Winnipeg driver frustrated with court delay to fight ticket
A Winnipeg man who says he was unfairly ticketed by police wants to know why the process to get traffic tickets reviewed in court takes such a long time.
Gerard Yaskowich says the court date he received to get his $113 ticket cancelled was in November 2014, prompting him to wonder why it would take a year to get a hearing.
"I'm upset that it takes time out of my life to basically look after something that's not even a traffic offence," he told CBC News on Friday.
Yaskowich said he was pulled over by a police officer on McPhillips Street near Murray Avenue for speeding in September.
"He said, 'You know, you're an excellent driver, you're a good driver, and obviously I pulled over the wrong vehicle,'" Yaskowich said.
Yaskowich said the police officer still asked for his driver's licence and vehicle registration, and he said it took him a few minutes to find the licence.
Issued ticket anyway
But by then, the officer had already written Yaskowich a $113.10 ticket for not having a driver's licence on him.
Yaskowich said when he did show the officer his licence, the officer marked on the back of the ticket that the licence was with him. As well, the officer did not sign the ticket.
Still, Yaskowich said he was told he would have to go to the provincial court on Broadway to deal with the traffic ticket.
"It almost appears that there is a ticket quota required by the officers," he said.
Winnipeg police told CBC News that officers are under no obligation to issue tickets and can cancel tickets at any time.
Yaskowich went to provincial court with his ticket in hand, but instead of getting it thrown out, he was told to go to court to have it cancelled. That was when he received the November 2014 court date.
When CBC News contacted Manitoba Justice regarding Yaskowich's concerns, officials quashed his traffic ticket because it was not signed — something that they said should have been caught earlier by staff.
As for the length of time it takes to get a court date, justice officials said dates are based on what's available.