Sunday, December 05, 2004

 

Reply After Caution

You remember the days of the great British Police Caution, after arrest (mostly miss-quoted on TV Cop dramas) the formal caution on arrest went like “You are not obliged to say anything, but any thing you do say will be taken down in writing and may be used in evidence”. This tended to be learned parrot fashion at training school, and was given out when muckling on to the toe-rag you happened to be “swifting” in one breath in a sort of monotone. One little scrote always replied to this “I’ll tell you anything you want officer but please stop hitting me”. So I duly wrote this down as his “reply after caution”. For some reason, unfathomable to persons of normal mind he decided to go “not guilty” this time. Strange as I had actually caught him driving the stolen car and leaped on to him as he was trying to get out of the driver’s seat (unfamiliar recessed door handles apparently). So there we were he had his day in Court.
Up stands me, a vision in my pressed blue uniform with the little halo over the top and the words “trust me” embroidered on the back !!! Produces trusty pocket book, “notes made at the time, your worship”
“And I arrested the defendant, in the seat of the Ford Cortina, index number ABC123D, a vehicle which had been reported stolen some 2 hours before. I cautioned him and his reply after caution was”
“I will tell you anything you want officer, but please stop hitting me”
Dreadful silence for some seconds. The magistrate says,
“Can you repeat that Officer” – so I repeat it. Another silence. The magistrate then says
“Officer, did you in anyway assault the defendant ?”
I says, “Other than holding his arm whilst arresting him (It was always considered good practice to actually hold on to the defendant when arresting them- in case they were away on their toes for one thing !), and then handcuffing him before placing him in to the police vehicle, no your Worship” The magistrate still looks puzzled and then says to the defendant. “Did the Officer assault you on your arrest ?”
Scrote replies “Nah mate, he’s nicked me loads of times and unless you kick off he‘s all right” (told you he was not right in the head !)
“So why did you make that reply, knowing that the Officer would write it down, and produce it as evidence in court”
“Don’t know mate, but I thought it sounded funny at the time – didn’t think he’d write it all down”
“That, young man, is a typical example of the worst type of behaviour that you young persons of today seem to think is amusing”
“Gotcha”, thinks I
He tries to give some sort of rambling evidence on his own behalf about being in the passenger seat and as I had forced the vehicle into a wall whilst trying to stop the lunatic doing 60-70mph in a 30mph limit he couldn’t get out of the passenger side so had tried to get our of the driver’s door ?? – As there were about 10-15 witnesses to the pursuit, and subsequent arrest, who all, strangely enough only saw the defendant in the car, driving. This defence sort of fell apart.
The magistrate then says to chummie
“It is plain that you have not only wasted the Court’s time, the witnesses and the Officer’s time with your frivolous “not guilty” plea, you seem to find it amusing to make stupid statements after caution, you can therefore laugh this off” He then gave him 28 days in jug, £200 fine, disqualified him (again) from driving and £200 costs
I managed to get out of court before I fell about laughing.
Some times you have good days in court ! This was one of the best
Evenin all
Mog

Comments:
Outstanding, if only all magistrates were like that.
 
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