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What's wrong with the Provincial Offense Court system

Old 26-Feb-2010, 10:57 AM
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KiX
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What's wrong with the Provincial Offense Court system

Now I'm not against people in Law inforcement, and althought most of this may be obvious, there's no harm in having a discussion about it. The Ontario Justice system is purposely setup to generate revenue, and inconvenience citizens who want to dispute or make answer to a charge..which results in them, not willing to spend the time to prove their innocence (that is it they are..).

The government has invested a lot of money in technology to grab cash from people, but have done nothing to help innocent people make full answer to any charge. You can pay all of your parking tickets, speeding tickets or any other infractions online at, how convenient (minus the extra charges that they add on for the service). But how come you can't request a trial date to dispute the charge online? Why can't the prosecutors office make it easier for defendents to request disclosure or certain documents that are vital to proving one's guilt?

I've seen no progress in terms of helping those who are "innocent until proven guilty" make full answer to any charges. All I see are huge line ups outside a Provincial offense office full of people wanting to set a trial date. The Provincial Offense office is always bottle-necked, and Prosecutors are already up to their eyeballs in people wanting to meet them in court to dispute a charge.

Having said that, typically people go to court to dispute charges, most walk in and settle for a plea bargain deal that the prosecutor offers them (not news to anyone on here). Seeing people come in and out like hens at a slaughter house, some of the people might actually be innocent and yet, they have no knowledge of their rights, and their fear of the whole court system results in them settling for a plea bargain deal.

Not everyone is in position to pay large sums of money hire a paralegal or lawyer to defend them, and the prosecutors, JP, officers know that. I have never seen a JP stand up for the rights of an individual who has absolutely no idea what their rights are, or how to defend themself in court.

It goes without saying.. You only have rights, if you know what they are. It's just my opinion
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Old 26-Feb-2010, 07:51 PM
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Tell me about the line ups. gave up and just payed the ticket since i would have had to skip out on work and would have lost more money...
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Old 26-Feb-2010, 08:24 PM
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A well-written first post. Welcome to TCC.
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Old 27-Feb-2010, 01:33 AM
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Thanks.

I'm sure anyone whose viewing this particular section has seen how the court process goes.. but for anyone who hasn't been to court or has only been once.. this is what you'll expect as a regular process that courts go through.

The private meeting rooms located outside courtrooms are also a place where prosecutors meet with defendents to discuss plea bargains, but most of all, to intimidate them so they will plead guilty to save the court some time. Sure it saves the court time, and lets the prosecutor go off to lunch early, but that's not the point of setting a trial date, the point is to dispute and to make full answer to a charge.

The way it's setup is basically, you're guilty until proven innocent. Constables should be required to prove without a shadow of doubt, that the accused did commit the offense that they're faced with.

Just thought I'd ****** the word, and perhaps people who have their experiences or expertise to add to this discussion.
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Old 27-Feb-2010, 10:44 AM
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one think i did not like in the court room proccess is that you have like 30-40 people in the same court room . For a lot of people that alone is intimidating. I spoke to a lady (friend of ours) that told me she had a disease which caused her a ticket but she was too embarress to disclose it in front of the whole court room because of that she ended paying for the whole ticket itself.

When i went there the samething , all the people would just set up for a bargain instead of fighting for their rights. I m 100% sure that half of them felt intimidating by the amount of people in the court room.

Now not everyone is innocent but i see where you are going with thi
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Old 28-Feb-2010, 11:48 PM
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Originally Posted by rick10 View Post
one think i did not like in the court room proccess is that you have like 30-40 people in the same court room . For a lot of people that alone is intimidating. I spoke to a lady (friend of ours) that told me she had a disease which caused her a ticket but she was too embarress to disclose it in front of the whole court room because of that she ended paying for the whole ticket itself.
Unless there is compelling reason not to, the hallmark of our justice system is that our trials are open to public observation and scrutiny. That provides public oversight to the trial process.

Or would you rather that trials be held in secret in some back room with only the accused in attendance?

If your lady friend had a medical condition that resulted in a ticket, embarrassment at revealing it to open court is the least of her worries. A medical condition that has potential to affect driving ability is grounds for an administrative license suspension until such time that she can be medically signed off as being fit to drive.

Originally Posted by rick10 View Post
When i went there the samething , all the people would just set up for a bargain instead of fighting for their rights. I m 100% sure that half of them felt intimidating by the amount of people in the court room.

Now not everyone is innocent but i see where you are going with thi
Now not everyone is innocent? Give your head a shake. The vast majority of people in traffic courts are factually guilty of the offence for which they have been charged, and they know it. Going for a plea bargain to cut their losses is just as much their right as is going to trial and potentially facing a much larger penalty on conviction.
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Old 02-Mar-2010, 02:32 PM
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That's correct, not everyone is innocent, and typically accept the guilty plea for a lesser charge. But that does not excuse the crown and constables of doing a half-*** job gathering disclosure and providing information as well as evidence to the accused. The crown seems to slowly feed you bits and pieces of information in a disclosure package, to test how much of your rights you actually know. The crown provides bits and that won't help you in proving your innocence (that is if you are), but help the prosecution to win the case.

Sure, when the prosecution wins majority of their cases, it helps in gaining points and ultimately may lead to a raise in salary, but if you're intimidating people into admiting their guilty of something their not, is that right? is that moral?

There are good cops and bad cops, those who don't follow procedure in regards to issuing tickets and other offences. Constables have a duty to follow these procedures by the book, if not they shouldn't be issuing tickets.
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