Opening the doors to dialogue on criminal justiceSomeone told me Sunday, May 15, was for Christians, the feast of Pentecost.
Published in Web exclusive content
Monday, 02 May 2016 09:00

The surreal case of Lyle Howe

Photo: Harris Studio
Photo: Harris Studio
In 2012, less than two years into his fledgling career as a criminal defence lawyer, Lyle Howe found himself in a Halifax courtroom, one minute representing a client on fraud charges, then moments later appearing in his own defence, before the same judge, on charges that he drugged and sexually assaulted a 19-year-old woman.
Published in Features
Monday, 02 May 2016 09:00

The trouble with sex assault trials

The trouble with sex assault trialsIn an overview of the law of sexual assault and the need both to encourage reporting of this crime and to ensure that myths about complainants are not part of the analysis conducted by a trier of fact, Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin made these comments: “[T]he reality is that evidence of sexual conduct and reputation in itself cannot be regarded as logically probative of either the complainant’s credibility or consent . . . the old rules which permitted evidence of sexual conduct and condoned invalid inferences from it solely for these purposes have no place in our law.” The statements are not recent; they were made in 1991 and form part of her majority judgment for the Supreme Court of Canada in R v. Seaboyer.
Monday, 25 April 2016 09:00

In the crosshairs

In the crosshairsOn the morning of Oct. 17, 2012, David Potts got up as usual and went to his job as solicitor for the City of Oshawa as if it was any other day. As difficult as it might be for some to understand, it was important to him that he do that — even though the night before he found himself the target of a volatile abduction by a former municipal councillor who had held him at gunpoint for three terrifying hours.
Published in InHouse Cover Story
Monday, 04 April 2016 09:00

Police defender: Peter Brauti

Peter Brauti, second left, arrives at court with client Const. James Forcillo and his wife, accompanied by Toronto Police Association president Mike McCormack, left, on  April 22, 2014. Photo: Matthew Sherwood/National Post
Peter Brauti, second left, arrives at court with client Const. James Forcillo and his wife, accompanied by Toronto Police Association president Mike McCormack, left, on April 22, 2014. Photo: Matthew Sherwood/National Post
In a tense Toronto courtroom, defence lawyer Peter Brauti stood beside his ashen-faced client, Const. James Forcillo, to hear the verdicts in one of Canada’s most-watched police trials. Forcillo was charged with murder in the shooting of 18-year-old Sammy Yatim, armed with a switchblade when he confronted police on an empty Toronto streetcar in July 2013.
Published in Departments
Monday, 21 March 2016 09:00

Obviously hard to prove

Obviously hard to proveThere exists an overwhelming imbalance of power between the state and the individual.
Published in Web exclusive content
David Potts says he accepts his kidnapper’s apology and feels ‘justice was served.’  Photo: Jennifer Brown
David Potts says he accepts his kidnapper’s apology and feels ‘justice was served.’ Photo: Jennifer Brown
Former Oshawa, Ont., councillor Robert Lutczyk has been sentenced to eight years and four months in prison for the 2012 violent kidnapping of the city’s solicitor, David Potts.
Published in Latest News
The perfect time for a law commission revivalParliament is currently wrestling with the issue of physician-assisted dying. This is an issue that is often religious, perhaps cultural, but always legal. Now is the time that Parliament could benefit from the wisdom and experience of a revived law reform commission.
Published in Web exclusive content
Brian Radnoff says a letter of reference from an MP for someone before the courts could be seen as a member of the government trying to influence the court.
Brian Radnoff says a letter of reference from an MP for someone before the courts could be seen as a member of the government trying to influence the court.
Should a sitting member of Parliament be providing a letter of reference on behalf of someone who is awaiting sentencing for kidnapping the lawyer for the City of Oshawa?
Published in Latest News
Think Making a Murderer can’t happen in Canada? Think againThe super-popular Netflix docu-series Making a Murderer has taken popular culture by storm (some people — like me — have even been podcasting about it).
Published in Web exclusive content
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