We began supporting Mr. M not after his initial charge of assault, but after his failure to comply charge. He had been charged with assault in the domestic context after a small argument with his girlfriend, during which she alleged he shoved her. He was released on a promise to appear before the court, and one of the conditions of the release was to avoid contact with the complainant.
Not long after the complainant herself initiated contact with Mr. M, phoning him late one night while intoxicated when she was locked out of her own home. During this meeting she became violent with Mr. M, who contacted family for assistance as well as the police. Afterwards she continued to text him, but he wisely did not respond. Unfortunately, even if the contact is initiated by the complainant, the contact between Mr. M and the complainant constituted a failure to comply with the conditions of the release and Mr. M received his 2nd charge. It was at this time he sought out legal counsel.
Mr. M contacted Aitken Robertson and was aided by Dan Lemaire, who agreed to speak with the Crown on his behalf about the undeserved charges for failure to comply, as well as the previous assault charges.
Prior to the failure to comply the Crown had considered dropping Mr. M’s charges if he would sign a peace bond and complete a domestic violence counselling program. After the failure to comply charges were laid he became concerned about losing this offer. Our goal would be to negotiate with the Crown to have the offer upheld and the failure to comply dropped.
One of Mr. M’s initial concerns was that he was unable to go to court at each of his scheduled times, as he worked full time in a trade. We quickly had him sign a form declaring us his agent, allowing us to appear in court on his behalf for most matters.
To secure the dropping of the failure to comply charges, we discussed with the Crown the prospect of Mr. M making a donation to a charity as a sign of good behaviour. Once the failure to comply was no longer on the table he would be free to return to the initial offer of a peace bond and counselling program.
The Crown agreed and following a $400 donation to a charity the failure to comply charges were dropped. A peace bond was drawn up by the Crown, and Mr. M signed it, agreeing to be of good behaviour for one year and to avoid contact with the complainant. We were able to prevent Mr. M missing any time at work by appearing on his behalf for all court dates up until the signing of the peace bond, which required he be present, and he was able to return to his promising career without concern of criminal sanctions.