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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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Despite having withdrawn my witness statement and having been

Resolved Question:

Despite having withdrawn my witness statement and having been misled by the police, the CPS are proceeding with the case and I under no circumstances want to appear as a witness as the defendant is a member of my family. I have written a letter to the CPU outlining the fact that I have been misled by the police and that my statement was given at a time when emotions were running high and I had been drinking alcohol. Can I write a letter to the judge direct? This is causing me great anxiety and stress worrying about the whole situation and its going to cause a lot of damage to a lot of good people.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 3 years ago.
Alex Watts :

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.

Alex Watts :

Was this a domestic violence case please?

Customer:

No its my brother in law - he had a scuffle with my son on an evening out where we were all drinking and when we got home he was there. Despite my son not being with us he set about my partner and we had to call an ambulance. I have not spoken to my brother in law since but he is a good man who has an exemplary past military record but alcohol turned him. If they proceed with the case against him which is GBH on my partner, common assault on me and drink driving, this will mean him losing his job etc and will affect a lot of lives. It is already causing great distress to both me and my sister.

Alex Watts :

Ok - so someone gave a statement to the Police, is that right?

Customer:

Yes both me and my partner gave statements at the hospital but when we had time to calm down and sober up we didnt want to pursue this. When we went to the police statement to withdraw our statements, each on a separate occasion, we were told that the statements would not be used and it would probably not proceed as there would be insufficient evidence without them. We were asked if the CPS did decide to go ahead would be appear as witness to which we both said no. We were asked if the statements were true and accurate and to sign a document. When I asked again if the statements would be used I was told no. We then received a letter from the CPU outlining court dates etc. I rang them and told them the situation and they advised that the police had done this before where they had not made it clear that the statements could still be used. We both feel so totally misled by people we should be able to trust.

Alex Watts :

Sadly as soon as you give a statement you lose control. It is no longer your case.

Alex Watts :

It is not a matter for you whether or not the CPS pursue this. They can pursue the case even without your consent. If you did not want the matter to proceed then statements should not have been given in the first place.

Alex Watts :

But you are where you are with that.

Alex Watts :

You have given a statement saying you withdraw your support, but that does not mean the case will be dropped.

Alex Watts :

It is down to the CPS and they can ignore your views.

Alex Watts :

But what can happen is this:

Alex Watts :

1) The case will be dropped

Alex Watts :

2) They will continue

Alex Watts :

If they continue then they can issue a witness summons

Alex Watts :

This means you have to attend Court.

Alex Watts :

If you do not then one of two things will happen:

Alex Watts :

a) the case will be dropped

Alex Watts :

b) the Court can issue a warrant for your arrest for that day

Alex Watts :

What you can do is just turn up at Court and refuse to give evidence. No-one can make you give evidence.

Alex Watts :

If you have a summons and do not attend, to avoid being arrested just make sure you can't be found, ie go out for the day.

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer:

They are continuing and a date has been set for an administrative hearing in December and then the trial date in April 2015. If we turn up at court and refuse to give evidence

Alex Watts :

Yes you can do that

Customer:

can they do anything? If we dont turn up and disappear for a day do they not pursue us?

Alex Watts :

No. All they can do is either dismiss the case or adjourn it to another day.

Alex Watts :

And again you make sure you are not found on that new date.

Customer:

how long can that continue for and would they dismiss the case in the end?

Alex Watts :

Well it would only ever normally be 1 adjournment permitted

Customer:

what would happen then - could it be called again as a new case?

Alex Watts :

No. if it is dismissed, that is it. it has ended.

Customer:

Could they still prosecute him just on the statements if they dont call us as witnesses? Sorry to keep asking questions but just so desperate for this to end for all of us.

Alex Watts :

No they can't - you ned to attend.

Customer:

Thank you you have been a great help.

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything else for you please?

Customer:

No I think thats it - thank you

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