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Style of causeRatio

Ashley Smith Inquest(s)


While not a court case, this ordeal has had a major impact on legislation, sentencing, and policy approaches to law.

Beaver v R, [1957] SCR 531

True crimes we need proof of subjective MR.
Mistake of fact is the denial of MR for the defence – it is not a defence it is just not having the requisite MR to make up the offence.

Brown v. Durham Regional Police (1998), 131 C.C.C. (3d) 1 (Ont. C.A.)

Police must have articulable cause to stop a person.
**Must have reason to believe that this particular person committed an offence related that the particular act in which they were stopped for (general requirement to detain people)

Police cannot use s.216 as an improper way to stop people. Police must have some HTA reason for stopping the vehicle and they cant have an improper purpose.
**Must not carry out a lawful operation by unlawful means.

Dunlop and Sylvester v The Queen, [1979] 2 SCR 881

Mere presence or passive acquiescence is not sufficient for liability w/o encouragement of principal offender or act of facilitation.
**Mere presence itself cannot be interpreted to be encouragement

Entick v Carrington [1765] EWHC KB J98

Before warrant can be issued there must be clear evidence that the individual was engaged in criminal activity. If you go onto your neighbor’s property you must justify it by law. Right against self incrimination

Forrester v. Peel Regional Police Services Board, 2006 HRTO 13

Transsexual detainee has choice of what sex of police officer will strip search them, and split-searches should be offered.

Hunter v Southam Inc, [1984] 2 SCR 145

With no warrant the search is prima facie unreasonable and onus is on police to prove that it was reasonable.

A person authorizing a warrant must be capable of acting judicially and must be an impartial authority, presented with sworn evidence, and must have reasonable and probable grounds that there is relevant evidence at site of search.

Kilbride v Lake, [1962] NZLR 590

An act or omission making up the actus reus must be voluntary.
Voluntary: A person can not be made criminally responsible for an act or omission unless it was done or omitted in circumstances where there was some other course of action open to him

Lévis (City) v 2629?4470 Québec inc, [2006] 1 SCR 420, 2006 SCC 12

The defence of officially induced error is available in law

Lewis v. The Queen, [1979] 2 SCR. 821

There is no obligation on the Crown to prove motive
**Motive is not necessary for conviction but is relevant for proof of intent or identity of person – to make out certain inferences

Marshall v R, [1969] 3 CCC 149 (Alta CA)

In determining possession, per s.4(3) of the Criminal Code, there must be evidence of consent to prove the unlawful act.

Molis v R, [1980] 2 SCR 356

Neither ignorance of the law or mistake of law are defences
**There may be some limited defence of mistake of law = lack of knowledge of an unpublished (in Gazette) regulations (cant be punished for an unpublished regulation

Moore v. The Queen, [1979] 1 S.C.R. 195

Omission to act in a particular way will give rise to criminal liability only where a duty to act arises at common law or is imposed by statute, or by contract.

People v. Beardsley 150 Mich. 206, 113 N.W. 1128 (1907)

For a duty to arise one must have a legal obligation. In the absence of a legal obligation, there is no requirement of a person to assist others.

If person harmed is in a relationship of dependency then their failure to act to protect them can give rise to criminal liability

Perka v The Queen, [1984] 2 SCR 232

Defence of Necessity - At a minimum the situation must be so emergent and the peril must be so pressing that normal human instincts cry out for action and make a counsel of patience unreasonable