Frequently Asked Questions
What are Some Rights on Arrest in Cobourg?
During an arrest in Ajax, Pickering or Cobourg, the police must reveal and disclose rights that the suspect has. After the police arrests a suspect and lays the charges, certain rights of the accused are suspended while other rights are triggered. The rights enumerated in section 7, 9, 10, and 11 of the Charter form the foundational basis for rights throughout a criminal proceeding.
Section 7 guarantees an individual their right to life, liberty, and security of the person, and not to be deprived of those rights except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice. This means that the government cannot cause death or increase the likelihood of an individual’s death. The right to liberty ensures that the person cannot be wrongfully imprisoned or detained. The right to security of the person guarantees them from physical or psychological harm or threats. The right to remain silent is derived from section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The right to remain silent can be one of the most important rights for an individual suspected of a crime, including theft offences.
Section 9 of the Charter guarantees a person the right to not be arbitrarily detained or imprisoned. This means that the detention and imprisonment must be authorized by law, the law cannot be arbitrary, and the manner in which the imprisonment is carried out is reasonable. If a person is detained arbitrarily, it is an infringement of their rights.
Section 10(b) guarantees the right to retain counsel and to be informed of the right to retain counsel by the arresting officers. If the arresting officer does not inform the accused of their rights, the accused may raise a Charter challenge in court. It is important to contact and retain a lawyer as soon as possible once arrested. A lawyer may help the accused in planning for bail.
Section 11(b) guarantees the right to be tried within a reasonable time. This protects the individual from the stressful ordeal of drawn-out court processes. If the accused is not tried within a reasonable time, a remedy may be entered under section 24(1) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. In the Ontario Court of Justice the Crown has 18 months to bring the accused to trial. In the Superior Court of Justice, the Crown has 30 months to bring the accused to trail.
Does the Item Taken Matter?
Yes, there are different types of theft enumerated in the Criminal Code. For example, a wild living creature in captivity is considered property, and has rights to it after it has escaped. In addition, taking a piece of ore for a scientific purpose is not theft; section 333 of the Criminal Code explicitly states that taking ore from land that is not enclosed or occupied or worked is not theft.
Section 333.1(1) enumerates the specific offence of motor vehicle theft, which is prosecuted differently from theft. In addition to proving the theft, the Crown also must prove that it was a motor vehicle that was stolen. Motor vehicle theft is a hybrid offence, which means it may be prosecuted by summary conviction or indictment, depending on the circumstances of the offence. The maximum penalty for motor vehicle theft by indictable election is 10 years incarceration, and 18 months incarceration by summary election.
What if the Thief Breaks or Destroys the Property?
The intentional breaking or destroying of property is the separate offence of mischief, enumerated under section 430(1) of the Criminal Code. When someone commits mischief, they are intentionally destroying/damaging property, rendering that property useless, dangerous, inoperative, or ineffective.
In some cases, an accused may be charged with both theft and mischief. If for example, an accused person took someone else’s cellphone from them (theft) and then smashed the phone (mischief) they could be charged with both offences.