Q&A - Being Paced by Police in Front of Me

Q&A ImageI was driving behind the RCMP Freeway Patrol officer, not realizing we were both driving the same speed (distance of my car and his car were constant) and also didn't realise he was a police officer as it was an unmarked vehicle. As soon as I realised he speeds up,  I continue at my speed and then he slows down to about 70KM/H and I slow down to 80KM/H and pass him on the left.

He pulls me over and says I was going an excessive speed of 120 KMH in a 80 Zone on HWY 1. He impounded my vehicle for 7 days, and charged me with excessive speeding.

I have disputed this ticket, but i'm quite worried. Does he actually have a radar at the back of his cruiser?

How will he tell the judge I was speeding? I never sped in front of him. I thought I was going with flow of traffic. 

How do I go about this? honestly, the average speed on HWY 1 right now is a 110KM/H.

Why was the officer speeding with no emergency lights on? I know he's an officer but he should set an example.

Since I disputed it, and I will plead not guilty when the time comes, what will happen if the judge decides im guilty? Will he just let me pay the ticket or will he suspend my license because he has the power to?

Im just stressing about about this. If I was going 120 KMH thats stupid of me, but I dont recall going 120. Any suggestion here?  I never put the public or anyone in Danger, and he only charged me with |Excessive speed Over 40KMH. Any input on this would be great.

The last thing I want is go to court, the judge say im guility, and then on top of that suspend me.

Comments

Answer

The officer is allowed to exceed the speed limit without using emergency equipment in order to pace your vehicle and judge your speed.

Exemption for emergency vehicles

122  (1) Despite anything in this Part, but subject to subsections (2) and (4), a driver of an emergency vehicle may do the following:

(a) exceed the speed limit;

(b) proceed past a red traffic control signal or stop sign without stopping;

(c) disregard rules and traffic control devices governing direction of movement or turning in specified directions;

(d) stop or stand.

(2) The driver of an emergency vehicle must not exercise the privileges granted by subsection (1) except in accordance with the regulations.

(3) [Repealed 1997-30-2.]

(4) The driver of an emergency vehicle exercising a privilege granted by subsection (1) must drive with due regard for safety, having regard to all the circumstances of the case, including the following:

(a) the nature, condition and use of the highway;

(b) the amount of traffic that is on, or might reasonably be expected to be on, the highway;

(c) the nature of the use being made of the emergency vehicle at the time.

Yes, most traffic enforcement vehicles are equipped with moving radar that has an antenna in the back window to measure the speed of vehicles overtaking from and receeding in that direction.

I don't know how he will tell the judge that you were speeding, but if you request disclosure you will find out.

The Lemming Defence (everyone else was doing it) is not a valid defence in traffic court.

If the judge decides that you are guilty after your trial a penalty will be imposed. This is usually the fine shown on the ticket in the case of speeding if it was written for the correct penalty for the speed you were traveling. The Motor Vehicle Act removes the court's discretion with speeding fines:

Fines for speeding offences

148.1  (1) In relation to a contravention of section 140, 146 (1), (3), (5) or (7), 147 or 148 (1), the Lieutenant Governor in Council may prescribe

(a) a fine amount, and

(b) a supplemental fine amount.

(2) Without limiting subsection (1), the Lieutenant Governor in Council may prescribe

(a) different fine amounts for the different contraventions referred to in subsection (1), and

(b) supplemental fine amounts that vary in relation to the degree by which a person, in committing the offence, exceeds, by a prescribed rate of speed, the applicable speed limit established under section 140, 146 (1), (3), (5) or (7), 147 or 148 (1), as the case may be.

(3) A person who contravenes section 140, 146 (1), (3), (5) or (7), 147 or 148 (1) is liable on conviction to a minimum fine of not less than the aggregate of

(a) the fine amount prescribed in relation to the contravention, and

(b) the supplemental fine amount, if any, prescribed in relation to, and applicable to the degree of, the contravention.

(4) If, by means of a violation ticket defined in section 1 of the Offence Act, a person is charged with an offence under section 140, 146 (1), (3), (5) or (7), 147 or 148 (1) of this Act and the evidence proves the offence but to a different degree than that reflected by the supplemental fine amount included in the ticketed amount, as that term is defined in section 1 of the Offence Act,

(a) the person may be convicted of the offence, and

(b) the supplemental fine amount may be varied in accordance with the amount prescribed under subsection (2) (b) to reflect the degree by which the person exceeded the applicable speed limit.

(5) The owner of a motor vehicle who is liable under section 83.1 (2) for a contravention referred to in subsection (1) of this section is liable on conviction to a minimum fine of not less than the aggregate of

(a) the fine amount prescribed in relation to the contravention, and

(b) the supplemental fine amount, if any, prescribed in relation to, and applicable to the degree of, the contravention.

(6) If a violation ticket, defined in section 1 of the Offence Act, is issued to an owner of a motor vehicle in respect of an offence under section 83.1 (2) of this Act and the evidence proves the contravention of section 140, 146 (1), (3), (5) or (7), 147 or 148 (1), as the case may be, but to a different degree than that reflected by the supplemental fine amount included in the ticketed amount, as that term is defined in section 1 of the Offence Act,

(a) the owner may be convicted, and

(b) the supplemental fine amount may be varied in accordance with the amount prescribed under subsection (2) (b) to reflect the degree by which the applicable speed limit was exceeded.

Traffic court judges rarely prohibit drivers. The standard line seems to be "The Superintendent will deal with that issue." It is possible, but for some reason there is a reluctance to exercise that power.

It's very hard to have a suggestion if you don't know how fast you were driving other than perhaps in the future you should try and be more aware of your speed. The justice is not going to pay much attention to "I don't think I was going that fast" at the hearing. What they would pay attention to is something like "The officer was mistaken your worship. I was never traveling faster than 80 km/h and I've had my speedometer tested since the incident and it is reading correctly."

***UPDATE**

 I just requested Disclosure and this is the outcome:

 The officer said i was PACING with his police vehicle on the highway at 125 KM an hour. He said we were both initially going 100KM/H and then ended up at 125 in that 80 zone. He also mentioned I was tailing him, which I was absolutely not. there was more than a 5 second difference between my vehicle and his. He also mentioned in the DISCLOSURE that his RAPTOR RP Radar was "not reading". he then said he de-accesseratred to 50 KMH to let me pass. Keep in mind, I passed him at 80 KM/H.  

 

What are my chances for this ticket?

Gap

If the gap is 5 seconds long and doesn't change, it means that your speed is the same as his, you following him or him following you makes no difference.

Also, if his vehicle is moving at the same speed as yours, it does not surprise me that the radar would not read your speed. It always worked better for me when there was a speed differential. I never did use a Raptor though so I can't comment on how it might behave.

You are guilty for just 1

You are guilty for just 1 km/hr over the speed limit regardless of whatever everyone else is doing including the officer. Now there is a chance the officer might not show up and then you could plead not guilty but its very very rare.

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