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Beanie
Hi all

Prosecution are continuing this case to trial, so I thought I'd get more advice!

Driving to work back on May 17th 2007, I drove through a village I don't normally go through which has the following terminal signs upon entry (picture taken 18th May 2007):-


Officer with hand-held radar gun clocks me at 40mph, which was what I believed the limit was (think it was reduced to 30mph in 2005). No crazy braking or anything - I haven't denied travelling at 40mph.

I've been pleading not guilty to this on the basis of:-

- Terminal signs obscured contrary to Section 85 of the Road Traffic Act
- Inadequate street lighting system - again Section 85 of RTA
- Terminal signs do not comply with The Traffic Signs Regulations and General directions 2002 due to yellow background

Based on the picture and details above, am I heading in the right direction - or am I misguided/using outdated information?

I intend to go out and measure distance between the few street lights that exist (bolted to telephone poles?!?), as I'm pretty sure they are more than 183 meters apart.

Admittedly, the sign on the other side of the road is not obstructed by foliage like this one - although oncoming traffic did obscure it at the time.

Its a non-principal road (I don't think it even has a B number). It is the road through Sherington, Buckinghamshire.

I didn't "tamper" with the bushes - that's exactly how they are, despite the statement shown in next post.

Thanks in advance.

Paul
Beanie
Statement from police officer:-

I am Police Constable **** Joe Bloggs of the Thames Valley Police and am currently staioned on the Roads Policing Department at Milton Keynes. I have been a traffic officer for the past 15 years and am currently employed as the Road Safety Constable for the Milton Keynes Police area. I am an advanced car driver and Intruct and operate the Laser LTI 20.20 TSM Ultralyte 100 speed detection device.

I have been requested to provide a further statement with regard to my dealings with a Mr Beanie on the 17th May 2007 with particular regard to a defence statement made by him. I understand that Mr Beanie has suggested that there were no street lighting present and that the 30 mph terminal signs at the entrance to the village were not visible. He also provided the court with a number of photographs purporting to show this.

On Thursday 17th May 2007 I conducted a speed check on the High Street, Sherington between 7:45 and 9:10 Am. During this check I was alone and in full uniform. I had taken up a position opposite the stone built bus shelter in the centre of the village and was checking vehicles travelling towards me from the Olney direction. Before beginning any enforcement in a location such as this I check certain things, these are done as a matter of course at every rural village location. The first check is to make sure that the terminal signs at the entrance to the village were present and clearly visible. There have to be two signs present one on each side of the road. I can confirm that this was done prior to the check and that they were, present, clean and visible and not obstructed in any way. The second check is to make sure that all repeater signs are also present, clean and visible. These signs are only required when a road is not restricted, in other words when there is no system of street lighting up to 183 meters apart. The High Street Sherington is a restricted road and has such a system of street lights running along the offside of the road when driving down the High Street from the direction of Olney. There are further checks carried out before enforcement takes place and these are accounted for in my previous statement.

In regard to the Photographs supplied to the court, which I have not had the opportunity to view I cannot make therefore direct comment on them. I would add however that photographs can be taken from many different angles and with varying lenses and can be made to distort a motorist's true view. I would go further and state that they can also be taken at different times of the year and what the view was on the day in question may be entirely different two weeks later. This is especially true when it is vegitation and tree foliage that has caused the obstruction. During the summer months it is quite common for me to have to trim branches and leaves from in front of signs and repeaters before commencing enforcement. I would again state however that this was not the case when I checked the signs on the 17th May 2007.

Signed and dated 2nd November 2007
bama
well those branches didn't grow in a couple of weeks that is for sure. Much less so in one day !!

what is/was the sign on the other side of the road like ?

Beanie
QUOTE (Beanie @ Mon, 12 Nov 2007 - 21:14) *
Admittedly, the sign on the other side of the road is not obstructed by foliage like this one - although oncoming traffic did obscure it at the time.


