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What is a police caution and do we have to do anything?

By questionmark20 - 29 June 2015 14

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My brother was recently pulled over and given a caution from a police officer.
We understand that he shouldn’t gain any demerit points or get a fine but does anything else happen?

Thanks all responders.

What’s Your opinion?


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14 Responses to
What is a police caution and do we have to do anything?
Skyring 8:10 pm 19 Oct 15

A caution isn’t nothing, but it goes on your record. Do the same thing again and things will go harder for you.

Sometimes it goes the other way.

Police aren’t as diligent as they could be. Quite often they only have a vague idea of what the law is. I’ve found that it pays to carefully scrutinise any ticket I get. Often there’s a mistake on the ticket. Speed limit not recorded, location specified inaccurately, whatever.

You’ve got thirty days to respond. Take four weeks. By that time, the policeman will have forgotten all about you, unless you made yourself unforgettable, as some folk do. He’ll have no specific memories of the incident, he hands out dozens of these things in a week, and it’s been 28 days…

Write a letter, giving details of the ticket, the alleged offence and so on. You can be pretty vague here. All you need do is reset the clock for another 30 days. Don’t correct the information that’s in error or left unstated. Say that you have seen a problem, you dispute the incident, you’ve got the exact details because you recorded the incident, went back and measured the intersection, took photographs, looked up the road’s gazettal. Whatever.

At this point, you know more about the incident than the policeman. When he is asked about it, he’ll have to admit that you could be right. His copy of the ticket will be looked at carefully, and likely they’ll spot the same error you did and realise that if it goes to court, they won’t shine.

I once argued a ticket with the Queensland cops for four months. They had caught me speeding – in a zone that had recently been changed and my GPS still showed the old limit. They wrote me a ticket which didn’t show the new limit, though they alleged I’d been over it, and they neglected to specify which stretch of road it was on a sprawling intersection they’d only identified as “Exit 66”. This contained many different alignments with several different speed limits.

Eventually, they admitted defeat and gave me a caution.

Other times, I’ve done the wrong thing, been caught fair and square, the ticket was accurate in every respect, I’ve paid up.

I have no problem with cops doing their job with diligence and integrity.

But when they take short-cuts, leave out the facts, make mistakes, then I have to ask myself why they are holding me to a higher standard than they accept for themselves?

questionmark20 12:31 pm 19 Oct 15

Thanks Everyone, It has been just under 4 months and we have not heard anything else aside from a fine (i think) with $0.00 as the amount.

Thank you for all your help.

questionmark20

darkmilk 12:04 pm 30 Jun 15

Technically you need to forward that notice to your insurance company as well – who may then charge you a higher premium (reduce no-claim bonuses, rating 1 etc). If you have a big accident and haven’t told your insurer they could deny your claim, leaving you out of pocket. This, and as mentioned about getting caught again, is why it’s worth a ticket even though it’s $0.

Tooks 12:04 pm 30 Jun 15

shirty_bear said :

JC said :

shirty_bear said :

My experience is that nothing else happens. Certainly no demerits – no ticket, no fine, officially no offence committed. I don’t think it even gets recorded. He’s been let off.

Which seems about right … police in this town seem to think that traffic policing is too much trouble – if it can’t be done by a camera, it doesn’t need doing.

Anyone see the irony here? We have a case where someone was cautioned which of course means someone was pulled over by the police and your complaining they only want speed cameras. Hmm

Yeah, nice try … an offence serious enough to warrant pulling over, but not serious enough to warrant a ticket? That’s a pretty fine margin there. Or maybe it’s too much trouble for Mr Plod to write up a TIN? What he needs is a camera to do it for him.
If Mr Plod was serious about writing tickets, he could just set up shop at any set of traffic lights – he’d have writers’ cramp from ticketing red light runners in no time flat.
And geez, you’ve got to be unlucky getting caught by a real human policeman in the first place … spend more time driving around Fyshwick – it’s absolutely Rafferty’s Rules on the roads out here.

Mr Plod writes hundreds of tickets a week. Mr Plod knows it takes the same time and effort putting a caution through the Autocite as typing in a TIN. Mr Plod knows that there is more to traffic enforcement than applying a zero tolerance stance to every offence; he knows that sometimes a good chat with the driver about their behaviour can be just as – or more – effective than issuing a fine.

In addition to the traffic offences Mr Plod is expected to enforce, he has 12 active cases he needs to follow up on, 3 mention briefs to complete and he just got a short notice hearing brief to submit. Then there’s the breach of bail list and outstanding warrants list; he is expected to target the numerous people on those lists too.

So that covers off what’s already on his plate. First job of the day is a burglary. Easy enough, although in three months time when a fingerprint match returns from forensics, then that’s a whole bunch more work. Second job is a call from mental health. They have a client with a treatment order and they need to take him to hospital. Due to his history of violence, they need police to come and help. Police are in luck today though because the MH client is compliant, but they drive him to the hospital just in case he goes off.

