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Really scared. Received Notice of Prosecution and I don't know why.

(40 Posts)
KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 16:10:54

I got a Notice of Intended Prosecution from the police accusing me of Failing to Stop, Failing to Report and Accident, Careless and Inconsiderate Driving.

I was in the time and the place mention in the letter so I was definitely the driver but I have NO IDEA WHAT I'M SUPPOSED TO HAVE DONE! How can this be?

I've filled in the form and said as much on the back. Was that the wrong thing to do?

I'm really scared. Should I seek legal advice now? I wouldn't know what to tell them. Will I definitely have to go to court?

Thanks in advance for any light anyone can shed on this. I have a terrible knot in my stomach all the time and I don't know what to do.

aturtlenamedmack Mon 09-Sep-13 16:16:27

I don't understand. Did you notice an accident?

PeterParkerSays Mon 09-Sep-13 16:16:51

Can you remember anything at all about that journey? Was there someone who stepped out then changed their mind?

Remember that someone else can report the incident, and obviously has if they got your registration number, but they may not have got a good view of what happened / misread the situation.

KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 16:23:31

I can remember the journey. I was coming back from a hypno session. I can't remember anything happening. I didn't notice anything at the point mentioned. However I do remember someone flashing their lights behind me a mile or so after the point stated on the NIP. I wondered why and assumed my brakes lights weren't working or something.

Igloofornow Mon 09-Sep-13 16:27:03

Have you phoned police to ask? I would have thought they would have come round to ask you about it? Otherwise it must be pretty minor?!

DreadLock Mon 09-Sep-13 16:32:25

phone the police and ask what this is about. Dont fill any forms or return anything until you have established clearly what is going on.

BerryLellow Mon 09-Sep-13 16:39:44

Surely they could have come around to see you first? Weird. I'd definitely ring your local station if I were you, don't fill anything out until you know what is going on.

MrsDeVere Mon 09-Sep-13 16:42:01

Sounds like it may have been a police car that flashed you, signalling you to stop.

Try not to freak out. I got one of these for a minor speeding offence and I almost had a breakdown over it blush

There should be an email address on the letter it came with.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 09-Sep-13 16:44:26

It's odd that they didn't come round and talk to you.

I was in an accident with someone who didnt stop (their fault), I went to the police and I know for a fact the police went to this drivers house to take a statement.

I don't see how you can be charged like this when they haven't even established who was driving.

In my case the driver lied to the police and denied been there and the police said it was too much bother to do anything about it. Thankfully my insurance company had more time on their hands and got them.

starfishmummy Mon 09-Sep-13 16:47:57

If it had been the police flashing their lights I am sure they would have stopped the OP.

KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 16:51:26

Too late I've filled in the form and sent it saying I was the driver at the time and place but don't recall any incident.

It wasn't a police car which flashed me unless it was unmarked.

I called the police and they said the notes say I pulled out and made contact with a car. Surely I would have heard or felt that though?

handcream Mon 09-Sep-13 16:53:40

I had a friend a few years ago being accused of failing to stop for an unmarked police car late at night. She genuinely didnt realise they were police officers. She went to the local police station asking to see the senior officer. As someone stated surely they would call you etc.

She told them that asking lone women to stop late at night and then sending a letter saying she would be taken to court was totally unacceptable. She made a clear statement and they fortunately took the view that they could have handled it better and the case was dropped. Not sure I would stop for an unmarked car with two men in trying to show ID whilst I was driving tbh.

KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 16:53:53

Mrsdevere I understand why you almost had a breakdown over it. That's how I'm feeling. I can't even think straight. It's like I'm in a bubble and this is day 3.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 09-Sep-13 16:54:46

Well it's one of two things,

Either the other driver is trying it on and although you were there you weren't involved in an accident. Possibly no accident or possibly another car that was also there......maybe they chased the wrong car down the road and took the wrong cars details?

Or you were so relaxed after your hypno session you didn't notice. grin

I hit Dh's car once without realising, but he was parked and I was reversing slowly past. I'd have thought at any greater sppeed you'd once.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 09-Sep-13 16:54:58

Notice not once.

