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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I was in a car park and moved my car and was asked to provide

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I was in a car park and moved my car and was asked to provide a breath specimen which I refused stating private land. Any way they arrested me and I was taken to the police station where I again refused. It is the charge sheet which confuses me. It states "On 1/2/2014 at Hednesford in the county of Staffordshire having been required to provide a specimen or specimens of breath for analysis by means of a device of type approved by the secretary of state pursuant to section 7 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 in the course of an investigation into whether you had commited and offence under section 3A,4 or 5 thereof failed without reasonable excuse to do so. CONTARY TO SECTION 7(6) OF THE ROAD TRAFFIC ACT 1998. My question is this from what I can gather having looked section 6 covers roadside and 7 at the police station. So should they if in pursuant of 7 not named the police station which is wattling (miles away) and not the Roadside being the car park being Hednesford? I would of thought Hednesford would have been mentioned for pursuing 6 and viser versa? Also no time is stated?

Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

Sorry but Im not sure what your question is about this?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

They are stating Hednesford which is where the car park was which is roadside and section 6 should they have not stated where the police station was because the are pursuing section 7 of the Act which states has to be done at the police station? Basically have they made an error on the charge sheet?


So what is your question?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Basically have they messed up the charge sheet because the police station is not in Hednesford that is where the car park is and he would have been requesting preliminary breath tests section 6. Section 7 has to be done at the police station and if they have is the case dismissed?

No I'm afraid not.

All this will mean is that you could plead not guilty and contest it as the charge sheet pleads incorrect facts.

However, all that will happen is that the Crown will find this and amend the charge sheet. They are always amending indictments and they don't even need the permission of the court until half time.

Even if they don't notice at half time they soon will when you give evidence and then they will just apply to the court to amend the charge sheet and its not likely to be refused I'm afraid.

I'm sorry this isn't the answer you wanted but it is the position that you face and I have a duty to inform you truthfully.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.

Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Basically my predicament is that I moved the car and obviously now wrongly refused the breath tests because the car park states private and a £85 pound fine. It is only small and is used by five separate business's and some even have name plates on spaces for that business. I moved the car because it was occupying the cafe's space and they would require that in the morning because I was leaving the car. Because one of the business's is a music bar they are saying public. I was waiting for my taxi I had ordered an hour before I moved my Car and I have proof of this both ordering and arriving because they text me. The problem is if I lose my licence I lose my work because I am a contracting Quantity Surveyor on a freelance basis so no car no work and subsequently house etc. I don't know which way to turn really because the punishment does not seem to fit the crime to me. Any advice would be appreciated Thanks

I can help with that. What would you like to know with that?

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Jo c


I have looked into it and because off the sign stating private and separate business's etc. 5 in total using the car park some having signs only for their use etc To me it is Private which is what I said at the time to the officer. He had been phoned up we think because they offer £250 and I was waiting for my taxi when he arrived. I stated private he then basically lost his temper and arrested me etc etc. My belief is its private land and if that can be proved then its unlawful to ask for a breath sample because its private. It was your thoughts on that really?


With Thanks



It may well not be a public road within the meaning of the RTA but its almost certain a 'public place'.

In any event though, if the charge is failing to provide then it doesn't matter whether you would have had a defence to drink driving or not.

They only have to show that they reasonably suspect that a person is driving or attempting to drive on a road or other public place to justify a demand for a specimen.

Pub and supermarket car parks have been held to be public places under this legislation. The term 'public place' is quite well used by Parliament and it basically means any location you can access lawfully in your capacity as a member of the public.

I suppose you could try to argue that you were there as a lawful visitor rather than as a member of the public but the problem here is that they only need to show 'reasonable suspicion' rather than to prove the offence because you refused the breath specimen.

If you had provided then it might have been a point that could be taken.