Help - Search - Members - Calendar
Full Version: 109mph On M4
FightBack Forums > Queries > Speeding and other Criminal Offences
Gerbil007
Oh dear, it's been a bad old night.
I've just been stopped by a marked car on the M4 between J16 and J17 At approx 01.35am. I was on my Motorbike heading home from work and due to the fact that it was bit chilly, as well as the road being virtually empty, I opened the taps a little...
When I saw the blue lights, my speedo was reading about 100mph, perhaps slightly under. I pulled over, took off my helmet and gloves and the first thing I said to the officer was, "I know why you've stopped me." He asked why and I said, "Speeding." At this point I was asked to have a seat in the back of the car. The officer in the driving seat then asked me how fast I thought I was going and I replied, sounding as apologetic and fearful as possible, "Probably around a ton." He informed me that they had clocked me doing 109mph at J16 and showed me a readout with this figure on a screen. He asked me if I had anything to say in my defense and I replied that i thought my actions "indefensible", which he wrote down in a notebook. I asked if it would mean a ban and he told me that it probably would. He told me that he was reporting me for excessive speed and took all my details, before lecturing me on possible consequences of speed etc. I said how sorry I was and told him that I'm a serviceman in the RAF and that I live 50 miles from my base, which would mean a ban would cause me absolute chaos and he told me that that wasn't a matter for him, but for my mitigation in court. He also took my service number.
I already have six points from two previous SP30s, so i can't see the magistrates being too lenient, however I was wondering if anyone can offer any advice on how to minimise the damage? If I do manage to get away with a short ban (Which I could just about live with.), would my license come back with no points on it after the ban was served?
I'm gutted, because I'm saving for a wedding and this affects my fiance just as much as me. It could also seriously screw up my career

andy_foster
A ban of 56 days or longer wipes the points off your licence, but you need to re-apply for it (don't need to retake any tests though).
southpaw82
I know you'll do this but don't forget to inform your chain of command. You may face some administrative action from the Service and there's no excuse to give them more reason to stick stuff on you.

For the Army the admin action would be under AGAI 67 and can involve removal of relevant MOD driving permits.

Did the Service do anything in relation to your last two speeding offences?
Gerbil007
I will be speaking to my boss later Southpaw, thanks. The service haven't bothered with any action re. my other points, but I'd think a court appearance may spur them into it! I haven't slept a wink and can't see how I'm going to for the foreseeable future.
southpaw82
You could always drop in on/call RAF Legal Services. If you're stressing then a chat with the welfare bods or padre might help put your mind at rest.

You can ask the court to impose a short ban on you in lieu of points. This would disqualify you from driving for the duration of the ban but if the ban is less than 56 days your 6 points will stay on it. I appreciate that you live 50 miles from your station but is there any way you could cope with a short term ban? Perhaps temporary accommodation on station, if possible (not knowing where you're stationed or your rank - no need to tell me)?

It is within the court's discretion to award a short ban instead of points and this might be a preferable option for you if you can put up with it for the duration. Certainly better than a 6 month totting ban.

Anyone else have any thoughts?
andy_foster
QUOTE (andy_foster @ Wed, 23 Apr 2008 - 05:41) *
A ban of 56 days or longer wipes the points off your licence, but you need to re-apply for it (don't need to retake any tests though).


It has been suggested that I may have been perpetuating an urban myth. The person who made that suggestion seems to have a point. blush.gif
Gerbil007
I'm a SAC based at Brize southpaw. Had a good old chat with my boss the other night. He's a top bloke and an ex-copper to boot. He's well on-side with me in terms of helping me out, but he is a Flt Lt and would obviously have to accept any 'guidance' from his higher uppers with regard to how the service would approach my case. The station commander could, for instance, want to have an example made of me in order to keep the rest of the troops in line, or could prefer that I keep my license, as I have lots of specialist driving qulaifications that are an asset to the service.
I plan to book myself on one of the police run Bikesafe courses, to demonstrate my desire to change my habits, as well as writing an article for Brize Norton's station magazine. A sort of cautionary tale of how easily your life can be turned upside down by this kind of thing and illustrating the point that speeding just isn't worth the potential impact on your life and career. Obviously I'll have to dress it up with some 'facts and figures' to make it more road safety biased, but how hard can statistics manipulation be? The police and government are doing it all the time!
The other hopes I'm clinging to are that the coppers in the car saw how genuinely terrified and sincerely remorseful I was and just went through the motions to put the fear of god into me. I fear that this is wishful thinking on my part though. Or maybe there could be an anomoly in their evidence which could lead to me wriggling through on a technicality. For instance, I don't think they have video evidence of me, and I have no idea what device they used to record my speed. I'm guessing this is all stuff they will include in the summons?
Anyway, I appreciate the assistance of those 'in the know' and will keep everyone updated on my progress. If anyone is willing to help me with my case, I'd fall over myself to provide you with any detail you think could be relevant.
Although my better half and I have sat down and gone through worse case scenarios and how we'd overcome the obvious difficulties, we're just going to try to get on with life as normal until the brown envelope of fear drops onto the doormat. Then we'll see what we can do in terms of damage limitation.
Thanks
Kev
southpaw82
Kev,

I'd suggest the best thing to do may be to wait and see what, if anything, comes through the post. Once we know what we're dealing with better advice can be given.