Can make no claim that the other is obscured, although it was obstructed by oncoming traffic (this is a popular route for Souls of Olney buses returning from the school run!). I think this will be difficult for me to prove though:-




Photographs were taken following day at lunchtime (for safety, as this location follows a left-hand bend in the road) - on a standard 3 megapixel digital cameraphone (Sony Ericsson K800i).

My arguement is that you cannot enforce a speed restriction if the signage is unclear, and street lighting is obscure and spaced at large intervals.
The Rookie
I think when the PC sees the photo's he may just wish he'd kept his trap shut, perhaps an IPCC complaint as regards perjury (that is "knowingly or RECKLESSLY giving a statement......")

Simon
Boomer
QUOTE (Beanie @ Mon, 12 Nov 2007 - 21:15) *
Statement from police officer:-

I am Police Constable ****
...During the summer months it is quite common for me to have to trim branches and leaves from in front of signs and repeaters before commencing enforcement.


WTF??

mb
bama
can you prove when the photos were taken ?
am not disputing at all, just asking here and now. I donlt even expect an answer to the question to be posted here necessarily.


(based on the photo evidence here occifer's statement obvious b/s IMV. why risk his career and jail time for a speeding conviction ? madness. unless he/she is so used to doing this that the thought was there was no risk as it is always 'got away with'. The good BiBs who hang out here must be livid with this joker - and his ilk- talk about making your job harder... )
nemo
QUOTE (bama @ Tue, 13 Nov 2007 - 22:29) *
can you prove when the photos were taken ?
am not disputing at all, just asking here and now.

icon_idea.gif Those verges look fairly recently mown to me. A quick call to the council's maintenance department and they should be able to provide the mowing schedule for that section of road. All being well, the schedule will sit neatly with the date the photos were taken.
bama
nice one nemo !


wolfie
QUOTE (The Rookie @ Tue, 13 Nov 2007 - 17:55) *
I think when the PC sees the photo's he may just wish he'd kept his trap shut, perhaps an IPCC complaint as regards perjury (that is "knowingly or RECKLESSLY giving a statement......")


I think there are two issues here - firstly the photo's ALL need to be taken from the veiwpoint of you driving your vehicle in a normal manner. Assuming that you have a right hand drive, then the first photo is a waste of time for you - you would have to be driving with at least 2 wheels on the grass to have this view.

The lower photo is better, but I would still be standing on the white lines to make it completely obvious that you could not see the left sign. I would also stage the photos at 25 metre intervals along the road to show at what stage you CAN see the sign (i.e. as you go past it, therefore, not at all). Work out how long it takes to travel 25 metres and then work out how long you can possibly see the sign for, before you are past it.

Regarding the policeman, he is being incredibly stupid. He probably isn't even allowed to carry garden shears or pruning shears in his car, and he would not be permitted to use them in any case. How does he know whose property he is damaging by the pruning? Is it Council, in which case he must have permission? Is it private tree overhanging? Is it a farmers? Health & Safety would have a field day.

What about an innocent letter to the relevant force asking them what their policy is regarding obscured signage? What should happen is that the bobby puts in a highways defect report and the council remedy the situation. I can't see a policemen being authorised to do anything that doesn't involve a genuine emergency situation.

Your biggest problem, already raised, is how do you prove when you took the photo's?

If you went back and the sign was still obscured, this would help, especially if there were no signs of pruning, but you need to independently show what the time and date was. You could simply hold up a newspaper in shot to show that it was (at least) after a certain date.

