Monday, June 16, 2008

Any Appeals??

I guess i can share this with you all. This incident happened in my courtroom sometime ago. Since courtroom proceeding in general is open to public, there is no secret about this anymore.


It was a traffic summon case. This chap was being fined for driving in the emergency lane on one of our many highways. To keep matter simple for himself and for everyone else, he pleaded guilty to the charge when it was read to him. I made sure he understood the charge and its consequences again before I asked him if he would still want to plead guilty. He remained steadfast to his decision.


I then asked him for his discount speech. I call it the discount speech because the procedure is that after an accused person pleads uilty or is found to be guilty by the Court, he will then beg for a lenient punishment.


"Anything you would like to submit reduce your punishment?"


"Yes Sir. Actually, on that day, my wife was about to give birth and I was rushing home to fetch her and to send her to the Hospital."


That got me wondered. Isn't that an emergency? I shrugged off that thought giving the benefit of the doubt to the enforcemen officer who actually fined this chap. Maybe this chap didn't explain his circumstances to use the emergency lane. Maybe he did explain but the officer didn't understand (sometimes we mumble when we are too excited or tense...)


I pushed aside all of the maybe's above and asked the chap:


"Did you get a by or a girl?"


"No Sir. The baby died due to some lung complications"


I didn't expect that coming. That statement caught me off guard. I thought hard for a while then I decided to just grant a caution and discharge upon the chap. This means, the chap need not pay any fine as he is only cautioned and discharged from any punishments.

Blog Adjourned!



Reactions:

0 obiter dictum: