Talk

Advanced search

To think that the legal system doesnt give much thought to witnesses?

(15 Posts)
MsMarvel Sat 15-Mar-14 11:53:12

My oh was a victim of a crime. He has to go to court as a witness. As well as this they took his jacket from him (this happened in November) which he is yet to see back. Apparently it would have had DNA on it.

The court date has been changed so many times. He will get his citation, then from the date onwards he'll get a phonecall everyone king for about 2 weeks saying it'll be tomorrow, then that gets postponed to the next day etc... This will go on for about 2 weeks and then he will get issued with another citation. He has had 3 separate citations now. He is at uni and this is messing up his assessments etc because he has to apply for the time off each time he gets a new date. And he also works part time and has had to mess his boss about with what shifts he can do.

When police came with new citation last night (at 11.45pm!) he asked if there was anything he could do to claim back for shifts he's missed out on because of canceled court dates and was told no, they only reimburse for stuff lost out on on the actual court date. When it actually happens.

AIBU to think this is a crap system, where victims and witnesses are basically an afterthought, and can continue to be inconvenienced indefinitely, all to try and sort out a nice agreement with the shitebag who is for some ridiculous reason pleading not guilty, so all this delay will be trying to sort out an agreement wih him to keep him happy? Why does he get that courtesy?

Sorry, rant over, and I know I'm not very knowledgable about the legal system, but from
My viewpoint just now it all seems pretty shit.

Timeforabiscuit Sat 15-Mar-14 12:03:29

you're right it is shit, and I would like to say a really big thank you to your partner for going through all this.

he is doing a good and valued thing, I know appreciation doesn't help with lost shifts sad

Do you have a police and crime commissioner in your area? - they are elected (and accountable), so could shed some light on the delays?

GertTheFlirt Sat 15-Mar-14 12:05:34

The police came at a 1/4 to midnight to give a court date?

Are you in the UK?

FrigginRexManningDay Sat 15-Mar-14 12:07:33

Dh was a witness in a court case and was compensated for having to miss work. Is there a similar thing where you live?

MsMarvel Sat 15-Mar-14 12:08:12

We think the delays are to do with potentially other warrants out for the guy in question. What's most annoying about it all is that most likely it'll come to the day in court, and just before it starts the guy will take a settlement out of court. Last minute change his plea or something. It's just so frustrating that there's not more thought involved. I don't want to go into too much detail about what it's about, but dp wasn't too phased about what happened, but if it had happened to me I would have been in absolute pieces and dreading this upcoming reliving of it all. To have that constantly delayed and dragged out would make it so much more difficult.

MsMarvel Sat 15-Mar-14 12:11:32

He will be compensated for anything he misses while at court, but he won't be for all the postponed dates that he's cancelled stuff for because the court didn't actually happened in the end on that date. Yes we are in the uk.

OhGoveUckYourself Sat 15-Mar-14 12:13:43

Why are the police involved in witness details, it is nothing to do with them once the case is prepared and the defendant charged; I take it you are not in England and Wales. I do agree with you about treatment of witnesses in general, it is inconsiderate in the extreme.

MsMarvel Sat 15-Mar-14 12:26:44

I'm in Scotland, and I know that if you get a citation for a court appearance it's the police that deliver it in person to you

OhGoveUckYourself Sat 15-Mar-14 13:07:34

I knew it wasn't England and Wales Ms Marvel so thanks for clarifying that. Sorry that your partner is being messed around, hope that it is done and dusted soon and he has a positive outcome.

NurseyWursey Sat 15-Mar-14 13:10:06

It's an absolute joke. I'm due in court as a witness on a fortnight but still haven't been given a specific date (just week commencing) or time. Ridiculous. Surely they know by now.

littlewhitebag Sat 15-Mar-14 13:14:41

I so agree with you MsMarvel The job i do means i get lots of court citations and i have wasted many working days/days off attending court. The irony of it is that i have yet to actually be called into the court room to testify. Either, the accused pleads or they run over and the date is rescheduled or a key witness doesn't turn up or the case is abandoned or they decide they don't need me to testify anymore. It is infuriating.

examtaxi Sat 15-Mar-14 13:18:54

My ds was the victim of an armed robbery.
He had to go to the crown court, run the gauntlet of the assailant's family and friends in the entrance hall, then stand up and give his name and address while they all sat in the public gallery making throat cutting gestures at him.

The local paper then published his name and address. (Because he had just turned 18, apparantly this is all perfectly fine).

Due to the total incompetence of the police, only one member of the gang had been arrested, so we lived in fear for ages afterwards as these people knew where we lived.

The system is awful. No support for victims or witnesses at all.

I haven't even told half the story, but believe me it was much worse than i have said here.

OP I am sorry your dh had to go through this, but it seems to be par for the course.

Purplefrogshoes Sat 15-Mar-14 13:51:43

Your DH should be reimbursed for losing his wages if he was cancelled at the last minute all he has to do is get his employer to fill out the back of the citation, if he goes into the PF office or calls the staff will help with this.

creamteas Sat 15-Mar-14 15:16:26

I'm due in court as a witness on a fortnight but still haven't been given a specific date (just week commencing) or time. Ridiculous. Surely they know by now

But how could they know precisely when it will depend on other cases finishing and freeing up the court/judge etc etc.

I was at the magistrates court waiting to give evidence a few months ago. The case was listed for the afternoon, but the morning case(s) ran on and on. In the end the case I was involved with was rescheduled for another day 3 weeks later.

It is a pain, but predicting the length of trials is always guesswork not a precise science.

NurseyWursey Sat 15-Mar-14 15:17:45

Ah sorry creamteas I have little understanding of the court system. Of course you're right.

It's just very annoying how they're forcing me to go to court, but expect me to be able to block a whole week off for work.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now