Faraway
Interesting thread. I agree the first photo is irrelevant as it doesnt show the sign from the driving position while the second clearly shows mowing occurred. I would put the date that the picture was taken as sometime in late June and early July as the grass is usually mowed then on road side verges. As for the H&S of the BiB clearing the vegetation i agree he wouldnt necessarily have had a risk assessment for the clearance of vegetation. I mean what is he? A policeman or a Council worker tasked with this job? The right sign could have been obscured and that's why two signs are required either side of the road to stop that happening. Establish the species of tree that is overhanging and any tree surgeon should tell you when it would be in full leaf. if its an Ash tree then it it doesnt go into leaf until near the end of may. Now in November the sign should be well visible.
nemo
QUOTE (Faraway @ Wed, 14 Nov 2007 - 09:38) *
The right sign could have been obscured and that's why two signs are required either side of the road to stop that happening.

No. To signify the start of a speed limit, there must be a sign on both sides of the road at the point where the speed limit starts.

And the local authority are required to maintain the signs to ensure that the limit remains applicable.
bama
QUOTE (nemo @ Wed, 14 Nov 2007 - 10:15) *
QUOTE (Faraway @ Wed, 14 Nov 2007 - 09:38) *
The right sign could have been obscured and that's why two signs are required either side of the road to stop that happening.

No. To signify the start of a speed limit, there must be a sign on both sides of the road at the point where the speed limit starts.

And the local authority are required to maintain the signs to ensure that the limit remains applicable.


Indeed. and a lot of them are crap at this/do not bother.
there is a set of 40 terminal signs I know of where the left had sign is position behind a tree trunk - and the tree is OLD...
Faraway
"No. To signify the start of a speed limit, there must be a sign on both sides of the road at the point where the speed limit starts."

That's what i meant by two signs but should have added one on either side of the road.
jdfi
Can you ask the policeman to produce photographic evidence to confirm that, on the day in question, the trees weren't overhanging?

Measuring the lamp-posts also seems a good idea... but 183 metres is a long distance so don't be surprised if these are in fact correct.
Barking Mad
Dating pictures:

I have used the Put the Daily Mirror in the picture (and keep it for reference) technique.

But that will only prove a picture is YOUNGER than the date of the Newspaper.

Here, the O/P claims (and I have no reason to disbelieve him, I might add - he is more likely to be telling the truth than the police, who DO systematically lie about shooting people getting on trains and fit people up for murders like the Kiszko case) that he took the picture some months ago. The CPS will claim the pictures were taken yesterday; and as we all know - nudge, nudge, wink, wink style - we have to prove everything we say whereas the authorities don't.

Had I been him, when taking these pictures I would have also used a video camera with Radio 4 or Radio 5 on from the BBC whilst videoing the scene also recording the news buletin of that day, to be further supported with print-outs from the BBC's website.

That proves the date without any real question.
bama
your radio/tv recording method would not really prove anything.. podcasts, sky plus..

independent witness (and wet film) is the best way I reckon but the length of those branches and the type of tree and the state of the foliage means that sign is covered up at least during the summer months for the last several years.
Find a tree surgeon and chat to him. what tree species is it, when does it leaf, what are the growth rates ? etc.

PC's statement is just about asking for him to be torn apart in court IMV.

Submit pic and good argument and IF the CPS read the file before court day (okay big IF but they might if/as the PC is called) then the case may get 'mysteriously' dropped by the CPS. or the PC will be 'sick' that day..
As well shown here anyone calling a PC should check their actual availability on the morning of the Court date, it turns out that often the CPS make a mistake of fact about witness availability...

so how many sessions have been done there this summer by PC Trimmer et al. ? last summer ? . .
Beanie
Thanks everyone for adding to this debate - it will obviously help me in court to have your objective remarks before I stand in front of the magistrates wink.gif

I certainly will question the officers statement, based on my dated pictures, and find out what tools they carry in the cars - those branches are quite substantial! I'll try and find out when that section was mown by local council - is it not the Highways Agencies responsibility to ensure signage is operational?

I've got lots of dated pictures from various distances on the approach to the sign (obviously I was trying not to become a martyr - it follows a left hand bend!), they are written to a dated CD (in an attempt to prevent any disputes that I have "tampered with evidence"). The sign is completely invisible from about 10 meters away.