Clearly someone's reported you for hitting their car.

It doesn't mean you did though.

VivaLeBeaver Mon 09-Sep-13 16:55:52

You're doing the right thing saying you were there but that you didn't notice an accident.

handcream Mon 09-Sep-13 16:56:16

Why dont you take a deep breath and make an appointment to see someone at your local police station as opposed to thinking up scenarios that are getting worse and worse. Sometimes its best to see people face to face especially as you have no damage to your car which of course you will invite them as being welcome to inspect.

TCOB Mon 09-Sep-13 16:59:06

Knot please try not to worry - exactly the same thing happened to me (well almost, I thought I'd touched a car but no way that I'd damaged it) and had the notice of intended prosecution. The insurance company will be behind this as they can't proceed unless they say it's a genuine incident and they need ref number etc to do this. The police by and large have no interest in pursuing these cases, they are NOT in the public interest, all they are bothered about is oiling the machinery of the insurance companies who will sort it all out on your behalf. I could not sleep, or eat. I genuinely thought I'd destroyed my life. I had not, and nor have you. Please don't worry. I know exactly how you feel. My thread on the subject was under another name, think it was notreadyforprison in Legal, will try and find to post.

Consider your hand held and a nice brew gently placed in your hands.

handcream Mon 09-Sep-13 16:59:59

To lighten this up a bit. I was stopped many many years ago by a marked police car who said they had spotted me trying to fill up my scooter and making a bit of a mess of it. They followed me up the road and said they were just checking everything was OK.

I then arrived home and the two chaps were waiting outside my Mum's house (they had looked me up using the DVLA). They then asked me whether I would like to go to a party with one of them that weekend!!

At the time I was ironically going out with a police officer....

MrsDeVere Mon 09-Sep-13 17:00:55

I think you have to fill the forms in.
If you were the driver at the time of the alleged incident, it doesn't mean you admit you have done anything.

It was straightforward for me. I was five miles over a temp speed limit on an unfamiliar road. I would have been on camera.

KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 17:04:25

God thanks TOBC. I'd love to read your thread. I'm terrified. Did you have go to court?

KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 17:05:36

TCOB. Sorry.

Yorkieaddict Mon 09-Sep-13 17:06:58

Don't panic OP, its a standard form that is sent out in these type of situations. If you genuinely didn't know you'd been in an accident then you've done nothing wrong and its unlikely to go any further once the police have spoken to you and got your account. Have you checked your car for any damage?

TCOB Mon 09-Sep-13 17:11:57

Nope. I didn't got to court - and I had made a real mess of a few things, not least of which was not yet having changed my address (itself something you can get a large fine for), hence I did not respond until after the allotted time for a response. My neighbour at the time was a police officer and he was consoling. I did all the paperwork, sent it back, then about a week later got a call saying thanks but we won't be following this up. My insurers were great, said they understood totally why I hadn't noticed and that the damage to the other vehicle was consistent with my report (i.e. verrry minor, it just happened to be the type of car where even a new tyre costs a fortune!) and now it's just a bad memory, as it will eventually be for you.

Looking for the wretched thread, but it's lost grrr! Will keep trying...

TCOB Mon 09-Sep-13 17:15:30

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/legal_matters/a1544092-scared-out-of-my-mind-not-stopping-after-accident

I was a damn sight more culpable than you as you can see....!

Cheerymum Mon 09-Sep-13 17:15:38

We got one of these forms from the police and we were sure we weren't there. An independent witness said we were. We completed the form truthfully and spoke to a police officer and our insurers. The police were friendly and kept us in the loop until they were able to confirm they were dropping it. The insurers tell us they are going to pay out on a without prejudice basis - I am actually annoyed about this, and at the moment it's showing as an open claim on our record, so to change insurers we'd have to declare it, but no criminal part to deal with at least.
Phone your police traffic division, and ask to speak to the officer assigned to your case. It sounds to me most likely that someone is trying something on. The police will most likely be friendly and reassuring, and this is probably related to an insurance claim (real or fraudulent) that is being made against your policy. Does your policy include legal cover? If so, phone for advice.

