The Magistrate's Blog (2005-2012)

This blog has migrated to www.magistratesblog.blogspot.co.uk This blog is anonymous, and Bystander's views are his and his alone. Where his views differ from the letter of the law, he will enforce the letter of the law because that is what he has sworn to do. If you think that you can identify a particular case from one of the posts you are wrong. Enough facts are changed to preserve the truth of the tale but to disguise its exact source.

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Location: Near London, United Kingdom

The blog is written by a team, who may or may not be JPs, but all of whom are interested in the Magistrates' Courts.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

It's Being So Cheerful As Keeps Me Going

We are trying to catch up on our backlog of trials this month and some extra courts have been laid on. Inevitably, the first three that I sat on fell apart. The first changed his plea to guilty and the second had the charges greatly reduced, resulting in a guilty plea. The third was a typical foul-up; one witness was unavailable abroad and had been so for a while, but nobody had bothered to make a hearsay application. Neither police officer had been warned to attend by the CPS either. So the prosecutor bowed to the inevitable and threw his hand in, offering no evidence. I duly announced that the case was dismissed.
So far so not-very-good, but the day was enlivened by an (unsuccessful) attempt to escape from the courthouse and ended sombrely when I passed a huge pile-up on the motorway involving at least half a dozen cars and vans, with police ambulances and fire engines all over the place. (later edit) I discovered from the news that a helicopter had attended too, and landed on 'my' side of the road, so I was well out of it.