LawAnswers.com.au - Australia's #1 Legal Community

LawAnswers.com.au is a community of 10,000+ Australians, just like you, helping each other.
Ask a question, respond to a question and better understand the law today!
Join us, it only takes a minute:

VIC Appearing in Magistrates Court Due to False Allegation?

Discussion in 'Criminal Law Forum' started by Porkncheese, 6 July 2016.

  1. Porkncheese

    Porkncheese Active Member

    Joined:
    5 July 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    I've been charged for property damage and have been summoned to appear in a Magistrates court.

    The allegation against me says that I called out this person from their home. I went to their car with a cordless grinder and I put a cut into the quarter panel about 15cm long. All done in full view of the owner who says he was right behind me or 15 meters away, depending on which statement you read. He goes on to say that I jumped into my car and drove forward but then reversed my car towards him. With a piece of wood, he smashed one of my tail lights.

    I gave a no comment interrogation.

    The best piece of evidence they have is a picture of my car showing a broken taillight. It was taken without my knowledge 2 days after the alleged event while it was parked at my house. They also have fragments of broken tail light.

    To me, this alone isn't enough evidence to say that I did it beyond any reasonable doubt. Or is it?

    Anyway, he did smash my taillight the week before. I bought a taillight several days before the date of the allegation and have an invoice to prove it. However, when I got home and opened the box, I saw it was the wrong tail light. I wasn't able to exchange it till the following week which is why cops were able to take that picture of my car.

    Anyway, that's the main part of it.

    I can't afford a lawyer and am forced to represent myself.

    Is there any help people can give me apart from speaking to Legal Aid? They just seem to give me the run around without any definite answers to anything.
     
  2. Rod

    Rod Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    27 May 2014
    Messages:
    2,149
    Likes Received:
    256
    Do you have an alibi backed up with witnesses or shopping receipts etc that prove you could not have been at that location at that date/time? Or was your car on a toll road at that time? Were you in a store that has in-store video (some stores overwrite files fairly quickly)?

    Does the prosecution have any other witnesses?

    Prosecution has broken tail light pictures, broken tail light pieces (from scene?), car owner who identifies both you and your car. Doesn't look promising for you without a good provable alibi.

    Has this person annoyed or upset other people who may have caused the damaged instead of you?

    At court I'd be asking about the piece of wood he claims to have used. Should be evidence with marks or fragments of tail light embedded in it. Ask him to describe the wood, where did he get it, what type of wood was it.

    The invoice for a tail light dated the week before is useful but not conclusive by itself.
     
  3. Porkncheese

    Porkncheese Active Member

    Joined:
    5 July 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    His girlfriend is a witness but does that hold much value? What kind of person wouldn't support their partner? Isn't it the prosecution that needs to be conclusive?

    My invoice isn't meant to be conclusive. But surely it is enough to cross the threshold of "beyond reasonable doubt". The broken tail light pictures of my car weren't taken at the scene. They were taken at my house 2 days after the allegation. The broken tail light pieces were allegedly picked up by the owner at the scene.

    How about the fact that there are major differences in his original written statement and the official statemant? Or how about the fact that he alledges I cut his car while he is right beside me? It would take around 30 seconds to make that cut. Plenty of time for him to stop and apprehend me. I surely wouldn't have been able to do that as well as get into my car and drive off untouched.

    Might make a short 2-minute video demonstrating the time it takes to cut steel. I think most people just don't know and would assume it takes 1 second. My guess is someone did it while no one was watching.

    Anyway, I'm not sure if questioning him about the wood will help. Remember, I'm saying he actually did smash my tail light with the wood a week before as I dropped off his girlfriend in front of his house.

    If it's probability, I need to show then yes there are people that would have motives to do that aside from myself who has never even met the man. For example, her former boyfriend who she only broke up with 2 months before has always hated this guy. He has the biggest motive. I have no motive. He has only framed me cause he is afraid she will leave him for me.

    I can't prove where I was that night. I was at home on my own. Perhaps I can show that I didn't use a road toll that evening as one would have been taken in order to get there.
     
  4. Rod

    Rod Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    27 May 2014
    Messages:
    2,149
    Likes Received:
    256
    The purpose behind detailed questioning is to trip up the other party. If they have not properly thought their story through they may stumble in the witness box and you may be able to discredit them and win your case that way. Taillight invoice and video help but not sure it is enough to be beyond reasonable doubt. It will be up to the magistrate on the day and it may well depend on who he finds more credible.

    ATM the police have good evidence and you have no alibi. Invoice is the only evidence in your favour but may not be enough. You need to read their statements and look for ways to discredit anything they have said. You can mention other possibilities like the ex-boyfriend as a way of increasing the doubt about who did it.
     

Share This Page

Loading...