Billwoody Mon 09-Sep-13 17:29:05

I got one of these. I was about 22 at the time and I was scared witless until I realised that my car had been in the garage on the day in question. We thought it had maybe been a garage driver that had been involved while driving my car - however, it turned out that the police had sent out six similar letters; they had a partial plate and sent it to all local red cars with similar plates. My dad sent a very strong letter to the Chief Super accusing them of intimidating a young girl on no evidence - and they apologised!
Not relevant in your case though as you were obviously there. The flashing is interesting - it could have been the driver who has now gone through his insurance co?

KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 17:31:52

Thanks so much TCOB. Very reassuring. It's SO helpful to know someone else has come through it alive and sane!
Cheerymum that is so galling. Some of these insurance companies behave disgracefully. They shouldn't be allowed to terrify people like this.

Off to read TCOB's thread.

DreadLock Mon 09-Sep-13 17:37:58

OP I would not disclose that you were on your way back from a hyno session.

DreadLock Mon 09-Sep-13 17:38:41

hypno

KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 17:44:17

Thanks again TCOB. I've read the thread and I feel so much calmer. If I had really hit another car or caused any serious damage I would most definitely have felt it wouldn't I?

I didn't even have the radio on as its broken.

KnotInTheStomach Mon 09-Sep-13 17:56:14

Good point dread. Ill only say this if they ask.

TCOB Mon 09-Sep-13 18:03:15

Well, I wouldn't say that I am sane but certainly not madder than before grin . Keep us posted; the support on here meant a lot to me and I'm pleased it's helping you too!

OhDearNigel Mon 09-Sep-13 22:48:25

they dont mean failing to stop for the police. with the other charges, this means failing to stop at the scene of an accident.

it is a legal requirement for us to give a NIp when dealing wtih these sorts of thing. the file is probably being dealt with by the central ticket bureau who send you a standard letter asking you to give an account of events. the notice of intended prosecution basically means "we are considering prosecuting you so be careful what you say". its essentially a caution in letter form iyswim.

once they have your response they will decide whether it is in the public interest to take you to court.

OhDearNigel Mon 09-Sep-13 22:52:00

and Op, you havent been charged. they are simply investigating an allegation. unfortunately most people panic when cautioned and think "thats it, im off to prison !!" when actually it is a legal requirement for us when asking anyone for an account of events which may eventually lead to them being prosecuted.

i know its very easy for me to say but please try not to worry. its just an investigation at this stage.

OhDearNigel Mon 09-Sep-13 22:54:20

and please sent the forms back. failing to declare the driver information will get you into trouble whether you have done something or not

KnotInTheStomach Wed 11-Sep-13 00:09:18

Thanks OhDearNigel. I sent the forms back sharp ish because I didn't open them for a while as they were addressed to my dh (who's named as car owner) and he was away. So already there was a delay but I got the form in within the stated 28 days.

I'm still quite scared about this but nothing like the abject terror I was feeling before. That's thanks to Mumsnet.

KnotInTheStomach Fri 13-Sep-13 16:58:51

Just like you said, TCOB. I've had another letter saying they're not going to proceed with this.

Damn that was scary! I'm relieved but a bit pissed off to have been put through it for nothing.

Thanks again for your help. You talked me down nicely.

lougle Fri 13-Sep-13 23:06:41

Not quite the same thing, but when I was around 16 I was having a lift home after a games night at a friend's house. A police car pulled us over and asked us why we'd thrown our chip paper out of the window. We hadn't had any chips confused.

We ended up having quite a strident exchange and the policewoman and policeman insisted that they had seen us do it.

Eventually I asked them if they could smell chips in our car at all. They sniffed and said no grin

It turned out that we had joined the carriageway and sucked a chip wrapper under the car from the bank. The policewoman had seen it float out the other side and assumed we'd chucked it out the window.

Totally irrelevant but there you go wink

Glad it's all sorted for you.

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