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City: Toronto, Ontario
Year: 2018
Our Client: Mr. B
Complainant: Ms. C. & Toronto Police Service
Charge(s): Uttering Threats
Lawyer: Justin Marchand
Criminal Lawyer Justin Marchand
Learn About Justin Marchand

Case Study: Charges Withdrawn for Peace Bond – Uttering Threats

Background Allegations

Mr. B. was clear with us from the beginning that he’d done nothing wrong and was innocent of the charges laid against him. He had been in a relationship with Ms. C. for over a year and it had gotten difficult. Ms. C. claimed she had become pregnant with Mr. B.’s baby, although Mr. B. disputed that she was pregnant at all.

Ms. C. claimed that the incident involved threatening phone calls from Mr. B. and his family regarding her pregnancy. She alleges that they attempted to intimidate her to abort her pregnancy.

Mr. B. and his family dispute this and allege that Ms. C. has been harassing Mr. B. through text messages and phone calls. He claimed the harassment became so frequent he had to change his telephone number, but that she found his new number and began calling both it and his work number. He provided us with screenshots of the harassing text messages he received and asked us to help clear him of the uttering threats charges.

Goal

During his meeting with Justin Marchand, Mr. B. was adamant that he did not want to take a plea deal or sign a peace bond; he wanted the charges completely withdrawn because he was innocent. Justin explained to Mr. B. that he would discuss withdrawal of the charges with the Crown, but that a complete withdrawal might not happen and in the alternative, a common-law peace bond would result in the charges being withdrawn. Mr. B. agreed that this would be a good alternative.

Overall, Mr. B. wanted to avoid having this charge on his record but also wanted to avoid a costly and lengthy trial. Our goal would be to have the charges dropped through negotiations with the Crown.

The Strategy

Justin set to work reviewing the text messages and phone call history between Mr. B. and Ms. C. in preparation for a meeting with the Crown. The plan was to assemble a book of evidence that showed Mr. B. was of good character and that Ms. C. had been harassing him. To complete this we submitted an “O’Connor Application”, which if successful would have the courts compel a third party to release information they had for our use. Our interest was in the telephone records that would give us access to the texts from Ms. C. that Mr. B. had deleted, as well as showing that the harassing phone calls from various phone numbers originated from Ms. C.

We would provide the Crown Attorney with this book of evidence before a meeting so that we could push for a withdrawal of the charges.

The Result

The Crown agreed to a common law peace bond. While it was not Mr. B.’s ideal goal, it did result in a withdrawal of the charges in exchange for an agreement to be of good behaviour. We were able to resolve the issue before a trial, as he wanted, and he was able to present his side of the story to the Crown successfully, showing that he was a victim of harassment in the situation. We sent our final letter to Mr. B. informing him that the results had been finalized, satisfied that we’d helped an innocent man avoid wrongful punishment.

Please Note: Past results not predictive of future results.

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