Good point wolfie - the signs are visible for a very short period of time following the bend, I will work out how long.

Unfortunatly, I don't own a DeLorean so I can't get an accurate picture of what it was like the day after the event with any validating evidence biggrin.gif

My main defence is that the street lighting system is inadequate, and by definition in "The Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2002" does not make the road a restricted one. I will be visiting the area to take pictures of every lamp, and get measurements of the distance between each.

Does anyone know where I can get a full PDF copy of "The Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984"?

Thanks everyone for your help wink.gif

Paul


RD400E
To answer the photo date prob. Most cameras have an indelible memory where the count and frame number of photos previously taken are kept. This is so you can download your camera many times into the same folder on your PC and it prevents overwriting earlier images, as the filenames are never reproduced.

For example:

Monday the 1st of whatever month you took a photo of your dog. That photo might be automatically called abc123.jpg
Tuesday the 2nd you take a photo of your cat and the photo is abc124.jpg and so on.

All you need is a timeline showing previous and later photo's to prove it.
The original file is timed and dated and cannot be altered.

This is also true if the card is re-formatted, or a different one is used. It's the camera that handles the file naming, unless you're unlucky enough to have one that doesn't !!!
Beanie
RD400E - you are spot on! I can catagorically prove my cameraphone has images with incremental names, in date order from May, with many other photos taken since - at other events that I can date (Santa Pod JapShow was in June, and the picutures follow!) wink.gif

Better just take the rude ones off before I show the court laugh.gif
RD400E
QUOTE (Beanie @ Wed, 14 Nov 2007 - 16:18) *
Better just take the rude ones off before I show the court laugh.gif


Be sure you don't corrupt the timeline, it's either alpha, numerical, or both.

Then again if the mags saw the rude ones they might take pity on you ohmy.gif
Beanie
Just to answer any smartarse techies out there - yes it could still be falsified.

If I took all the photos off - renamed them all later names - changed the date on the phone to May time and took the pictures - then put all the photos back on there again...

I don't need to do that though - as mine are genuine.
DieselMoment
QUOTE (Beanie @ Wed, 14 Nov 2007 - 16:01) *
Does anyone know where I can get a full PDF copy of "The Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984"?
Hiya Beanie! Here are some links you'll find useful.

http://www.statutelaw.gov.uk/legResults.as...amp;SortAlpha=0 This is the full version of the complete Act, as can be found on the UK Statute Law Database. Some of these long URLs confuse some browsers, so here's a tiny URL - http://tinyurl.com/2t7nln

The site is very good and quite easy to use. You can break it down into parts, or even sections within a part. The part which is relevant to your case is Part VI - Speed Limits


wolfie
QUOTE (Beanie @ Wed, 14 Nov 2007 - 16:18) *
RD400E - you are spot on! I can catagorically prove my cameraphone has images with incremental names, in date order from May, with many other photos taken since - at other events that I can date (Santa Pod JapShow was in June, and the picutures follow!) wink.gif


Sadly, as the police know only too well, dates and times can be changed on photos. Even if they are bracketed by real ones. The forensic requirements for digital are horrific.

No real help there, I'm afraid.

I imagine this will go away once you point out just how big a twat the policeman is being, but get your ducks in a row first - ask the relevant force what the procedure is for obscured signs, and send the letter from someone else, not yourself, just in case someone in the office has got a brain and puts 2 and 2 together.

No reason not to use the reply as evidence for your case.

I've never seen a statement from a policeman so utterly stupid. They must REALLY be getting leaned upon.
Barking Mad
QUOTE (bama @ Wed, 14 Nov 2007 - 15:45) *
your radio/tv recording method would not really prove anything.. podcasts, sky plus..
{snip}


Whilst not absolutely 100% impossible to forge / falsify; if I were to sit in my car with a video camera rolling and switch on the radio for it to instantly pick up radio 5 then switch to Hallam FM, then to Virgin Radio then back to Radio 5 in the car, then without stopping the video camera, alighted from the car to take evidential pictures AND were to subsequently write to all of the stations to ask them what they broadcast at so many minutes past whatever hour on such and such a date and presented that to the most sceptic individual immagineable, I just might thiink that could be deemed as overwhelming supporting evidence that the video could only have been made at a certain time on a specific date.

