Man challenging two Red Deer photo radar tickets sees Crown withdraw them

A man who was fighting two photo radar tickets from the City of Red Deer received a letter from the Crown this week that the charges will be withdrawn.

Jim Seward said Wednesday that it’s only a partial victory because he wanted to be heard in court on Tuesday when he is scheduled to appear. Instead the charges will be withdrawn on that day. Seward said he wants to know why the charges are being withdrawn and he will attend court anyways.

He had intended to fight the tickets on the basis that it took too long to be served based on the provincial time guidelines of 21 days. He intended to call on the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the right to be informed of charges without unreasonable delay.

He also believed the photo radar locations were “fishing holes” used solely to bring in revenue for the City of Red Deer.

Some City of Red Deer photo radar equipment still uses film and the turnaround time of sending it to Eastern Canada to be processed, then back to Red Deer so it can be viewed, then the information being sent to a contractor to prepare a ticket to be mailed can take time. It can be even longer if staff shortages are involved.

Seward, a retired RCMP officer, received both tickets in the mail Aug. 15. One was for $111 and the other was for $107. They were from different locations in Red Deer on June 8 and June 15.

He said didn’t get the disclosure he requested from the Crown that he wanted for use in his defence. In that request he outlined 10 pieces of information he was seeking.

Included in this was: Any and all internal documents or memorandums of the City of Red Deer relating to the tolerance levels for use of photo radar; and “any and all memorandums issued by the City of Red Deer to the photo radar unit and the staff members of said unit, from January 1, 2016 up to and including today September 30, 2016 as it relates to the photo radar program and the operation of said program, in particular any memorandums that relate to the number of complaints being received with regards to the use of the aged equipment and the delays in the procedure surrounding the issuance of violation tickets.”

Seward said he encourages anyone who might have questions about their photo radar tickets to contact him on Facebook.

barr@bprda.wpengine.com

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