A client of our firm pleaded guilty to two charges that had been brought against him – namely, being unlawfully in a dwelling-house under Section 349 (1) CCC and failing to comply with a condition of undertaking under Section 145 (5) b) CCC.
The subject had spent the day with his friends and, during the evening, they received information indicating that one of their acquaintances had been robbed. The police were notified of the event. They were then informed that the theft had been committed by someone they knew. My client and his accomplices decided as a group to pay that person a visit in order to recover the stolen property.
Once they had arrived on the premises, one of our client’s accomplices entered the apartment without the consent of the occupants. At that time, our client and his group of friends followed suit and entered the apartment. Once they were inside the apartment, one of our client’s friends decided to assault some of the occupants of the house with a metal handle.
It turned out that our client had played a passive role in the apartment. He had stayed at the entrance to the apartment and indicated when entering his guilty plea that he did not anticipate this violence and believed that the situation could have been resolved more easily.
Shortly after the offence, our client was found in the presence of one of his accomplices despite being prohibited from doing so, hence the breach of undertaking charge.
We requested the preparation of a pre-sentence report to inform the court of our client’s profile and his risk of recidivism.
During sentencing, the Crown requested a short prison sentence, while for our part, we requested a conditional discharge for our client. The stakes were therefore very high. We highlighted the very young age of our client, which showed that our client was immature, vulnerable, and less able to exercise moral judgment. Our client expressed regret for his act and, despite the violent actions of his accomplices, he had played a passive role in the apartment. We demonstrated that there had been many significant changes in our client’s life since the charges. He had completed a professional diploma and was destined for a successful career in construction.
We demonstrated that our client had no criminal record and that it would be in his best interests – without going against the public interest – to receive a conditional discharge. The court accepted our suggestion and our client received a discharge conditional on him performing 125 hours of community service within 12 months. Our client avoided a criminal record.