Defending against dangerous driving allegation
If you have been involved in an incident where the death of another has been caused then it is vital that you obtain immediate legal advice so that your side of the story is conveyed to the police at an early stage. The defence process needs to be started early on so that you receive good clear legal advice on how to proceed.
In order to prove the offence the prosecution must establish that your driving would have been obviously dangerous to a reasonably competent driver, and that driving was a cause of the death of another person. The driving may be alleged to be dangerous for a variety of reasons including, but not limited to, driving at high speeds, aggressive driving, overtaking where it is illegal to do so, ignoring road signs or traffic markings, driving a vehicle which is not road worthy and driving under the influence of excess alcohol or under the influence of drugs.
The most effective way to defend cases that fall into this category is by putting forward a strong factual defence to establish that you did not drive in the manner alleged by the prosecution. At Stephensons our specialist motoring offences solicitors can help by taking your detailed instructions on what really happened, obtaining witness statements, collating expert reports and carrying out accident and scene reconstructions.
If you face investigation or prosecution for an offence of causing death by dangerous driving the importance of seeking early expert legal advice cannot be overstated.
Our expert solicitors have a proven track record of success in this area and have successfully defended many cases. We have acted for both private individuals and HGV drivers and have widespread experience of analysing prosecution evidence and preparing an effective defence. We also have strong relationships with leading experts in the field of accident reconstruction - this evidence is often a crucial part of any defence.
We can assist you from the very outset of an investigation, by accompanying you to the Police Station for interview, all the way through to conclusion at trial.
Death by careless or inconsiderate driving
The offence of causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving came into force in August 2008. The number of prosecutions being started for causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving is rising sharply and it is clear that the Courts are treating this as a very serious motoring offence. If the matter was to be dealt with in the Crown Court then there is the potential for a maximum sentence of five years custody.
If you have been involved in an incident where the death of another has been caused then it is vital that you obtain immediate legal advice so that your side of the story is conveyed to the Police at an early stage. The defence process needs to be started early on so that you receive good clear legal advice on how to proceed. For free initial advice call our 24/7 helpline 0203 816 9274 or complete our online enquiry form.
Driving mistakes that could lead to a careless driving charge
In order to prove the offence the prosecution must establish that your driving fell below what would be expected of a reasonably competent driver; and that your driving was a cause of the death of another. Any driver could be faced with this offence if prior to an accident you have;
- Failed to comply with a road traffic signal
- Been distracted by a car radio or communication device
- Mis-used a lane or disregarded a priority
- Undertaken other vehicles
- Travelled too closely to another vehicle
Please note that this list is not exhaustive but any of the above features may well be regarded as aggravating the offence and would therefore increase the risk of you being sent to prison.
As with offences of causing death by dangerous driving, these cases are often defended on a factual basis - for example by establishing that you did not drive in the manner alleged by the prosecution. There is often a large evidential difference between what is alleged by the prosecution and what actually happened. This is where the knowledge of an experienced motoring solicitor can be invaluable.
If you face investigation or prosecution for this type of offence the importance of seeking expert advice as soon as possible cannot be overstated. We can assist you from the very outset of an investigation, by accompanying you to the police station for interview, preparing the case and gathering expert evidence to support the defence case and eventually all the way through to conclusion at trial.