Intimidation

The offence of intimidation is outlined in section 423(1) of the Criminal Code.

A person commits the offence of intimidation when they force someone to do something they do not wish to do or to stop someone from doing something they have a right to do. Some examples included situations where an individual:

  • uses violence or threatens violence to that person, their children, or their intimate partner;
  • injures that person’s property;
  • threatens violence, injury, or punishment to that person, their relatives, or the property of that person or their relatives;
  • follows that person persistently;
  • hides property owned or used by that person or otherwise deprives or hinders that person’s use of their property;
  • watches the person’s residence or place of work; with at least one other person, drives dangerously while following that person on a highway; or
  • blocks or obstructs a highway.

Examples

Person A harms person B’s dog to make person B commit a crime for person A.

Person C threatens to harm person D’s mother if person D continues to date person C’s sister.

Person E follows person F, their ex-girlfriend, everywhere she goes and threatens to keep doing this unless person F takes person E back.

Cases

R. v. Hardiman, 2014 ONSC 968

In R. v. Hardiman, the accused, hired by the victim to drive a moving van and load items into a storage locker, was charged with one count of intimidation for changing the locks to the storage locker and then demanding that the victim pay $6,000.00 to regain access to the locker.

R. v. Orton, 2019 ONCA 334

In R. v. Orton, the accused was charged with two counts of intimidation for following another car dangerously on the highway after this other car almost hit the accused’s car while changing lanes.

Offence Specific Defence(s)

Lawful Excuse

Where the person has a lawful excuse for forcing someone to do something they do not wish to do or to stopping someone from doing something they wish to do, they may not have completed the offence of intimidation.

Obtaining / Communicating Information

A person who approaches or attends a home for the purpose of obtaining or communicating information they may not have completed the offence of intimidation.

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