Frequently Asked Questions
Is Taking a Pet Theft in Orangeville?
Yes, taking a pet without the owner’s permission is considered theft in Orangeville and across Canada. Pets and animals are considered property. Animals are not people, and taking of a person is the separate offence of kidnapping enumerated in section 279(1) of the Criminal Code. Therefore, taking a pet is theft.
In the Ontario Court of Appeals case of R. v. Jackson,  ONCA 407, animal that was stolen was a dog. The dog was the subject of dispute between the complainant and his former girlfriend. The accused, the former girlfriend’s coworker and friend was seen driving an SUV away from the crime scene. Unfortunately, the dog was never recovered. The appellant was convicted for the theft of the dog and sought to appeal her case. The appeal was dismissed.
What if I Thought the Owner had Thrown the Item Away?
Any criminal case is decided on a case-by-case basis, including those in Orangeville. Any unusual or additional factors in the case would be presented in Court to be ruled and decided on by a judge. In some cases, the accused will have an opportunity to present this evidence to the Crown ahead of a trial, which may assist in resolving the charges. This is why using the section 10(b) rights entitled to every person in Canada is important; a lawyer may be able to make a full response to the questions and charges laid by the Crown. If the issue of found property is raised, the lawyer may arrange for a crown pre-trial to discuss with the Crown.
In order for the accused to be acquitted on the grounds that the item was found, they must have had genuine belief that the property was abandoned. In the Provincial Court of British Columbia case of R. v. Thomas,  BCPC 391, the accused claimed that he thought the truck batteries he took was discarded by the complainant. He was charged with theft under $5,000. The batteries were left at the top of the complainant’s driveway. The Crown evidence established that the complainant did not renounce the properties by placing the batteries at the top of his driveway, nor did he intent for other people to take them. The Crown had to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused had the intent to take the batteries fraudulently and without colour of right. The accused was not credible and the judge did not believe him in that he had an honest but mistaken belief in his own colour of right. The accused was found guilty contrary to s. 334(b) of the Criminal Code.
What is Time Theft?
Time theft occurs when an employee states they have worked more hours than they actually have, and collect payment they are not entitled to. In the Criminal Code, there is no separate offence for time theft in comparison to theft. The value of the theft is based on the calculation of the hourly wage. Then the theft would be either categorized as section 334(a) of theft over $5,000 or section 334(b) of theft under $5,000.
Stealing from one’s employer is always an aggravating factor. Stealing from one’s employer amounts to a breach of trust, because the employer entrusted the employee with tasks and responsibilities that they expect to be completed.
Is there a Difference Between Theft and Shoplifting?
The Criminal Code does not enumerate a separate offence for shoplifting. Shoplifting is often charged under s. 334(b), theft under $5,000 though it may also include theft over $5,000.
To prove theft under s. 322, the Crown must prove: the identity of the accused, the date and time of the incident, the jurisdiction of the incident, the act of the theft, the intent of the theft, the proof of ownership of the property, that the owner did not give permission to the property, and various other elements. In addition to proving these elements, the Crown may need to prove that (1) the accused did not pay for the items or make an attempt to pay, (2) that the accused did not have money to pay for the items (3) whether the accused had the alleged property in possession at the time of theft.
What if I was Caught for Shoplifting but not Charged?
Shoplifting charges are recently on the decline. Many convictions for shoplifting without a prior offence may result in discharges, suspended sentences, or fines. There is a possibility the charge may be withdrawn depending on the circumstances of the offender and nature of the offence.