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modafinil
Hi

i recieved a court summons today for speeding doing 60mph in a 40mph zone. 10.25 at night on a 4 lane dualcarriageway. I have no current points on my licence although some from over 5 years ago remain on it.I read the online sollictors wanting to help me contest it but the truth is i was doing 60 although only briefly.

I want to plead guilty by letter as im offered but dont know if i should write a letter of mitigation? pay a sollicitor to do one ? and i am worried athas any solid advice as im the range of points and fines that seem available ? up to 1000 pounds and 6 points or possibly suspension of licence.

I am aware this probably sounds lame i just wonder if anyone can give me solid advice on my best course of action?

im in scotland incase that makes a difference
The Rookie
How were you caught? why were you not offered the fixed penalty that would be usual for that speed?

Plead guilty, write a letter of mitigation, request that the punishment be the same as the fixed penalty you would normally have been offered at that speed (3pts, £60 fine)

Simon
modafinil
Hi Simon

I was told that it was over the limit where a fixed penalty could be issued as 59 is the cut off in a 40.
The Rookie
Most forces over a fixed penalty for upto 65 in a 40 following the guidelines from SACPO (Scottish equivalent of ACPO, think it's called that), it is actually the the officers discretion, legally he can offer them for any speed he wants to.

So how were you caught? Car, camera, stationary officer flagged you down, what device etc etc etc?

Simon
modafinil
Hi Simon,

car with officer standing at the side of it using a handheld unipar SL700 ...if he could have issued a fixed penalty he obviously chose not to!
henrik777
Officer in Cumbernauld court stated upto 59mph in a forty to offer a fixed penalty.

You will either get 4 or 5 points and a fine which will be discounted if you plead guilty early (at the pleading diet). I would consider you unlucky to end up with more than 3 points if you pled guilty as stated, but certainly no more than 4.
modafinil
thankyou for advice posted so far..much appreciated.

any advice on whether i should pay for a sollicitor or online service to write a letter of mitigation? or write one myself ?
mrh3369
Write it yourself, you will get good advice on here on how to, before you send it post it on here for the good folk to view just to be sure it's on the money.
20372
QUOTE (modafinil @ Fri, 9 Mar 2012 - 16:37) *
Hi Simon

I was told that it was over the limit where a fixed penalty could be issued as 59 is the cut off in a 40.



This is consistent with the instructions we have.
reabers
Not sure about your circumstances and though it may not be required, would you not consider appearing in court in person? They tend to look more favourably on people who make the effort to travel to court, express genuine remorse and offer a sincere reflection as well as an insight into how you plan to modify your driving in the future to comply with the code.

I speak from experience having been nabbed doing 105 in a 70. I treated the coppers with the utmost of respect and was very polite - that saw two of the three charges dropped at the roadside plus they ignored the fact that I must have been doing closer to 130 before they started measuring my speed (empty road meant they took time setting up). I made the 200 mile round trip to court by train/taxi/bus, ate humble pie at the first opportunity, grovelled intelligently and swore that I would exorcise the speeding demon. Walked away with no points, £300 fine and 7 day ban. I now drive at posted speed limit +/- 10% because my insurance went up by £50/yr and petrol by £120.
modafinil
If i appear in person should i write a letter of mitgation as well? It wont be a problem to appear as i work close to the court its being heard in anyway.

any advice?


thanks so much for advice posted already it has helped a lot!
The Rookie
Even if you intend to appear, always worth writing one and sending it in just in case something happens....

Simon
sgtdixie
It also means you don't forget any salient points. Just don't be tempted to simply read it out. Looks bad and sounds insincere.
modafinil

I have posted a rough draft of my letter of mitigation.Please feel free to post helpful comments criticisms, I am not sure if its enough or too much ?

Any help sincerely appreciated.


Dear Sirs,
Firstly let me sincerely apologise for wasting the Court’s time. I am deeply embarrassed and ashamed of my behaviour on the 29th of February this year on which I was speeding at the speed of 60mph on the A92 Dual Carriage way between the Clay Potts roundabout and the Bell Tree Restaurant. This is a 40 mph zone.
As you can see from my licence it is clean and I have had a history of good driving since I qualified nearly 22 years ago. At the time in question I was on my way home from work, it was after 10pm at night and the road was empty of other traffic. I do not offer this as an excuse only as context for what transpired.
I am now glad that I was stopped and cautioned. It has been a very sobering experience for me and I have been very aware of my speed and will continue to be as vigilant as I have demonstrated in the past. The officers in question did an excellent job of highlighting the dangers of my speed, and I was dealt with in an extremely professional manner despite the fact I had clearly broken the law.

I accept that the Court have the power to apply the penalty at your discretion and I ask for leniency due to my good driving record and the fact I have plead guilty at the earliest opportunity. I can assure you that I have and will continue to drive in the way my driving record demonstrates. I respectfully ask that this momentary lapse of judgment be punished as just that
Let me apologise once again for taking up the Courts time today.
henrik777
I'm not expert on mitigation.

