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Aitken Robertson Can Defend Against Criminal Allegations in Brockville

Drinking and Driving (Impaired Driving)

Drinking and Driving (Impaired Driving)

Operating a vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drugs is illegal as is operating a vehicle with amounts of alcohol or drugs in your blood that are over the legal limits. The penalties for these sorts of offences are severe and include fines, a prohibition on driving and driver’s licence suspension, and possibly jail. (If it’s not your first offence, then definitely jail if convicted.)

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Assaults and Threats

Assaults and Threats

The criminal offence of assault is the act of applying force intentionally, directly or indirectly, to another person without that person’s consent. It is also assault if you accost or impede another person, or beg, while openly carrying a weapon or an imitation weapon.

“Uttering Threats” is the offence committed when someone knowingly utters, conveys or causes any person to receive a threat: to cause death or bodily harm; to burn destroy or damage property; or, to kill poison or injure an animal belonging to any person.

There are many types of assault including:

The penalties will be dependent on the type and severity of the assault.

Domestic Assault

Domestic Assault

Domestic assault is how an assault against an intimate partner or family member is often referred to, although it is not an actual term found in the Criminal Code. It is considered to be a particularly serious type of assault because of the “breach of trust” that occurs when there is violence in such close and dependant relationships. The penalties vary depending upon the seriousness of the assault, but at the high end can include jail.

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Sex Assault

Sex Assault

Sex assault is an assault characterized by sexual actions that occur without the victim’s consent, for example, unwanted sexual touching, kissing, groping or intercourse. The penalties are very severe and include registering in and reporting to national and provincial sex offender registries.

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Internet Crimes

Internet Crimes

Internet crime, also known as cybercrime, is crime that occurs through the use of the internet and social media. Some examples of internet crime include child luring, impersonation, identity theft, cyber-bullying, child pornography and revenge porn. As the types of crimes that can occur online can vary widely, so do the penalties.

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Child Sex Assault

Child Sex Assault

Child sex assault is a sexual assault on a person under the age of 16 (see “Sex assault” above). Other related sexual offences involving children include, sexual interference, invitation to sexual touching, sexual exploitation, bestiality in presence of or by a child, and luring a child. The penalties are very severe and include mandatory jail sentences and registering in and reporting to national and provincial sex offender registries.

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Bail Hearings

Bail Hearings

For some offences some people who get arrested will not be released from the station after being processed. They will instead be held in custody for a bail hearing. The bail hearing will determine if this person can be permitted to be at liberty while the case is processed by the criminal justice system. If you are not successful at your bail hearing you will have to stay in jail—possibly for months—while your case is working its way through the court process, rather than being able to deal with your case “from the outside.” You only get one shot at a bail hearing.

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Dangerous Driving

Dangerous Driving

In the Criminal Code, this offence is actually called “Dangerous Operation” and it results when someone operates a vehicle in a manner that is dangerous to the public. This definition is admittedly very broad, but the charge is meant to apply to cases of really (dangerously) bad driving and it is a serious matter to be charged with this offence. The penalties are severe and can include a prohibition on driving and even jail.

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Driving While Prohibited

Driving While Prohibited

Driving while prohibited is the criminal offence of driving while under a court order not to drive because you were convicted of a previous criminal offence that carries a driving prohibition as one of its penalties, for example a drinking and driving offence. The penalties for this offence usually include jail and additional periods of prohibition on driving.

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Drugs

Drugs

Drug charges would involve the supplying, importing, exporting, growing, manufacturing, trafficking or possessing of those substances listed in the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA). The CDSA lists both hard and soft drugs, including heroin, cocaine, “magic mushrooms,” marijuana (in quantities above a certain amount) as well as other substances including precursors to listed drugs. Penalties vary depending on the type and amount of drugs as well as other surrounding circumstances. At the high end the penalties include lengthy jail sentences.

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Breaches

Breaches

In criminal law, a “breach” is a violation of a condition in a probation order or in a pre-sentence release (such as bail or a Promise to Appear with an undertaking). The breach itself is an additional criminal offence and generally results in serious penalties, often including jail.

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Weapons

Weapons

Weapons offences include: using firearms to harm others, possessing illegal firearms and unsafe handling of legally owned firearms. Other objects are also classified as weapons as for example brass knuckles or flick knives. An item that may have a perfectly legal use, such as a kitchen knife, can in some circumstances be considered a weapon. Convictions for weapons charges result in severe penalties (although recent amendments to the law have reduced the severity somewhat).

Break and Enter and Property Crimes

Break and Enter and Property Crimes

Break and enter is the crime of breaking and entering into a place with an intent to commit an indictable offence or actually committing an indictable offence in the place. It is a serious offence with serious consequences. If the break and enter is committed in relation to a dwelling-house, the person will be guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for life. Other property offences include arson, burglary, vandalism, theft of personal property, and motor vehicle theft. The penalties for these other offences will vary according to the type, severity and circumstances of the offence.

Young Offenders

Young Offenders

In Canada, criminal offences committed by young people between the ages of 12 and18, are dealt with under the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA). While the offences with which young people in this age group can be charged are the same as for adults, the processes of the criminal justice system and the potential consequences, are different for young people.