With or without podcasts, sky plus, etc - with the greatest of respects... And in any case even without having gone to these extremes, the mere fact of not stopping the tape after having switched on the radio for a few moments prior to alighting to film whatever would need to be filmed would convince most, I'm sure. Certainly better than a plain still picture taken on a digital camera
Beanie
lol - well short of videoing a police officer stood next to the sign and verbally confirming the date and time (because their testimony can be trusted over mine!) , I think I will just have to work with what I've got! I can't go back to May, and most of the leaves are off the trees now anyway biggrin.gif

I am quite happy for the police forensic team to verify that the pictures on my memory card have not been altered in any way, as the data and fragmentation of the solid state memory will prove that. Lets not get carried away though - the charge is exceeding 30 miles per hour countrary to section 81(1) and 89(1) of the RTRA...

Is it not true, according to The Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions Act 2002 schedule 17 item 10, that a terminal sign should have independant lighting if it is more than 50 meters away from the first street lamp?
Beanie
Phew, ok I have just measured the distance from terminal sign to terminal sign in Sherington, and photographed every street lamp in place:-
  1. 142m from obscured terminal sign to first street lamp
  2. 48m from 1st lamp to 2nd
  3. 81m from 2nd lamp to 3rd
  4. 116m from 3rd lamp to 4th
  5. 62m from 4th lamp to 5th
  6. 79m from 5th lamp to 6th
  7. 85m from 6th lamp to 7th
  8. 65m from 7th lamp to 8th
  9. 265m from 8th lamp to terminal sign at other end of village
Will get a GoogleEarth picture of the road to illustrate the situation to the court...

wolfie
QUOTE (Beanie @ Thu, 15 Nov 2007 - 14:12) *
  1. 265m from 8th lamp to terminal sign at other end of village
I'd like to know if this is legally true, but I would think that this stretch of road is nor legally enforceable at 30mph. It would start from the 1st lamp-post, as the distance from the terminal sign is more than 183m.

Assuming that there is no repeater on this stretch.

Did you get done within this 265m stretch or were you in the other section?


Beanie
Yes, it is a looooong way from the last street lamp to the other terminal sign...

Unfortunatly my direction of travel was from the other end of the village - thus given lamp post ordering 1 to 8. Think it would be a long stretch to quote distances in reverse order to the court - would this make the restriction uninforceable for the whole village though?

Still unsure of the legality of yellow backed signage - The Traffic Sign Regulations and General Directions 2002 appears to only allow white or grey backing. Schedule 17, item 15 appears to only allow signs 515.2, 2714, 2715, 3014 and 7031 - and this test case proves otherwise:-
http://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/news...y-be.1545038.jp
andy_foster
A single 'missing' streetlamp does not invalidate the restriction - de minimis - the law does not concern itself with triffles (unless they've got hundreds and thousands on top).


edit: If these are indeed streetlights (as opposed to footpath lights or some other type of lights), then the statutory defence of defective speed limit signage does not apply. You may however have a case for special reasons not to endorse - Bugess v West.
Ranger1640
If plod is out pruning the trees, what is he doing with the cuttings?

Is he disposing of the cuttings in accordance with the council or his constabulary’s policy on recycling or waste management?

Does he take the cuttings away with him or does he leave them at site, and how frequent does he carry out this procedure?

If he takes the cuttings away with him does he dispose of the cuttings in a council recycling centre?

If he did take this waste to a council recycling centre this would be commercial waste and he would not be permitted to dispose of such material in this way as most council recycling centres are only designed to take domestic waste.

