Criminal Offences. Reasons for Crime. Several factors have been found to be related to the cause of criminal behaviour. Can you name some? Research has shown that the factors listed below have impact on criminal behaviour. Poverty Recidivism (repeat offenders) Emotional Stress
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Several factors have been found to be related to the cause of criminal behaviour. Can you name some?
Research has shown that the factors listed below have impact on criminal behaviour.
Rank the above factors in terms of their significance in contributing to criminal behaviour.
Connie has been charged with theft of CDs worth $100. She has never been arrested before and has a steady job. In this case, the Crown may decide to proceed on a summary basis and receive a light penalty such as a fine. What might this be suitable?
Section 334 of the C.C.C. states:
…everyone who commits theft
(i) of an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years, or
(ii) of an offence punishable on summary conviction, where the value of what is stolen does not exceed five thousand dollars.
In Canada about 1 in 10 people have a criminal record
The C.C.C. defines homicide as:
222. (1) A person commits homicide when directly or indirectly, by any means, he causes the death of a human being.
Two types of homicide:
b) Non-culpable: a killing for which the accused cannot be held legally responsible, such as a death caused by an unforeseeable accident.
Punishment: Life in prison; no chance of parole for 25 years
Sentence:Life in prison; no chance of parole for at least 10 years
Infanticide occurs when a mother kills her new born child. This is very rare in Canada
All 3 of the following circumstances must be present for the crime to be considered infanticide:
a) the accused must be the natural mother of the victim
b) the victim must be less than 12 months old
c) at the time of the killing, the accused must have been suffering from a mental disturbance caused by not being able to recover from giving birth to the victim
Nelson and Angelo started fighting in the Flaming Onion Tavern. Nelson knocked Angelo backward with a blow to the jaw, and Angelo hit his head on a corner of a pool table. He died later that night from internal bleeding by a severe concussion. Nelson had wanted to hurt Angelo, but he did not mean to kill him. Nevertheless, Angelo died as a direct result of Nelson’s wrongful act. The police arrested him. Can they charge him with murder? Explain.
Section 234 of the C.C.C. defines manslaughter as:
Any homicide that cannot be classified as murder
Example: Maria is speeding and loses control of her car and kills a pedestrian. Although she did not mean to kill the pedestrian, she should have recognized that speeding could physically harm or kill someone.
Did the victim do something so insulting or outrageous that it caused the accused to lose self-control?
Assault is the most common form of violent crime. In 1999, 75% of all cases of violent crimes in Canada were assault related.
Level 1 assault is a hybrid offence- maximum penalty 5 years in prison
Any one of the following actions:
An Angus Reid survey recently noted that 16% of Canadians thought it should be a criminal offence for a parent to spank a child. Men and women equally opposed making spanking a criminal offence.
Should it be a criminal offence for a parent to spank a child?
1)Do you agree with the Judge’s decision and sentence in this case?
In Texas, some sex offenders have been ordered to post signs declaring their whereabouts, such as “Danger: Registered Sex Offender Lives Here.”
Texas law also requires the publication of sex offenders’ pictures and addresses. In Canada, police sometimes warn the public that a sexual offender has moved into an area.
Consent is a valid defence to a charge of sexual assault if the accused person had an honest and reasonable belief that the victim was consenting to sexual contact.
However, consent cannot be used as a defence in 3 instances:
According to the Criminal Code, what is the BAC limit (blood alcohol concentration) above which it is forbidden to drive a vehicle?A. 0.08%B. 0.8%C. 0.008%D. 0.88%
Lending your driver's licence to someone else is: (blood alcohol concentration) above which it is forbidden to drive a vehicle?A. permitted in cases of emergencyB. permitted if that person can drive safelyC. inadvisable and illegalD. possible only if that person already has a driver's licence, but forgot it at home
When a school bus stops with its red signal lights flashing, the law requires drivers to:A. stop until the bus proceeds or the signal lights are deactivatedB. to do as they please as long as they tap the hornC. wait for approaching vehicles to passD. slow down and then be extra careful while passing
On a one-way road, if a lane is closed, who should be given the right-of-way?A. the first driver to signal his or her intentionsB. the driver on the closed laneC. the driver on the open laneD. the first driver to reach the open space next to the obstacle
When towing a trailer on a public road, what is illegal to transport in the trailer?A. passengersB. explosivesC. firearmsD. flammable materials
Most vehicle offences are things like speeding or failing to stop at a red light. As a result, most are not addressed in the Criminal Code. You simply get a fine and the matter is dealt with. (Quasi Criminal)
However, some offences are considered serious which are contained in the Criminal Code.
To convict an accused of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, the Crown must prove:
causing bodily injury = maximum 10 years
causing death = maximum life.
Proof that a person is impaired can come from a number of sources:
If police have reasonable and probable grounds to believe that someone is impaired and operating a motor vehicle within the last 3 hours, they can demand a breath and/or blood test.
Driving while impaired and refusing to provide a breath/blood sample are hybrid offences. The severity of the punishment increases for subsequent offences.
Impaired driving causing bodily harm carries a maximum sentence of 10 years and causing death carries a maximum of life in prison.
Colour of Right:
The honest belief that a person owns something or has permission to use an item
The taking of property, permanently or temporarily, without the owner’s permission.
Suppose Sally borrows a car from her friend Mohammed. She tells Mohammed she is going to the mall and will return the car in three hours. At the mall, Sally meets another friend, Naya, who lives out of town. Sall y gives Naya a ride home in Mohammed’s car and then stays with her for a couple of days. On the third day, she tries to return Mohammed’s car but is stopped by a police officer who charges her with theft. Sally had permission to use Mohammed’s car- has she committed an act of theft?
