Case Summary

The Queen on the Application of Mark Tait v Criminal Injuries Compensation Appeals Panel

Citation 2009  EWHC  767 (Admin) 
Decision Date 07/04/2009
Case Name The Queen on the Application of Mark Tait v Criminal Injuries Compensation Appeals Panel
Scheme 2001 Scheme
Paragraph Number P8(c), 11, 12
Keywords Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme 2001 – Paragraphs 8(c), 11, 12 - Eligibility – Criminal Injury - Police Officer – car chase – intention to injure
Headnote Summary of decision. The finding by the Tribunal that a car was not being used so as to deliberately inflict injury on any person was inconsistent with its finding that the driver of the car intended to damage and disable a police vehicle to enable the occupants of the car to make good their escape. Facts. The Applicant was a police officer. On 4 March 2003 he was a passenger in a police vehicle which was rammed twice by the driver of a stolen car. The Applicant alleged that he had suffered whiplash injuries. The Authority rejected the Applicant’s claim for compensation on the ground that his injuries were not sufficiently serious to qualify under paragraph 25 of the Scheme. The Applicant appealed. The Panel notified the Applicant that they considered that an issue under paragraph 11 of the scheme arose as the claim arose out of a car chase. At the hearing the panel considered the issue under paragraph 11 rather than paragraph 25. The Panel made the following findings of fact: (a) The applicant was a front seat passenger in a Ford Mondeo police car that was pursing a stolen Volvo estate with the intention of apprehending the occupants. (b) The driver and the occupants of the Volvo were very young. (c) The Volvo was twice driven into collision with the police car which was damaged and could not continue with the pursuit. (d) Immediately before the second collision the applicant had taken his seat belt off as he was intending to get out of the police car as he thought the alleged offenders were about to run away. This probably contributed to his injury. (e) The applicant was injured in the second collision. (f) Immediately before the second collision both vehicles were stationary, the Volvo rammed the rear offside of the police car and disabled it. (g) The car chase was a routine chase with no exceptional circumstances surrounding it. (h) The intention of the Volvo was to damage and disable the police car to enable the occupants of the Volvo to make good their escape. (i) The Volvo was not being used so as deliberately to inflict, or attempt to inflict injury on any person. The Panel rejected the Applicant’s appeal. Held allowing the Applicants application for Judicial Review. The panel erred in that they considered the drivers motive rather than his intention. The Applicant was deliberately targeted by the driver of the other car whose intention was to hit the Applicant’s car with so much force as to disable it. In the circumstances injury to the occupants of the police car was very likely if not inevitable. In these circumstances the Applicant fell within the class of persons who are eligible to compensation despite the general exception in paragraph 11 that a vehicle was deliberately used so as to inflict injury on him. Parts of scheme and other legislation referred to in judgment Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme 2001, (‘the 2001Scheme’) paragraphs 8(c) 11 and 12. Criminal Injuries Compensation Act 1995. Cases referred to in judgment Waide, Re Judicial Review [2008] NICA 1, Charlton v Fisher [2002] QB 578, Hardy v Motor Insures’ Bureau [1964] 2 QB 745, DPP v Smith [1961] AC 290. Representation, Martin Westgate instructed by Russell Jones and Walker for the Applicant. The Respondent was not represented.
Download Mark Tait v CICAP- Judgement of Mr Justice Stadlen.pdf