The council charge the firms that dispose commercial waste at there facilities.

If he leaves them at site is he not guilty of littering or illegal dumping?

In the big scheme of things this may not be all that relevant but it could build up a picture of police lies.
RD400E
Is the particular plod an Arboricultural Specialist, does he understand the impact of incorrectly pruning foliage and the devastation he may cause.
This is a nit pick as well but one that may find him without a leg (or branch) to stand on
jdfi
QUOTE (RD400E @ Thu, 15 Nov 2007 - 21:17) *
Is the particular plod an Arboricultural Specialist, does he understand the impact of incorrectly pruning foliage and the devastation he may cause.
This is a nit pick as well but one that may find him without a leg (or branch) to stand on



LOL - this sounds like its gonna be a funny case - can I get a front stalls ticket please.

Wonder if he uses personal equipment, or police issue? Does he wear gloves?
MartinHP71
Wouldn't be worth while asking Mr PC Plod for his notebook, surely in there he would have noted the sign checks at the beginning of his speed schedule and whether he had ever noted having cut back trees or bushes.

Just a thought
Billy Bones
Reference the Lighting of Speed Limit Signs, I think Schedule 17, Item 10 of the TSRGD covers this and states:

(1) Where the sign is a terminal sign and is erected on a trunk or principal road within 50 metres of a street lamp lit by electricity, it shall throughout the hours of darkness —

(a) be continuously illuminated by means of internal or external lighting and may also be reflectorised; or

(b) while the street lamp is lit, be continuously illuminated by means of external lighting and shall also be reflectorised.


The TSRGD also covers the use of backing boards. Basically they can be either yellow or grey but must be square. So the one in the phot looks OK to me.

BB
PAUL_WAUGH
A quick point on the photo valedating can you not get the post office to stamp them with an official stamp which has the date on once the images are printed out? if there only a few days old they should be fine should they not?
RD400E
Apparently, PCSO's are not trained in deep water rescue, we have all heard that sad tale of late.

Did this particular plod or his force, carry out a health and safety risk assesment before geting the secateurs out ?

QUOTE
Wonder if he uses personal equipment, or police issue?
Very good jdfi biggrin.gif
dagon
I'm not sure if this has any relevance - was it lawful for him to trim the branches without prior consent from the council or who ever is responsible for the vegetation? There was a story of a man in Germany who trimmed trees to gain a better view of the sea and he violated a number of laws/acts one of which was related to conservation. He did not ask for consent either.
RD400E
QUOTE (dagon @ Fri, 16 Nov 2007 - 16:50) *
I'm not sure if this has any relevance - was it lawful for him to trim the branches without prior consent from the council or who ever is responsible for the vegetation? There was a story of a man in Germany who trimmed trees to gain a better view of the sea and he violated a number of laws/acts one of which was related to conservation. He did not ask for consent either.


Wolfie already made that observation HERE and it's quite ridiculous for a serving police officer to come out with that kind of a statement.
jeffreyarcher
There is so much guff in this thread, that I'm drawing attention to this post of Andy's in case it gets overlooked in the morass.
QUOTE (andy_foster @ Thu, 15 Nov 2007 - 17:26) *
If these are indeed streetlights (as opposed to footpath lights or some other type of lights), then the statutory defence of defective speed limit signage does not apply. You may however have a case for special reasons not to endorse - Bugess v West.

It is also unlikely that you would be successful with Burgess v West, because there were no street lights prior to the limit; i.e. there was nothing to mislead you that the limit was not 30 MPH when you saw the street lamps.
I assume that you were caught somewhere in the middle of the system of street lamps. If so, IMO, the only defence that you could have is if it could not be seen that you were in such a system.
The Rookie
I agree with JA, the bent copper aside, the speeding defence will rely on the OP telling us how far after the obscured 30 sign and also from the first lamppost he was at the point he was 'pinged', (the is the BiB's location minus the range he was pinged at).

