Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')
As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.
1. What is your Force's policy on prosecuting drivers for using mobile phone whilst driving ?
2. Does your force prosecute on written evidence from a member of the public and subsequent
analysis of the drivers phone by Police ?
3. Will you only prosecute when written evidence is corroborated by film footage form a dash cam
or similar ?
We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.
Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted within Northumbria Police. I can confirm that the information you have requested is held in part by Northumbria Police.
I am able to disclose the located information to you as follows.
1.No information held. There is no specific policy in place. Prosecution is based on strength of evidence, previous convictions of driver and if they are eligible for an NDORS course
2. Any person can contact the Police to report an offence. In the case of mobile phones then the written evidence would need to be submitted as formal written statement. This would be reviewed and a decision made as to whether or not this would be investigated. Any person submitting a statement may be required to attend court and give evidence as a witness, they may also be subject to cross examination by any defence solicitor representing the driver. Whilst phones can and have been analysed it is not a given that this will occur, due to a number of factors, again it will be dependent on the strength of the initial evidence provided.
3. See above – all evidence submitted will be reviewed prior to any prosecution decision.