Claypotts isn't a roundabout, it's a Junction.

Just for interest can you tell me the name of the TRO should be on your paperwork after "contrary to the"

A colleague of mine got 5 points last year for 64mph but this was before you got a discount for an early guilty plea- Gemmell

Disqualification from driving and penalty points
[69] These disposals, in my opinion, constitute a sentence and come within the express wording of section 196.

Disqualification from driving
[70] In my opinion, a period of disqualification from driving is a penalty (cf Adair v Munn 1940 JC 69). As such it is a "sentence ... or other disposal or order." However, in the case of a disqualification, any discount granted cannot take the period of disqualification below the statutory minimum. The absence of an enabling provision such as is contained in section 196(2) of the 1995 Act (supra) indicates that this result was intended by the Parliament, whether it was to protect the public or to punish the offender.

Penalty points
[71] For the same reasons, I consider that sentence discounting applies also to the imposition of penalty points for road traffic offences. The question was considered by a court of two judges in Stewart v Griffiths (2005 SCCR 291). In an extempore judgment that runs to 18 lines in the law report, the court held that penalty points were not like a financial penalty. They were in the nature of a warning to the accused as to his future driving. For that reason the court refused to reduce the number of penalty points imposed. The relevant authorities on the point were not cited to the court.
[72] In Tudhope v Eadie (1984 JC 6) a Full Bench decided that the imposition of penalty points was a penalty in itself (cf Coogans v MacDonald 1954 JC 98, Lord Justice-General Cooper at p 104). The imposition of penalty points is a form of order that falls within the ambit of section 196. The Strasbourg jurisprudence is to the same effect (Malige v France (1999) 28 EHRR 578). In my opinion, Stewart v Griffiths was wrongly decided and should be over-ruled.



If they don't give you a discount ask for it.
AFCNEAL
Hope this helps (in brackets):

Firstly let me sincerely apologise for wasting the Court’s time. I am deeply embarrassed and ashamed of my behaviour on the 29th of February this year on which I was speeding at the speed of 60mph (why confirm that?) on the A92 Dual Carriage way between the Clay Potts roundabout and the Bell Tree Restaurant. This is a 40 mph zone (begs the question - did you know that at the time?).
As you can see from my licence it is clean (colloquial?) and I have had a history of good driving since I qualified nearly 22 years ago. At the time in question I was on my way home from work, it was after 10pm at night and the road was empty of other traffic. I do not offer this as an excuse only as context for what transpired.
I am now glad that I was stopped and cautioned (vomit....totally untrue!). It (what?) has been a very sobering experience for me and I have been very aware of my speed (clearly not) and will continue to be as vigilant as I have demonstrated in the past. The officers in question did an excellent job of highlighting the dangers of my speed, and I was dealt with in an extremely professional manner despite the fact I had clearly broken the law (relevance?).

I accept that the Court have the power to apply the penalty at your discretion and I ask for leniency due to my good driving record and the fact I have plead guilty at the earliest opportunity. I can assure you that I have and will continue to drive in the way my driving record demonstrates. I respectfully ask that this momentary lapse of judgment be punished as just that
Let me apologise once again for taking up the Courts time today.

My version:

Firstly let me sincerely apologise for taking up the Court’s time. I am embarrassed and ashamed of the events of 29th of February this year on when I was driving above the posted limit on the A92 Dual Carriage way between the Clay Potts roundabout and the Bell Tree Restaurant.

As you can see from my driving record hereto is impeccable since qualifying nearly 22 years ago. At the time in question I was on my way home from work, it was late evening and the road was empty of other traffic. I do not offer this as an excuse only as context for my transgression. The consequence of my actions has very sobering experience for me and I have since been very aware of my speed and increased my vigilance of the posted limits as I had previously demonstrated.

I respect the Court's power to apply any appropriate penalty at your discretion but I ask for leniency due to my previous driving record and the fact I have plead guilty at the earliest opportunity. I can assure you that I have and will continue to drive in the way my previous driving record demonstrated. I respectfully ask that this momentary lapse of judgment be punished as just that
Let me apologise once again for taking up the Courts time today.

I'm not in the expert category on here, so let others comment first please!!
modafinil
Hi Henrik


good spot its a long time since its been a roundabout! thanks
and the TRO is Dundee City Council (40mph speed limits) Order 2007 and the road traffic regulation act 1984 sections 84 and 89

did your colleague get a large fine as well ?

thanks




QUOTE (henrik777 @ Fri, 23 Mar 2012 - 12:37) *
Gemmell[/url]

Disqualification from driving and penalty points
[69] These disposals, in my opinion, constitute a sentence and come within the express wording of section 196.

