Case Study: Failure to Stop & Driving without Due Care and Attention (Pro Bono Case)

This Case Took Place at Birmingham Magistrates Court

To keep our client’s identity confidential, they will be referred to as ‘’Amelia’’ for this case study.

Amelia instructed us after being charged with failure to stop when required to do so by a police constable and driving without due care and attention. Amelia was a young lady who had only passed her driving test six months prior and was highly distressed at the thought of losing her licence. After a long discussion with Amelia’s mother and herself she explained the reasons whilst the offences had been committed.

Amelia had been driving home in the late evening and pitch black, when she noticed a police car following her for a substantial amount of time without its light illuminated. The police car was marked and contained two male officers. Amelia advised us that given the disgraced behaviour of multiple police officers, which has recently filled the news all over the UK , she became extremely concerned for her wellbeing. Amelia’s mobile phone had lost battery and she became increasingly distressed as she was unable to contact anyone for assistance should she need to. After some time, police officers illuminated their blue lights and perused Amelia. In a highly anxious state, Amelia increased her speed and drove to her mother’s house who lived fairly close by, without stopping for officers. Police officers finally caught up with Amelia and proceed to charge her with failure to stop when requested to by a uniformed constable and driving without due care and attention. 

After hearing the circumstances of Amelia’s case, as an all-female team, we wanted to help Amelia and agreed to take on the case Pro Bono ( with no legal fees). 

We began preparing for Amelia’s case by researching the news articles she had referenced of police officers abusing their power, predominately towards women. Unsurprisingly it was not difficult to source news articles of this nature, as this seems to be becoming more and more common. News stories of this nature are extremely prevalent, most notably the cases of Sarah Everard, Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry. With over 1,500 police officers accused of violent offences against women over a period of six months and less than 1% of these officers losing their employment as a consequence, it’s not unsurprising a young woman driving alone in the dark would feel afraid for her safety. We provided Amelia’s barrister with a bundle of related news articles to present to the judges at her hearing. 

We also obtained in-depth mitigation from Amelia, including details of her employment as a health worker and how this would be impacted if she was to lose her licence. Amelia also assisted a number of family members with caregiving, which she would be unable to do without the use of her vehicle. In order to ensure the Judge/s were aware of the implications this would have on others, we obtained multiple character references to present to the court at Amelia’s hearing. 

Amelia advised us she wished to enter a plea of guilty for both offences as she acknowledged her actions were unlawful, but wanted the court to understand the circumstances surrounding the offence being committed. Due to the varying sentencing guidelines for Driving without due care and attention, which can exceed all the way up to a 12 more driving disqualification, this put Amelia at a high risk of having her driving licence revoked. Under the New Drivers Scheme, Amelia could only obtain up to six penalty points on her licence, before she faced revocation.  

We presented the circumstances of Amelia’s case to the court and referenced the vast number of stories in the news, Amelia’s mitigation and her character reference. The Judges were compassionate towards Amelia’s version of events and used their discretion to offer five penalty points in total for both offences and even permitted a minimal fine of £200. 

Amelia was extremely happy with this result and we were very happy to have been able to assist her with this matter.

This case is a good example of the importance of demonstrating the circumstances of your offence adequately to the court. If you find yourself in a similar situation to Amelia, please call one of our motoring experts on 0330 912 2124.

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