, but it is impossible to say who it is. What should we do?

Posted by: Jlc Sun, 2 Jun 2019 - 09:40
Post #1489341

If the driver is not unequivocally named then the matter will go to court.

If you can convince the court that you did not know who was driving and could not identify them after reasonable diligence then you’ll walk clear.

Otherwise, it will be 6 points and a bill likely more than £1,000.

Photo’s rarely assist and are to identify the offence and the vehicle only.

Think carefully...

Posted by: NewJudge Sun, 2 Jun 2019 - 10:20
Post #1489347

QUOTE (Jlc @ Sun, 2 Jun 2019 - 10:40) *
Think carefully...


Seconded.

Whilst that speed is a little too fast for the offer of a course, it will qualify for a Fixed Penalty (£100 and three points).

The chances of you convincing a court that you were unable to recall who was driving are quite slim. You will have to demonstrate that you "...did not know and could not with reasonable diligence have ascertained who the driver of the vehicle was.". Simply turning up and relating the facts as you have here will not do. It can be done but success stories such as this one are few and far between:

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-202833/Christine-Hamilton-cleared-speeding.html

The cost of failure in these cases is high. You will face a fine of a week and a half's net income, six points, court costs and an endorsement code that will see considerably increased insurance premiums for up to five years. It is acceptable in your circumstances to name the person most likely to have been the driver and that will cost you a hundred quid with little or no impact on your premiums. The choice is yours but I know what I would do.

Posted by: Redivi Sun, 2 Jun 2019 - 15:40
Post #1489396

How can you not know who was driving if you say you swapped places ?
Do you mean that you don't know if the incident was before or after swap ?

If it was on the road where you doubled back, a perfectly reasonable reply would be :

If the direction was X, the driver was A
If the direction was Y, the driver was B

Posted by: NewJudge Sun, 2 Jun 2019 - 15:56
Post #1489401

I must say it did strike me as a bit odd that you didn't know. Presumably you know where the alleged offence occurred. It's not clear what you mean by "doubled back". Did you cover that stretch (in the same direction) twice with one of you at the wheel on each occasion? Anyway, if you don't know, you don't know. But your choices remain the same.

Posted by: cp8759 Sun, 2 Jun 2019 - 16:11
Post #1489405

QUOTE (Redivi @ Sun, 2 Jun 2019 - 16:40) *
If the direction was X, the driver was A
If the direction was Y, the driver was B

Surely the direction of travel can be identified by finding the camera on GSV, and maybe by asking for photos to aid in the identification of the driver (eve if taken form the rear, these are likely to identify the direction of travel).

Posted by: ASTEP Mon, 3 Jun 2019 - 01:53
Post #1489480

Thank you for your replies everyone.

"Do you mean that you don't know if the incident was before or after swap ?" Yes, that's right. We came from off the motorway on which we were heading north, then swapped and headed south, and then got back onto the same section of motorway heading north (within say five minutes of each other), so aren't sure who was driving because it's clear that the offence took part on the drive north section, the section we both covered within a short frame of time.

I see the reasoning in not going to court (because the cost is far greater should one lose, and I don't think I would be any good in a witness box anyway because I'd be way too nervous) but may i ask two questions. Firstly, what if we decide to put down my name and pay the fine (and we are genuine in that it's 50-50 choice, not more likely my partner or more likely me), but subsequent evidence proves it was my partner? Would we not then be in serious trouble for putting down the wrong person?

Secondly, whilst searching the Internet for this forum I came across the the below link. The first letter is actually something like what I wrote. What if instead of paying the fine I send a similar letter as the second one. If they came back and said 'We are not satisfied and you will have to go to court, here's the date' can you then instead of going to court pay the fine? If so, I think I would rather make a case in such a letter and fail if the result is still 'only' 3 points and £100 fine.

http://www.nopenaltypoints.co.uk/templates-you-do-not-know-who-was-driving.html

Posted by: The Rookie Mon, 3 Jun 2019 - 06:07
Post #1489482

Naming the wrong driver accidentally is only the same offence as not naming the driver.

