Recently, a client of our firm was charged with striking his ex-wife’s face following a dispute over their child. After returning from a very drunken night, the complainant, heavily intoxicated by alcohol, had woken our client up in the middle of the night and accused him of taking their 5-month-old daughter. The complainant had been very aggressive towards our client, and he defended himself by slapping her face with the palm of his hand on her nose.
During the trial, the prosecution offered us a conditional discharge in exchange for a guilty plea, since the victim was hesitating about testifying against our client. While an aggravating factor under the Criminal Code was involved, since the offence had taken place within the context of a domestic dispute, we received a discharge, because the value of our client’s guilty plea was extremely significant, since it avoided a trial for the victim and her 9-year-old daughter, who had been a witness to the event. Our client therefore avoided a criminal record.