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Leave the Hard Work to Us

If you have been criminally charged in Brockville or in the surrounding area, and are looking for a criminal lawyer, the law firm of Aitken Robertson can help. Our team works hard to stay up-to-date on the latest developments in criminal law and has over 100 years of combined criminal law practice experience. And, we know the Brockville criminal court and its particular practices and procedures. Call for a 30-minute free consultation to talk to one of our Brockville criminal lawyers and let us show you how we can help you.

Our Brockville Area Team

Criminal Lawyer Richard Aitken

Richard Aitken

Managing Lawyer

Court Information for Criminal Offences in Brockville

Criminal offences that arise in Brockville and the surrounding areas are heard at the Brockville Courthouse located at:

41 Court House Square,
Brockville, ON,
K6V 7N3.

Both the Ontario Court of Justice and the Superior Court of Justice are in this building. The courthouse hours are from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm (closed on weekends and holidays).

Because of COVID-19, some criminal court matters were postponed and some are being dealt with by internet but the rules are changing constantly so to be sure, it’s best to inquire ahead of your court date and ask how your matter will be dealt with. You can contact the court by phone at 613-341-2800 and by email Brockville.OCJ.courts@ontario.ca. If you have a lawyer, your lawyer will be able to tell you what the current protocols are and will be able to take care of most of your court appearances on your behalf.

Most of the parking around the courthouse is metered street parking and the meters are the old-fashioned kind that only take change (not debit or credit cards) and only allow payment for two hours at a time. If you are willing to walk a little farther, you can find free street parking on some of the surrounding residential streets.

The courthouse sits in a residential area so there are no restaurants very close by, but Brockville is not a large city so you can drive to a restaurant in minutes, or if you have time, even take a pleasant walk to the historical downtown where many restaurants are located. The city has the usual fast-food places, such as McDonalds, Subway, Wendy’s, and Tim Horton’s. But if you have time for a sit-down meal, here are a few places that have earned high ratings on TripAdvisor:

  • 1000 Islands Restaurant & Pizzeria serving pizza as well as Italian, Greek, and Canadian cuisine. It is vegetarian friendly and has vegan and gluten free options.
  • Island Delight serving Chinese and Thai cuisine. It is vegetarian friendly.
  • Buell St. Bistro serving Mediterranean and market garden cuisine and featuring live jazz (check the website for dates to be announced). It is vegetarian friendly and has vegan and gluten free options.

A Quick Look at Brockville’s History

Brockville is a city located in eastern Ontario just south of the 401, on the banks of the St. Lawrence River. One of the oldest communities in the province, it was settled by colonists loyal to the British Crown—United Empire Loyalists—fleeing the American colonies after the war with Britain. The original village from which the city grew, was called Elizabethtown, but was later renamed Brockville, after the British general Isaac Brock who had been a hero of the War of 1812.

“Brockville became Ontario’s first incorporated self-governing town on January 28, 1832, two years before the town of Toronto.”1 Like so many early settlements in Ontario, its first industries consisted of a grist mill, tanneries, asheries and some wagon makers, in addition to tradesmen of various types.2 Eventually other industries followed, including shipbuilding. The first railway tunnel built in Canada is in Brockville and the coming of the railway contributed to the growth of the town. The tunnel passes right under the downtown core and is open to the public seven days a week, including statutory holidays, from spring to fall, usually starting on the Easter weekend. Admission is free but donations are accepted. For more information see: https://www.brockvillerailwaytunnel.com/faq.php

A Waterfront City

Brockville is in the area of the Thousand Islands and is a popular boating and scuba diving destination. There are several marinas in the area and boat cruises through the Thousand Islands are a popular tourist activity. The waters off Brockville provide “one of the best freshwater scuba diving locations in the world.”3 Divers can view the century old shipwrecks and artifacts that are found on the bottom of the St. Lawrence.

Is Brockville Safe?

In 2001, “’A World Health Organization Designation Collaborating Centre as a Safe Community’ was confirmed on Brockville, Ontario as the first such designation in Ontario, second in Canada, fourth in North America, and 58th globally.”4

To get a sense of how Brockville has fared more recently, you can look at the latest available annual report of the Brockville Police Services Board, which was for 2020—the pandemic year. In its section on “Criminal Offences” it declares that:

2020 was a year like no other. Overall we observed a reduction in many crimes including sexual assaults, assaults and criminal harassment. Unfortunately we did have an increase in the number of robberies. This statistic can be easily linked to the drug sub-culture and substance addiction.5

More current press releases do describe drug crimes, but also other crimes typical for any city in Ontario, including: domestic assault, firearm offences, mischief, credit card offences, assaults, fraud, impaired driving, probation breaches, stolen vehicles and fraud.6

From this laundry list of offences, it looks like Brockville, a community with a population of approximately 22, 000, is no more dangerous than any other city of comparable size in Ontario and appreciably safer than many large cities.

 

Footnotes

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brockville#History
  2. Ibid.
  3. https://brockvilletourism.com/things-to-do/outdoor/
  4. https://brockvillepolice.com/about-bps/who-designation/
  5. https://brockvillepolice.com/wp-content/uploads/2020-Annual-Report-web.pdf, at p. 9.
  6. https://brockvillepolice.com/news/

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