Preparing for Trial? Request Disclosure.
I'm always amazed at the amount of poorly qualified or outright incorrect information on the web when I search for traffic enforcement related information. One popular topic that seems especially mistreated is disclosure of the Crown's evidence prior to trial. The authors of the articles would have you believe that you should ask for everything, including the brand of ink in the officer's pen, and when any of it is refused the ticket will automatically be dismissed.
If you are considering a ticket dispute, you may choose to write to the officer who issued the ticket and request disclosure. Do this at the same time that you enter your dispute so that there is plenty of time for the officer to comply. This way if you have any questions after receiving disclosure you will have time to ask for clarification before the trial date.
If you simply request disclosure, you will receive a synopsis of the evidence that the officer will be presenting during the trial. You may request specific disclosure for information about the officer's qualifications, what kind of speed measuring instrument was used or for a copy of any evidence that will be presented, such as photos, videos or witness statements.
The court will support all reasonably justified requests. Photocopies of copyrighted material such as the radar operation manual will be refused, although you could expect to attend to the detachment and view a copy to make notes from. Copies of all tickets the officer issued that day and the outcome of any trials related to them, servicing records for the police vehicle, reports of all disciplinary actions against the officer or other such requests will likely not be upheld by the court.
With electronic tickets, the officer no longer makes handwritten notes. Rather than a photocopy, a print out of the notes could be requested.
Would you like reliable advice on the preparation of your dispute? Consider the Lawyer Referral Service operated by the Canadian Bar Association. The $25.00 fee may save you frustration and allow you to concentrate on what is pertinent to your defence.