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Community Payback Order

stubear

Active member
#1
Was sentenced at court today.

Excess whilst in charge, no aggrivating factors other than swerving on road.

Blew 96mcg :(

Was sentenced to:

24 month driving ban

1 year community payback order (1 year social work supervision)

Unfortunately in court there was no mention of the DD course to help reduce the ban, I wanted to ask but was a bit afraid to butt in
on the proceedings. I did ask for it in my letter of apology at first hearing, but there was no mention of it at all so they maybe weren't aware.

When I went to the social work office after court, the woman seemed to reckon they could ask the court to refer me onto a course,

But I didn't seem to think this would be possible, have this ever been heard of??

Or could I phone the court first thing to ask if this was considered or added to my sentence

Or am I basically donald ducked?

Bit gutted as there doesnt seem to be consistencies from court to court, that said I'm no detracting from
my appalling offence, would just have been positive to have something to aim at, and thought I would have been offered as a first offender
but the process just went past so quick, and now I'm deflated that the chance has maybe gone??

Thanks for any advice.
 

Michael Lyon

Road Traffic Solicitor (Scotland)
#2
Stubear,

That is quite a significant sentence that has been imposed. I am afraid, however, that there is no provision to allow for the rehabilitation course to be granted retrospectively. It needs to be requested and imposed by the Sheriff at the time.

In fairness to the duty solicitor, he or she has little time to spend on your case and gets paid a negligible amount for the work undertaken so there can be no complaints about a service that you chose to obtain for free.
 

stubear

Active member
#3
Thanks for your reply Michael.

I'm certainly not complaining about the duty solicitor, the guy was spot on and I would just have stood myself and took the sentence, but I think the sheriff preferred to deal through the solicitors.

I just felt a bit sheepish that I was ignorant to proceedings, and felt it all passed before I could even ask about DD course that coupled with the many reports you see of it being offered, alas its my own fault I know, and perhaps the sheriff wouldnt have granted anyway, i'll never know.

It does seem at the heftier end of sentences, but again that said I commited the offence so have to take it.

The sheriff actually said it had been reduced from 36 months for the early plea.

I suppose I could instruct a solicitor privately to ask for it re-opened and to appeal for the DD course, but would it really be worth it to aggrivate the court further.

Like I say it was my first time ever being involved with anything like this and it all just sped by, so took a bit of sinking in that I wouldnt be able to do course, as I had identified one and everything, I should have handed the details in.

All that said it is what it is.

Thanks again
 
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stubear

Active member
#4
Michael do you think it would it be worth appealing / re-opening the case to ask for the
DD course or setntence reducded?

Or would this be a bit much hassle and perhaps aggrigate the court further, and I'm better
just taking the sentence on the chin and getting on with it?

Thanks
 

Michael Lyon

Road Traffic Solicitor (Scotland)
#5
Stuart,

You cannot appeal a failure to impose the rehabilitation course. It is either granted by the Sheriff when passing sentence or not; there is no mechanism available to impose it retrospectively.

Any appeal against the sentence requires to be lodged within one week of your court appearance. There is an argument that the sentence in toto is excessive; whether the Sheriff Appeal Court would be willing to interfere with the Sheriff's decision is only something you would find out if you embarked on the appeal process.
 

stubear

Active member
#6
Thanks for your reply Michael

I guess I'll just leave it then, as whilst its at the heftier end of sentencing its probably not
outrageous. An appeal court probably wouldn't be inclinded to reduce it.

I just kinda expected one punishment would outweigh the other, as there wanting me to
attend social work every week as well as the 24 month ban, I'm still no entirely sure of the reasons/need
for this as I feel I'm wasting the time of social work aswell as arranging it arround my job but will find out more at my 2nd appointment tomorrow.
 

stubear

Active member
#7
Had community payback appointment today, and the social worker even commented that he felt the
imposing of a CPO was severe and a surprise, and that a small amount of community service or something would have sufficed.

I'm now feeling guilty that I'm taking up social works time, when not really requiring supervision.

I got the minutes from court attached to my CPO sheet, which says the reason for imposition: alternative to a fine.

It also says:

The court disqualified the accused from holding and obtaining a driving licence for 24 months from the date on charge 1.

The court ordered endorsement of the driving record on charge 1.

The sentence imposed was discounted in terms of section 196 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995 and would otherwise have been 36 months on charge 1.


The sheriff did say she has discounted the ban from 36 at the time, but I think 36 months as a starting point would have been harsh in the extreme given first offence and no aggrivating factors. Your read of people getting 36 months for a 2nd offence!
 
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