Simon
DieselMoment
Beanie

I wish you all the best on Tuesday, but I feel you could have done more to determine whether the speed limited section was legally designated. As I said to you before, during preparations for my own case (which I won) it came to light that speed limit repeaters are not lawful where the road is a "restricted road" having street lamps at intervals of 200 yards. I feel that if they ARE present, the speed limit may be unenforceable. You would need to use this site to find that out for sure.

As for whether the magistrates believe you when you tell them the date on which you took the pictures, I see no problem at all. That certainly was not an issue in my case. I was not called upon to prove when I took mine, but in any case the date they were produced was printed on the back of each photo. On the advice of a solicitor, I had sent copies of ALL my pictures to the police - photos of every speed limit sign along the route. I don't know what happened in the police "summons production team" that day - whether the attached photo had any bearing upon the case - but when the charge was actually brought, they'd changed from prosecuting me on the basis of speed limit signs to charging me with exceeding 30 on a "restricted road", and claimed that the speed limit was denoted by street lamps - a complete fabrication, as there are no street lamps at all. Hehe, it only took me about 5 minutes to demolish their case!

Here's the picture of the terminal 30 signs where I got done. I think your photos are better. I think the cop is being a bit of a knobhead to claim that he goes round doing his own pruning. What does he have - a Black and Decker hedge trimmer in the back of the van, together with a Honda generator?


Beanie
I'd just like to take a moment to thank you all again for your opinions on this thread, and clearing up some points that would have made me look stupid in court wink.gif

As this isn't really a black and white case with any clearly unlawful items, I will be positioning my defence around the opportunity given to view the terminal signs following the corner (based on national speed limit = 26.8224 meters per second) giving roughly 1 second to see the obscured sign and make a judgement. I have taken various photographs, from various distances of the signs. I will have the cameraphone in court if they wish to prove the authenticity.

Secondly, I have taken pictures of every "street lamp" prior to the BiB location to show to the court how difficult it is to identify a system of street lighting when every lamp is different/set back from the road (can post pictures if it will add value to this post?). There are no speed limit repeaters, so I can't play that card...

Thirdly, if given the opportunity, I will test the officers memory (as his statement was dated 2nd November - some 6 months after the event) by asking if he remembers a villager leaving his location moments before I was stopped. A silver Volvo V70 estate with registration C* *** flashed me to warn of the speed camera. Again, difficult to prove, and I want to avoid appearing like I am trying to discredit a police officer - as I would lose every time.

I will ask what tools he carries to his roadside horticulture, if only to post the results back on here!

Hopefully sainity will prevail and they will drop this stupid charge due to lack of prosecution evidence (they haven't been prepared on the last three court attendances). At the last hearing, the officers diary showed "leave" or something similar booked for this week and the week of the trial - but they booked it anyway, so hopefully he will be a no-show...

Paul wink.gif

The Rookie
Please remember that as a system of lighting can denote the 30 limit regardless of the signing, unless you can show there is NOT a system of liughting you will have to plead guilty and go for 'special reasons not to endorse' the Officer can't and won't be expected to remember that one car leaving, so asking is a totally pointless exercise IMHO, stick to relevances!

Simon
Beanie
Hi all

Just to let you all know, this case is now closed - I was found guilty. Three points and £400 fine (inc costs).

Thank you all for your help and advice, it really helped me to talk confidently in court about this - in the end though, the court found that the unobscured sign along with street lighting system was sufficient to enforce the 30mph limit.

I achieved what I wanted to achieve, tested the system - and found that police really will lie under oath just to get a conviction. Never mind, got to play the game, wasted almost an entire day of his and the courts time - more burden on the taxpayers of the UK, sorry!

To anyone who cares, I really did take those pictures the day after the event - oh, and apparently Thames Valley Police Force provide loppers and shears to each unit. Well there you go, learn something new every day - the boys in blue have green fingers!

