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CASE DETAILS

Charge(s): Impaired & over 80, drugs
Location: Chatham, Ontario
Our Client(s): Mr. V
Year: 2019
Lawyer: Justin Marchand
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Please Note: Past results not predictive of future results.

The Background

Mr. V was in a restaurant and unhappy with his food order. After some argument with staff, staff called the police against Mr. V. The staff complained to police that Mr. V was impaired and driving. When police attended to the scene, Mr. V was located operating a motor vehicle. Mr. V was stopped and arrested by police because of impaired driving. A search of Mr. V’s vehicle found significant quantities of drugs. Mr. V was transported back to the Chatham police station. At the police station, police interrogated Mr. V and ultimately released him.

Crown Position

The Crown opposed any kind of resolution avoiding a criminal record, and they sought a conviction for the impaired charge and the drug charge.

The Goals

Avoid a criminal record if possible.

The Strategy

Litigation before setting a trial was focused on presenting issues to the Crown attorney(s), to convince the prosecution to substitute the charges so Mr. V could avoid a criminal record. The Crown attorney responsible for the impaired charge was different than the prosecutor for the drug charge, and so Mr. Marchand met with the prosecutors and a judge to discuss issues in the case and possible resolution. Mr. Marchand was able to get agreement from the prosecution to divert the drug charge, but not the impaired charge. The resolution discussions were not fully successful, and Mr. Marchand had to set a trial because no resolution could be reached to meet Mr. V’s goal of avoiding a criminal record. Mr. Marchand filed an application under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms prior to the trial dates.

The Results

Mr. V’s charges resolved on the first day of trial without Mr. V receiving a criminal record. Leading up to the trial, the Crown prosecution re-evaluated the strengths and weaknesses of the case against Mr. V. The prosecutors agreed to substitute Mr. V’s driving related charges for a Highway Traffic Act offence, and the drug charge was substituted for a minor criminal offence and Mr. V received an absolute discharge – the lowest possible sentence available to the court. Mr. V completely avoided a criminal record.

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