How Does the Crown Prove Assault with a Weapon?
To secure a conviction, the Crown must be able to prove, at trial, all the elements that make up a specific offence beyond a reasonable doubt. Every criminal offence under Canadian law shares three basic elements that must be proven before the Crown can deal with the issues specific to assault with a weapon. These common elements include the identity of the accused, the date, time, and location of the offence.
The elements specific to assault with a weapon include that the accused must assault the victim and that they did so with a weapon. This means that the Crown must prove the accused intentionally or recklessly and without thought to the probable consequences applied force to the victim without their consent. Once the assault has been proven, the Crown must prove one of the three conditions that were discussed in the first question on this page. It must be shown that the accused was carrying a weapon, used a weapon to commit the assault or threatened to use a weapon to commit an assault as demonstrated in the example set out above. Where the Crown is able to prove each relevant element beyond a reasonable doubt, the accused will be convicted and sentenced.
Can an Assault with a Weapon Charge Impact Someone’s Immigration Status?
It is possible that an assault with a weapon conviction could impact a person’s immigration status. Given that the offence carries a 10-year maximum sentence, assault with a weapon that is prosecuted by indictment qualifies as serious criminality according to s. 36(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.
That provision states that any permanent resident convicted of an indictable offence such as assault with a weapon will be considered inadmissible to Canada. The same ruling would apply to any foreign national that has entered Canada, according to s. 36(2) of the IRPA. A person convicted of assault with a weapon that faces a sentence of six months imprisonment or more could face deportation. If the person has entered Canada using a work permit or student visa, that permit may not be renewed after they have been deported. The same consequences face a person seeking refugee protection. An assault with a weapon conviction may result in their refugee claim being suspended and the deportation process being triggered.