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PERTH CRIMINAL LAWYERS

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Aitken Robertson Can Defend Against Criminal Allegations in Perth and Lanark County

The criminal law firm of Aitken Robertson can help you if you have been charged in the Perth area with a criminal offence.
Following are some of the criminal offences that Aitken Robertson’s team has experience dealing with:

Drinking and Driving (Impaired Driving)

Drinking and Driving (Impaired Driving)

Driving or being in care or control of 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.)

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Assaults and Threats

Assaults and Threats

The criminal offence of assault is defined as 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 different 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 commonly referred to, although it is not an actual named offence in the Criminal Code. It is considered to be an especially 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, will often include weapons prohibitions and at the high end can include jail.

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Sex Assault

Sex Assault

Sex assault is an assault characterized by sexual acts 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, or “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

If you are arrested, you may be processed at the police station and then released to await your first court date. But you might not be released. You may instead be held in custody for a bail hearing, which if you’re lucky will occur the next day, but it might not. The bail hearing will determine if you can be permitted to be at liberty or should remain in jail during the time your case is being 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 occurs when someone operates a vehicle in a manner that is dangerous to the public. This definition is admittedly pretty broad, but the charge is meant to apply to cases of quite (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 previously convicted of a criminal offence that has 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. If you have a drug charge on your criminal record, you will be barred from entry into the U.S.

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Breaches

Breaches

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

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Weapons

Weapons

Weapons offences include firearm offences in which firearms are used to harm others, but also include possessing illegal firearms and unsafe handling of legally owned firearms. Some objects other than firearms are may also be considered weapons, including an object that may have a perfectly legal use, such as a kitchen knife. Some objects are specifically classified as prohibited weapons, as for example brass knuckles or flick knives. 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 always treated as serious offence and will carry serious consequences. If the break and enter is committed in relation to a dwelling-house, the person will be 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 and 18, are dealt with under the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA). Young people in this age group would be charged are the same offences as adults, but the processes of the criminal justice system and the potential consequences, are different for young people.

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Aitken Robertson | Criminal Lawyers in Perth

If you are facing criminal charges in Perth, Lanark County or in the surrounding area, the law firm of Aitken Robertson can help you. Aitken Robertson’s team of dedicated legal professionals have over 100 years of combined experience defending people in the Ontario criminal courts. Our lawyers and paralegals stay up-to-date on the latest developments in the by taking continuing legal education courses on a regular basis. Aitken Robertson’s lawyers even travel out of the country to get the best training available.

Call Aitken Robertson for a 30-minute free consultation to talk to one of the firm’s criminal lawyers in the Perth area and let us show you how we can help you.

Our Perth Area Team

Criminal Lawyer Richard Aitken

Richard Aitken

Managing Lawyer
Ottawa Criminal Lawyer - Virginia Dolinska

Virginia Dolinska

Sole Practitioner Lawyer Affiliated with Aitken Robertson
Roshni Gopaul - Criminal Defence Lawyer

Roshni Gopaul

Sole Practitioner Lawyer Affiliated with Aitken Robertson
Melanie Van Aarde - Paralegal

Melanie Van Aarde

Sole Practitioner Paralegal Affiliated with Aitken Robertson

Court Information for Criminal Offences in Perth

Criminal offences that arise in Perth and Lanark County, are heard at the Perth Courthouse located at: 43 Drummond St E, Perth, ON. Court office hours are Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 5:00 pm. Counter service hours at this time are 9 – 11 am and 2 – 4 pm, Monday to Friday. There is also a satellite criminal court in Smiths Falls, located at: 39 Chambers St. Rm 307 Smiths Falls ON.

Because of COVID-19, many criminal court matters were postponed and were being dealt with by internet. Normal procedures are resuming, but as the situation is changing, 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) 267-2021or by email at Perth.OCJ.courts@ontario.ca. If you have a lawyer, your lawyer will be able to tell you what the current rules for your court are and will be able to appear at most of your court appearances on your behalf.

Parking

There is free parking in a lot nearby the courthouse and also public parking on the street.