If you and your partner can’t ID the driver how would anyone else?

Those templates date from a long long time ago (at least 15 years), while there was a time the Police would drop ‘I don’t know’ cases (my parents was), that is no longer the case and they WILL now go to court when you would have to show you couldn’t ID the driver despite exercising reasonable diligence, the courts set a high bar for that and successes while certainly possible and by no means assured. When the risk is circa £1200 and 6 points or £100 and 3 points on a circa 50:50 call..........

Posted by: The Slithy Tove Mon, 3 Jun 2019 - 08:35
Post #1489503

If either of you has tracking enabled on your mobile phone, then you should be able to get a pretty precise timeline indicating the 2 times you were on the same stretch of motorway. Hopefully one of those will coincide with the time on the NIP - as long as the clocks are all accurate.

Posted by: NewJudge Mon, 3 Jun 2019 - 18:41
Post #1489674

QUOTE (ASTEP @ Mon, 3 Jun 2019 - 02:53) *
...but subsequent evidence proves it was my partner?

There is most unlikely to be any subsequent evidence. If you unequivocally nominate a driver the matter will just be dealt with in the usual way.
QUOTE (ASTEP @ Mon, 3 Jun 2019 - 02:53) *
What if instead of paying the fine I send a similar letter as the second one. If they came back and said 'We are not satisfied and you will have to go to court, here's the date' can you then instead of going to court pay the fine?

Beware of advice from sites like the one you mention. Some of it is very misleading.

You have a duty to provide the driver's details and the police are not obliged to help you with that task. You can only avoid a conviction if you can convince the court that you have used the reasonable diligence required. If you send a letter similar to any of those templates the police will no longer pursue the speeding matter and proceedings will begin to prosecute you for failing to provide the driver's details. Once that happens you will not have the option to accept the speeding fine; a fixed penalty will not be offered as they do not know who to offer it to.

You must decide if you want to defend a "Failure to provide driver's details" charge or nominate the most likely driver.

Posted by: Logician Wed, 5 Jun 2019 - 14:15
Post #1490136

Mentioning the case of DSI Roberts is not a magic bullet to make this go away, read about the repercussions from the Roberts case https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/this-britain/police-chief-admits-errors-over-case-of-speeding-detective-9263586.html and see if you think the police are likely to drop your case.

Decide who was most likely to have been driving, were you speeding before or was it your partner trying to catch up your stalker, and name them. If you do not know for certain and the photo does not show who, how can there be any further evidence? If there is, it is a genuine error, not an attempt to evade justice.


Posted by: roythebus Fri, 14 Jun 2019 - 19:01
Post #1492565

It seems a bit odd that if you were driving to the airport to catch a flight that you would have time to double back over the same route and come back along it again, unless of course you had plenty of time to hand. Then the judge may ask what time is check-in for your flight.

Where did you see the "stalker", driving in the same direction, walking along the pavement, driving the other way? The road must have been a dual carriageway for it to be a normally a 70 limit; if it had red 50 signs it would surely have been a motorway. there's very few non-motorways that have variable speed limits.

Posted by: Logician Fri, 14 Jun 2019 - 20:42
Post #1492585

The OP did say it was a motorway:

QUOTE
66mph in what was normally a 70mph motorway but apparently there were 50mph warning red lights above

QUOTE
We came from off the motorway on which we were heading north, then swapped and headed south, and then got back onto the same section of motorway heading north


Posted by: roythebus Mon, 17 Jun 2019 - 16:35
Post #1493182

Yes, sorry I seem to have missed that bit. but the same comments, why would anyone wanting to catch a flight double back along a motorway where the next junction could be some distance away, double back and risk missing the check-in time for the flight? Unless of course they had a lot of time to spare.

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