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CASE DETAILS

Charge(s): Sexual assault
Location: Tri-Counties (Peterborough, Lindsay, Cobourg), Ontario
Our Client(s): Mr. K
Year: 2021
Lawyer/Paralegal: Richard Aitken
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Please Note: Past results not predictive of future results.

The Background

We were retained by our 81-year-old client, Mr. K, and his family regarding a number of allegations of sexual assault at a local park. The incidents received a great deal of press, and there was a significant fear in the community about women being safe. Although they were not the most serious of sex assaults (trying to hug and kiss), undoubtedly, they would still have been very traumatic for the women involved. The charges were also very upsetting for my client and his family.

The Goals

If at all possible, we wanted to be able to exercise some damage control here and to have Mr. K not be convicted.

The Strategy

Mr. K, being 81, had never had any issues with the law before. There were a number of possible explanations. Onset of dementia and confusion (our client’s health had been recently failing), and significant cultural issues (he was from a country quite different from Canada) were among them. Mr. K spoke no English at all.

I did not feel that Mr. K was any clear and present danger to anyone given that he was quite slow moving. But it would still have been upsetting to all the women this impacted–and to the wider community.

Our client was in Canada visiting family on a visitor’s visa. The easiest solution was to have him return to his home country once these charges were disposed of. Complicating matters, his passport had been seized by the police.

The Results

Ultimately, the Crown was content that the public interest was best served by our client entering into a peace bond, to stay away from that park and the women involved. I was able to confer with Immigration Canada and arrange for the passport to be returned so that he could return to his home and family there.

It felt good assisting this man and his family, especially the disgrace they would have felt (especially in their culture) if there had been a criminal record for their father. The common law peace bond lasted for twelve months. Should Mr. K decide he wishes to visit family again, in Canada, he would be able to–as he no longer had any outstanding charges or criminal record. Mr. K and his family were delighted with the result.

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