Sentencing for theft depends on the value of the goods stolen.
Theft Over: the indictable offences of stealing goods worth over $5000
Theft Under: the hybrid offence of stealing goods worth under $5000
* Identity Theft Video
According to Stats Canada, in 1997 approximately 52% of robberies involved the use of a weapon.
While hunting deer with several companions in northern Ontario, it begins to snow. Mario becomes separated from the others and loses all sense of direction as the wind picks up and creates a whiteout. He stumbles upon a vacant cottage, kicks open the door, and takes shelter until the storm blows over.
Is Mario guilty of breaking and entering?
entering into a place but also
having the intent to commit an
indictable offence once inside.
The C.C.C. treats all B&E’s as serious crimes and the penalties can be heavy.
Pierre and Matthew were drinking at a local restaurant. On their way home, they rolled a tree trunk onto the railroad tracks. The next morning, the train engineer spotted the tree and was able to stop the train before it hit the obstruction. Even though no one was killed or injured, Pierre and Matthew could be charged with ____________.
So…in the case of Pierre and Matthew; did they endanger a person’s life by placing the tree trunk on the tracks?
These are all examples of ____________.
Fraud: intentionally deceiving someone in order to cause a loss of property, money or service. In order to convict a person of fraud, the Crown must prove that the accused purposely intended to deceive.
Example#1: If fraud is valued at less than $5000:
the Crown can charge the accused with either a summary offence punishable by a fine or an indictable offence with a maximum punishment of two years in prison.
Example #2: If fraud is valued at more than $5000:
it is an indictable offence with a maximum punishment of 10 years in prison.
The act of prostitution itself is not a criminal offence; what is criminal is the act of soliciting (communicating for the purpose of prostitution).
Prostitution: usually refers to the act of engaging in sexual services for money.
Section 213 (1) makes it clear that either the prostitute or client can be charged with soliciting if, in a place open to public view, he or she:
Bawdy House: is a place kept, occupied, or used by a person for the purpose of prostitution or the practice of indecent acts.
In the above situations, fingerprints or photographs are not taken, and the offender will not acquire a criminal record. Consequences are usually a fine and/or rehabilitation program.
Both carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison; 14 years if the prostitute is under 18.
This is most commonly enforced against “pimps” living off the income of street prostitutes.
George offered a plainclothes police officer money for sex in a local tavern.
Could George charged with soliciting?
Yes, because the transaction took place in a public place.
Gambling itself is not a criminal offence; but offences can be committed in relation to gambling.
There are exceptions to this. For example, people getting together to play cards for money is fine as long as it is not for the reason for the host to make profit. Horserace betting is allowed if the track has gained government approval and the operators pay the government a % of the money that customers bet.
Possession: The state of having knowledge of and control over something
Jake held a grudge against Charles. He gave Charles a package of white powder and told him it was foot powder, when it was actually low-grade heroin. After Charles left, Jake called Crime Stoppers with a “tip” that Charles was carrying drugs.
Can Charles be charged with possession?
1) The person in possession must know what the item is and have some measure of control over it.
Jenny placed an ounce of marijuana in Celeste’s gym bag. School authorities searched the bag, found the drug, and called the police.
Who can be charged?
Jenny was charged with possession of a controlled substance, even though the marijuana was found in the other girl’s bag.
2) A person may be found guilty of possession even if he or she gave the item in question to another person.
Dawna and Carla were going to a party when Dawna stopped to pick up several capsules of ecstasy. She told Carla what she was doing and Carla offered no objection she just waited for her friend.
If the police stopped these two on their way to the party and found the capsules, could either be charged with possession?
Even though the drugs did not belong to Carla and she was not taking them herself, she still could have been charged with possession on the basis of consent.
Keep in mind that “consent” can be broadly interpreted. It could mean that Carla gave “express consent” by saying out loud that Dawna’s possession of the drugs was all right with her. It could also mean that she gave “implied consent” because although she knew about the drugs, she did nothing to remove herself from the situation.
3) A person can be actual possession, as long as the person knows about it and consents to its possession by someone else.
You and three (3) of your friends are hanging out at David’s house. David grabs a joint and lights it up, passing it around the group. Everyone takes a puff. Just at that time, the police show up with a warrant to search the property and they spot the joint being smoked. Is David the only person to get charged and convicted?
David’s Mom comes out of the kitchen and tells the police to leave her child alone- he’s not hurting anyone. The police then charge her. What with and why?
1st Offence: (maximum) $1000 or 6 months in prison
2nd Offence: (maximum) $2000 or 1 year in prison
The penalties range from 18 months to 7 years depending on the substance.
“The offence of trafficking is taken extremely seriously by both the courts and the public…It goes without saying that someone branded as a ‘trafficker’ is held in extremely low regard by the public.”
Trafficking: to sell, give, administer, transport, send, deliver or distribute a controlled substance; to sell an authorization for a controlled substance.
* Merely giving drugs to another person constitutes trafficking- no profit or motive for profit is necessary.
Possession for the purpose of trafficking: by both the courts and the public…It goes without saying that someone branded as a ‘trafficker’ is held in extremely low regard by the public.” The Crown must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused possessed the controlled substance with the intention of trafficking.
Intention can be established in a number of ways:
See Chart Page 243
Does it really matter if people use illegal drugs or not?
Does it really matter if they are only using while NOT at work and only on their free time?
Consider the following occupations:
Should drug testing be a condition of employment for the above occupations? Which ones? Why or why not?