Food

If during your trip to the Perth Courthouse you have time to eat, Perth has all of the usual fast-food places, such as McDonalds and Dairy Queen but there are also a few restaurants that have earned good reviews that are not far from the courthouse. Here are a few:

  • Michael’s Table, serving North American fare such as sandwiches, burgers, steak, fish, ribs and chicken. Their full menu is available for dining-in or take-out.
  • Maximilian Restaurant, located in a heritage building alongside the Tay River, serving German and European cuisine, for example Wienerschnitzel and offering both a dine-in menu and a take-out menu.
  • Mex & Co., serving typical Mexican food such as fajitas and tacos. Many of their dishes are also available in vegetarian form and there are vegan and gluten-free options as well. There is outdoor waterfront setting. Offers dine-in and curbside pickup options.

Looking For a Criminal Lawyer in Perth and Lanark County?

The town of Perth in Lanark County Ontario is only 83 km (so about 45 minutes) southwest of the nation’s capital. So if you are driving to or from Ottawa on Highway 7, you’ll pass through part of it. But you’ll miss the really pretty part. If you head off 7 and go into the “business section” of town, you will be happy to find that the original downtown of the 1800s, with “heritage stone buildings and beautiful setting beside the Tay Canal remains much as it was built by the first settlers in Perth.”1

Founded in 1816, Perth was originally a military settlement established after the War of 1812 and many of the first settlers were military veterans from Canada as well as veterans from Europe who were offered land in return for their service.“For many years Perth was the military, judicial, political and social capital, not only of the County of Lanark, but of the whole of the Ottawa Valley . . . . “3  In fact, when Ottawa was still the town of Bytown, people from there “had to come to Perth for their law and justice, for the law courts of the whole great district were located there.”4 The courthouse, which was rebuilt after a fire in 1841, is still in use and is a heritage property.  Perth is also the place where the last fatal duel in Upper Canada took place.5

Horse lovers will know that Perth is near where the great Canadian show jumping horse Big Ben is buried and that it is where the life-size bronze statue of this horse and his equally famous rider, Ian Millar, is located. (Millar’s Millar Brooke Farm is nearby).

Things to Do in Perth

Perth’s lovely heritage downtown is full of boutiques and restaurants. The architecture alone is worth a look. The downtown is built on the island formed by a split in the Tay River that passes through Perth, adding to the charm of the town. Stewart Park located behind the beautiful Town Hall, “features gardens, bridges, walking paths and treed picnic areas along the Tay River.”6 Every summer this park hosts a free music festival with live music and vendors. For the active sort, heritage walking tours of the downtown as well as cycling tours of the surrounding areas and paddling tours of the Tay Canal are available: http://perthhs.org/tours.html

And it might be of interest to the really active, that Perth is also home to “Perth’s World Record Kilt Run.” This is a charity run in which the competitors all wear traditional Scottish kilts. (The name of the run refers to the fact that it is an official Guinness World record holder for number of participants.) Information about the event can be found here: http://www.perthkiltrun.ca/index.html

Crime in Perth

Perth is generally, a pretty safe place to live. A quick check of the webpage of the local online news page for Perthtends to show crimes like theft, break and enters, impaired driving and road rage. However, in March of 2022, there was also some reporting about a child sexual exploitation case in which a Perth man was charged and a murder case involving an accused from nearby Smiths Falls. While areavibes (a website that profiles communities and measures their livability) reports that in 2020 Perth’s crime rate was 15% above the national average,8 you can’t take their numbers simply at face value. As stated by the FBI commenting on such websites:

“These rankings, however, are merely a quick choice made by the data user; they provide no insight into many variables that mold the crime….Consequently, these rankings lead to simplistic and/or incomplete analyses that often create misleading perceptions…”9


Footnotes
  1. http://shop-heritage-perth.com/heritagetown.html
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perth,_Ontario
  3. Ibid.
  4. Ibid.
  5. Ibid.
  6. Ibid.
  7. https://www.insideottawavalley.com/lanark-news/crime/
  8. https://www.areavibes.com/perth-on/crime/
  9. https://wcti12.com/archive/accuracy-in-crime-reporting-websites-

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