Disqualification from driving
[70] In my opinion, a period of disqualification from driving is a penalty (cf Adair v Munn 1940 JC 69). As such it is a "sentence ... or other disposal or order." However, in the case of a disqualification, any discount granted cannot take the period of disqualification below the statutory minimum. The absence of an enabling provision such as is contained in section 196(2) of the 1995 Act (supra) indicates that this result was intended by the Parliament, whether it was to protect the public or to punish the offender.

Penalty points
[71] For the same reasons, I consider that sentence discounting applies also to the imposition of penalty points for road traffic offences. The question was considered by a court of two judges in Stewart v Griffiths (2005 SCCR 291). In an extempore judgment that runs to 18 lines in the law report, the court held that penalty points were not like a financial penalty. They were in the nature of a warning to the accused as to his future driving. For that reason the court refused to reduce the number of penalty points imposed. The relevant authorities on the point were not cited to the court.
[72] In Tudhope v Eadie (1984 JC 6) a Full Bench decided that the imposition of penalty points was a penalty in itself (cf Coogans v MacDonald 1954 JC 98, Lord Justice-General Cooper at p 104). The imposition of penalty points is a form of order that falls within the ambit of section 196. The Strasbourg jurisprudence is to the same effect (Malige v France (1999) 28 EHRR 578). In my opinion, Stewart v Griffiths was wrongly decided and should be over-ruled.



If they don't give you a discount ask for it.

henrik777
£140 ish iirc.

The road itself is bizarre given it was 60mph before it was upgraded to dual.

QUOTE (modafinil @ Thu, 22 Mar 2012 - 14:42) *
If i appear in person should i write a letter of mitgation as well? It wont be a problem to appear as i work close to the court its being heard in anyway.

any advice?


thanks so much for advice posted already it has helped a lot!



If you go yourself, get there early and speak to the PF and try and get the speed slightly lower which you will plead guilty to. (56/7 perhaps). If you get this your increase your chances of 4 points which would then be discounted to 3points for pleading guilty at the 1st calling of the case.
henrik777
Click to view attachment

That is the TRO which "covers" the road in question.

40mph start

Now the link above is for the Monymusk road end of the 40mph limit. I can't find the junction of Arbroath road and Monymusk road.

Can anyone find it ?
henrik777
QUOTE (henrik777 @ Mon, 26 Mar 2012 - 11:46) *
Click to view attachment

That is the TRO which "covers" the road in question.

40mph start

Now the link above is for the Monymusk road end of the 40mph limit. I can't find the junction of Arbroath road and Monymusk road.

Can anyone find it ?


Quick reply from Dundee council.

Click to view attachment

I have attached an image from our List of Public Roads which shows Monymusk Road as being a footpath. It would appear that at one stage between 1919 and 1939 that the area did exist as a road for a short period of time (perhaps as access to farmland which existed on the area Douglas and Angus now stands), but was not utilised as a 'road' as defined by the Roads (Scotland) Act 1984. As this footpath was named as 'Monymusk Road' from initial construction, it has always kept its original name even though it is a footpath which connects the underpass on A92 (Dundee-Arbroath) from Craigie High School to Monymusk Park.



Any comments ?
The Rookie
It defines a geographical location, that is all that matters.

Simon
modafinil
Court date a week today 1 last piece of advice would be great guys?

the statement of means would show i have a good job and earn 500 per week...it does say on the form that it is optional to complete? would i recieve a lesser fine or will i just hack them off that i havent completed it?


any thoughts very welcome

Gan
If you don't fill it in I think they apply some default numbers but i don't know what they are
The Rookie
They will assume an income fo £350/week if they don't have the details, they can insist on you completing the form (and it's an offence not to) but until they did so I'd be inclined to 'forget' it and hope they proceed using the nominal salary.
Logician
If you are doing this by post, they are very unlikely to chase up a means form if you do not send one in, if you appear in person and have no form you are likely to be asked to complete one in court. The default income is being increased to £400 pw. This is all what happens in England/Wales, Scotland may be different.
dawmdt
QUOTE (Logician @ Thu, 29 Mar 2012 - 13:22) *
The default income is being increased to £400 pw.


From 2nd April, which appears to be before your court date.
RDA
QUOTE (dawmdt @ Thu, 29 Mar 2012 - 13:53) *
QUOTE (Logician @ Thu, 29 Mar 2012 - 13:22) *
The default income is being increased to £400 pw.


From 2nd April, which appears to be before your court date.

The Sentencing Council have instructed courts to implement the new assumed relevant weekly income with immediate effect.
Logician
Yes, a complete mix-up, some are doing it immediately, some from 2nd April and possibly some from 11th June.
modafinil
Hi Guys

well after watching many fancy sollicitors defend their clients i was up and was deferential and apologetic.....and wayhay 3 point 80 pound fine all in all much better than id feared....
thanks again to all who [posted replies your advice helped so much



MODS
Gan
Well done

Pity about a silly limit in the first place
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