Paul wink.gif
bama
you had evidence the BiB was lying and still got convicted...
what a system...

well done on fighting it though.
DieselMoment
Hi Beanie,

I'm sorry it didn't go your way. You could appeal, but maybe you won't want to. I read in one of the success stories on this site that a 30 limit was unenforceable because the sign had a black border instead of a red one. So an obscured sign should certainly have been taken into account.
QUOTE (Beanie @ Tue, 20 Nov 2007 - 15:56) *
I achieved what I wanted to achieve, tested the system - and found that police really will lie under oath just to get a conviction.
A year ago, I would have been mortified to read this. Unfortunately, this was my experience in my own case. There was no street lighting, but the police claimed that there was, and that the speed limit was denoted by it! This was wrong on both counts. It was speed limit signs obscured by foliage. What made it worse was that I was told that this "small error" was not enough to sink the case! I still won though.

So there we have it. You or I could face jail for lying, for example, about who was driving, but the police can lie, and when found out they can dismiss it as a "small mistake". And that's what sucks.

The other thing is that innocent motorists are cajoled into pleading guilty - accepting a few points and paying a £60 fine - for no other reason that they simply do not have the resources to risk being found guilty and having to pay a £400 fine.
wolfie
QUOTE (Beanie @ Tue, 20 Nov 2007 - 15:56) *
To anyone who cares, I really did take those pictures the day after the event - oh, and apparently Thames Valley Police Force provide loppers and shears to each unit. Well there you go, learn something new every day - the boys in blue have green fingers!


Sorry to hear the news, and about the fine! Nasty.

I'd still get someone to write to TVP suggesting that pruning shears are issued to all police, so that signs can be kept visible and enforceable. Make out to be a good citizen - I can't see that they'll link the letter with the case.

Maybe find a copper's blog that doesn't like perjury and see if he/she will enquire for you.

Get TVP to explain to you exactly why they don't issue pruning shears, and then you can get him arrested. I just can't believe that they do.
Beanie
QUOTE (DieselMoment @ Tue, 20 Nov 2007 - 18:27) *
So there we have it. You or I could face jail for lying, for example, about who was driving, but the police can lie, and when found out they can dismiss it as a "small mistake". And that's what sucks.
On more than one occasion in court I had to correct the police officers account of the facts, and when I did, all I got was a shrug of the shoulders and a lame apology that he wasn't sure, or words to that effect. I'm sure if I was liberal with the truth, they would have checked and come down on me like a ton of bricks!

QUOTE (wolfie @ Tue, 20 Nov 2007 - 19:04) *
Get TVP to explain to you exactly why they don't issue pruning shears, and then you can get him arrested. I just can't believe that they do.
I will write up a letter - as like you, I find it hard to believe that they have room to carry all this random crap, and what I would consider to be a potentially offensive weapon in the wrong hands!

In summary
A great deal of attention was drawn to discrediting my photographs. In particular mistrust of the digital format, and the fact that my pictures were closer to the left hand side of the carraigeway (despite being on a left hand bend). I would recommend that anyone wishing to contend a speeding ticket make sure they stand in a position as they would see from the driving seat, and NOT use a digital camera - I wish I'd just bought a traditional disposable camera.

I won't appeal, as I believe on the day I presented my case as best I could - and it still did not go in my favour. They all read from books and don't "know" the law. Its clear who benefits from the fines payouts in this country. I'm sick of the whole system and the way you are treated as guilty until proven innocent, and that police are higher beings than us mortals, so I don't fancy wasting any more of my days sitting around in court rooms - lifes too short!

At the end of the day, you win some - you lose some. If a mere 10mph over the limit is the best they can pin on me, then I take my hat off to them. I'm no angel, I have a 3ltr twin turbo in the garage tongue.gif
jdfi
Well done for trying mate, at least you stood up to be counted, and didn't blindly accept the conditional offer like many would have.
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