Driving the Point Home: What You Need to Know About Evasion Offences - The Fines, Penalties, and Consequences
When you see flashing lights in your rear-view mirror, and a police car is signalling for you to pull over – it is your legal obligation to comply. What happens when you evade this signal?
In the realm of law enforcement, the charge of evading the police carries substantial weight. The Police Powers and Responsibilities Act 2000 outlines the obligations of drivers to stop when signalled by police officers.
Understanding Evasion Offences
Obligations Under the Law
When police officers signal drivers of another vehicle to halt, it is not merely a request but a legal directive that the driver must comply with. The law requires the driver to stop their vehicle as soon as reasonably practicable, as would be expected of a reasonable person under the given circumstances.
Evidence of Evasion
Importantly, if the driver's actions suggest an attempt to avoid being stopped by a police officer, it's considered sufficient evidence of the offence.
The Cost of Evasion
Evasion offences in Queensland come with significant penalties. Here's what you need to know:
The minimum penalty for evasion is 50 penalty units or 50 days imprisonment served wholly in a corrective services facility.
If certain aggravating circumstances apply, such as the offence occurring at night or involving violence, dangerous weapons, property damage, or prior convictions, the maximum penalty can be up to 300 penalty units or 5 years imprisonment. In other cases, the maximum penalty is 200 penalty units or 3 years imprisonment.
Moreover, a conviction for this offence typically results in an automatic two-year licence disqualification - which can significantly impact your daily life.
Signalling and The Role of Police
The Act also emphasises the role of police officers in this process.
It lays out clear guidelines for how a police officer must signal a driver to stop. This can be done through physical or audible signals, or by displaying warning lights and sounding an alarm.
Navigating Your Rights
If you find yourself in a situation where you are signalled to stop by the police, understanding your rights is essential.
You do have the right to request proof of identity from the police officer, and you may choose to remain silent when speaking is not obligatory.
Additionally, you are entitled to record the names of any witnesses present, which can be valuable for your defence.
Seeking Legal Support: Your Best Defence
In the face of an evasion charge, enlisting the services of an experienced legal professional is essential.
Navigating the legal intricacies and seeking to lessen the severity of the charge demands the expertise of a qualified Traffic Law specialist. You deserve the best possible representation to safeguard your rights and advocate on your behalf.
Contact Creevey Horrell Criminal Lawyers
Based in Brisbane, Roma, Toowoomba, and Townsville.
Visit www.chcriminallawyers.com.au/contact-us to contact us today.