Third job of the day comes on as Mr Plod and his partner a grabbing a quick bite of lunch. A disturbance. Woman’s ex has just barged in to her house, pushed her against the wall and smashed her laptop now refuses to leave. Plods drop their lunch and run out to their car, put the blue and reds on and race to the house as quick as they can. Again, they’re in luck. The bad guy is still at the house and he is arrested without incident. While another car comes to take her statement and do a doorknock, Plod takes bad guy to the watch house. Turns out he’s done something similar recently so they’d better prepare an opposition to bail. He’ll be in court tomorrow, Mr Plod’s day off, but he doesn’t want this guy to get out so he’ll go in.

They get back to station mid afternoon. Just in time to back up another crew going to a disturbance, which turns out to be nothing. As they’re about to leave they get called to a couple of teen shoplifters. This will take around two hours to deal with if the teens agree to interview.

On this shift in Mr Plod’s patrol zone ( let’s say city station) has had one Sgt car and two patrol cars. That’s it. Oh, they forgot about the Intel asking for traffic targeting in Fyshwick. They’ll try to get out there next shift. Hopefully.

shirty_bear 11:04 am 30 Jun 15

JC said :

shirty_bear said :

My experience is that nothing else happens. Certainly no demerits – no ticket, no fine, officially no offence committed. I don’t think it even gets recorded. He’s been let off.

Which seems about right … police in this town seem to think that traffic policing is too much trouble – if it can’t be done by a camera, it doesn’t need doing.

Anyone see the irony here? We have a case where someone was cautioned which of course means someone was pulled over by the police and your complaining they only want speed cameras. Hmm

Yeah, nice try … an offence serious enough to warrant pulling over, but not serious enough to warrant a ticket? That’s a pretty fine margin there. Or maybe it’s too much trouble for Mr Plod to write up a TIN? What he needs is a camera to do it for him.
If Mr Plod was serious about writing tickets, he could just set up shop at any set of traffic lights – he’d have writers’ cramp from ticketing red light runners in no time flat.
And geez, you’ve got to be unlucky getting caught by a real human policeman in the first place … spend more time driving around Fyshwick – it’s absolutely Rafferty’s Rules on the roads out here.

curlylocks 9:12 pm 29 Jun 15

As previously posted by other members it is noted (I was pulled over for holding a mobile phone) He came to my window and advised me that it was a caution got my licence went back to his bike came back with a traffic infringement notice with no $ to pay but he did advise me that if I was caught again doing the same thing that I would be fined and it will be noted on my licence for 12 months.

Tooks 6:54 pm 29 Jun 15

And a caution will be recorded in the Autocite system for (iirc) 6 months, meaning if you get caught again in that time, the caution will come back to bite you.

Holden Caulfield 3:46 pm 29 Jun 15

I got an official warning once in relation to some apparently dodgy parking globes. The copper was almost apologetic about it and was only being so strict because the Nats were starting the next day. He said they operate under a strict zero tolerance policy for issues like this when the Nats are on.

Anyway, the warning lasted 12 months and was recorded against my licence. If I was caught committing the same “offence” again then I would get a fine without question.

Aside from the warning though there was no penalty at all.

bd84 2:40 pm 29 Jun 15

If it was an official caution/warning, they usually give you or send you paperwork. This will be formally recorded against your licence and will be on record – the only real implication is that if you get caught doing something similar again they are unlikely to caution you and will write a ticket.

If it was a verbal don’t do it again warning then nothing will be recorded.

JC 2:19 pm 29 Jun 15

shirty_bear said :

My experience is that nothing else happens. Certainly no demerits – no ticket, no fine, officially no offence committed. I don’t think it even gets recorded. He’s been let off.

Which seems about right … police in this town seem to think that traffic policing is too much trouble – if it can’t be done by a camera, it doesn’t need doing.

Anyone see the irony here? We have a case where someone was cautioned which of course means someone was pulled over by the police and your complaining they only want speed cameras. Hmm

Rollersk8r 1:38 pm 29 Jun 15

I was pulled over (for the first time in my life) and cautioned about 2 months ago. The nice man said I would get a letter in the mail, or a fine in the mail if I’d been previously cautioned. Still waiting to receive any sort of letter.

To be fair I’m sure caution letters are not their top priority. My wife was in an accident years ago – and it took 2 or 3 months to receive a fine in the mail.

John Moulis 1:29 pm 29 Jun 15

Just ignore it, nothing more will happen. I received a caution for speeding thru a school zone in 2008. A motorcycle cop was behind me, pulled me over and began typing an infringement notice. I thought “Oh, no, it’s a fine and demerit points” but he came to my window, gave me the docket and said it was a warning. I’ve never heard anything more about it since then.

shirty_bear 11:21 am 29 Jun 15

My experience is that nothing else happens. Certainly no demerits – no ticket, no fine, officially no offence committed. I don’t think it even gets recorded. He’s been let off.

Which seems about right … police in this town seem to think that traffic policing is too much trouble – if it can’t be done by a camera, it doesn’t need doing.

Alexandra Craig 11:05 am 29 Jun 15

Yep, he will probably get a thing in the post that looks like an infringement notice but it will have $0.00 on it.

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