Sounds like you'll be ok with the Service, which is a bonus!
Gerbil007
Way back in April, I posted on here with regard to having been stopped on the M4 by the police. They were on the entry slip at J16 Westbound and got me doing 109mph.
Obviously I've been agonising over it since then and today, the summons finally dropped through the letterbox. I've never done the NIP wizard as it was a verbal NIP at the roadside, but I'd like to go through what I've received to canvass opinion of my course of action, though I will of course be consulting with a solicitor asap.
First, some background about me:
I'm a 25 year old bloke in the RAF. I live 44 miles away from my work and commute daily. On the night in question, I was on my way home from work after having been let off early. I was knackered. I already have two previous SP30 convictions totalling 6 points on my license. The oldest one will expire 18/04/09. I'm a good bloke. I've never had my collar felt for anything other than speeding. If convicted, disciplinary action will also be taken against me by the RAF and it will have consequences for my career.
Anyway, onwards to what I've received:
In the pack up is a letter stating that a court hearing is scheduled for August in Swindon. It states that I must reply within 7 days if I want the witness who has written a statement, to attend court to give oral evidence as opposed to just having the witness statement read to the court.
Next comes the witness statement which reads:
'I am a police constable in the Wiltshire police, currently stationed with the central roads policing unit at Chippenham police station. At 0157 hours on Wednesday 23rd April 2008 I was on duty in a marked patrol vehicle in company with PC 1663 Fairbairn conducting a speed check on the M4 westbound from the entry slip at J16. I was the driver and PC Fairbairn was operating the SL 700 speed device. At this time I saw a motorcycle, which I now know to be a Suzuki Bandit GSF 1200 index WV07 ***, go past us. (Note: I don't think it's relevant, but the bike is actually a GSF 1250 bandit!) I immediately formed the opinion that it was travelling far in excess of the 70mph speed limit. PC Fairbairn told me he had checked the speed of the motorcycle at 109mph. I then moved off in order to stop the vehicle. The motorcycle continued to travel at speed and I eventually stopped it one mile prior to junction 17. As I approached the rider he stated, "I KNOW WHY YOU'VE STOPPED ME" The rider identified himself as Kevin Speight, born **/**/1982 of ** ****** ****, Pewsham, Chippenham, SN** ***. I gave him a verbal notice of intended prosecution to which he replied, "IT'S INDEFENSIBLE" At 0615 hours the same day I checked the range alignment calibration on the machine used to check the motorcycle and found it to be working correctly.

Next comes the summons info, Plea form, Mitigation form and statement of means. It basically says that if i plead guilty early, they will discount the sentence. I could plead guilty by post, but if the magistrates are considering a ban, I'll have to attend at a later date.

This is all they've given me. What do you think I should do? Guilty by post? Go to court? Hire a solicitor?
I'm pretty much resigned to getting a ban, but need it to be as short as humanly possible.
Thankyou for taking the time to read this and for any help you may be able to offer.
The Rookie
Well clearly there is no admissable evidence there as to your actual speed, his evidence you were over the limit is admissibale but theer is no corroboration of the exact speed other than hearsay!

Pleading guilty earlier reduces the financial penalty.

It may be worth considering entering a 'Newton plea' by pleading guilty and only contesting the facts of the case, admit to say 100mph (where you may just escape a ban), the problem is that even at 100mph and no ban, 6 points would be a totting ban! (just to confirm what is the offence date for the first SP30?).

You ideally want to attend, suited a booted (in uniform may be a good idea!), pleading guilty and admitting your stupidity and falling on your sword to a greater or lesser extent!

Simon
Gerbil007
This goes back to a post I made way back in April. Hopefully the mods can dredge it back up here somehow!
Well, I had my day in court on the 7th Aug (Been on hols since then, hence the late update!) and feel like I got an extremely good result. I was sitting on six points and thought there was a very good chance of another six to make up the 12 points and a six month totting up ban.
With an oscar winning mitigation and my boss (Ex civvy copper, now RAF Flt Lt) writing me an amazing character reference, I walked out with a 28 day ban and £350 lighter in the pocket.
I was honest and contrite, but carefully worded my mitigation without over-egging it too much. On the advice of a solicitor, I represented myself. (Incredible eh? A less scrupulous solicitor was trying to convince me to part with thousands for his services!)
If you'd like, I could post the mitigation here. It may help others.
Many thanks to everyone who's offered advice, not just to me, but to others from whom I borrowed information.

Barking Mad
Gerbil,

If you were riding the bike like a maniac - then you deserved what you got.

However, if you were just riding the bike "quickly" on an empty motorway (and I suspect you almost certainly were), then, quite simply, you have been fleeced.

In such circumstances, you have my sympathies.

Don't forget to use your vote to remove those who abuse their position at the Department of Transport - No longer than 21 months now and counting down.

bargepole
QUOTE (Barking Mad @ Wed, 27 Aug 2008 - 00:19) *
Don't forget to use your vote to remove those who abuse their position at the Department of Transport - No longer than 21 months now and counting down.

If you really think this abuse of power will cease after the next election, whichever of the main parties is in power, then you are living up to your username, I'm afraid.
cjard
If you could wangle a quick bit of intensive flight training, you can always take a microlight to work and back.. Might just be better to car share or pay a student to taxi you round for a month though..

This is a "lo-fi" version of our main content. To view the full version with more information, formatting and images, please click here.
Invision Power Board © 2001-2019 Invision Power Services, Inc.