section 810.2(1)

INTRODUCTION AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION

Individuals can lay an information before a provincial court judge if they have reasonable grounds to fear that another person will commit a serious personal injury offence.

SECTION WORDING

810.2(1) Any person who fears on reasonable grounds that another person will commit a serious personal injury offence, as that expression is defined in section 752, may, with the consent of the Attorney General, lay an information before a provincial court judge, whether or not the person or persons in respect of whom it is feared that the offence will be committed are named.

EXPLANATION

Section 810.2(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a provision that allows any person who has reasonable grounds to believe that another person may commit a serious personal injury offence to make an application to a provincial court judge for a peace bond. A "serious personal injury offence" is defined in section 752 of the Criminal Code as an offence that would likely cause bodily harm, endanger the life of another person, or involve the use of a firearm. The purpose of this provision is to allow individuals to take proactive steps to protect themselves or others from potential harm. The process begins with an individual laying an information before a provincial court judge, which is essentially a sworn statement outlining their fears and reasons for believing that a serious personal injury offence may be committed. The Attorney General must also consent to the process before the judge can issue a peace bond. If the judge is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to fear that a serious personal injury offence may be committed, they may order the individual who is believed to pose a risk to enter into a peace bond. This means that the person must promise to keep the peace and be of good behavior for a specific period of time (up to 12 months), and may also be required to abide by certain conditions, such as staying away from certain individuals or places. This process is designed to provide a measure of protection for those who fear for their safety or the safety of others, without requiring criminal charges to be laid or a trial to take place.

COMMENTARY

Section 810.2(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada is an important tool in preventing serious personal injury offences from occurring. This provision allows any person who has a reasonable fear that someone else will commit such an offence to lay an information before a provincial court judge, with the consent of the Attorney General. A serious personal injury offence is defined in section 752 of the Criminal Code as an offence that involves the use or attempted use of violence against another person, or that endangers or threatens to endanger the life or safety of another person. Examples of such offences include assault, sexual assault, and homicide. These offences are among the most serious in the Criminal Code and carry significant penalties upon conviction. The purpose of section 810.2(1) is to provide a means for individuals who fear for their safety or the safety of others to take preemptive action before an offence occurs. This provision is particularly useful in situations where there is a history of violence or threats of violence, or where an individual has reason to believe that someone else is planning to commit an offence. It allows the individual to seek a court order that imposes conditions on the person they fear, to prevent them from carrying out the offence. The conditions that may be imposed by a judge under section 810.2(1) can be quite broad and may include, for example, orders to stay away from certain individuals or places, to refrain from using drugs or alcohol, or to surrender weapons. Other conditions may be imposed as deemed necessary by the judge to ensure the safety of the individuals at risk. In order to obtain a court order under this section of the Criminal Code, the person seeking the order must provide evidence to the judge that raises a reasonable suspicion that the person they fear will commit a serious personal injury offence. This evidence may include, for example, past incidents of violence or threats, statements made by the individual indicating an intention to commit an offence, or other evidence that suggests the individual poses a risk. The fact that any person can lay an information before a provincial court judge under section 810.2(1) is significant. This provision gives victims of potential serious personal injury offences the power to take action to protect themselves or others. It does not require them to wait for the police or other authorities to intervene. This can be particularly useful in situations where victims may feel reluctant or unable to involve law enforcement. However, there are some potential drawbacks to this provision. First, it relies on the individual seeking the order to provide evidence and initiate the process. This may be difficult or intimidating for some individuals, particularly if they are fearful or vulnerable. Second, the provision does not guarantee a court order will be granted. This means that some individuals who pose a risk may not be subject to any conditions, which could leave victims feeling vulnerable and unprotected. In conclusion, section 810.2(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada serves an important purpose in preventing serious personal injury offences from occurring. It empowers individuals who fear for their safety or the safety of others to take action to protect themselves. However, it is important to recognize that this provision has limitations and may not be effective in all cases. Ongoing efforts are needed to ensure that individuals are aware of their rights under this provision and to provide them with the support they need to take action when necessary.

STRATEGY

Section 810.2(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada, commonly referred to as the "peace bond" provision, is a powerful tool for individuals who fear that they may become victims of serious personal injury offences. This provision allows any person who has a reasonable apprehension that such an offence may be committed against them to apply to a provincial court judge for a peace bond that would require the person subject to the application to keep the peace and be of good behavior. While this provision can be used by anyone, it is particularly useful for victims of domestic violence and other forms of interpersonal violence. However, applying for a peace bond requires careful consideration of the specific circumstances and legal strategies that can be employed to achieve the desired outcome. The first step in applying for a peace bond is to gather evidence of the fear of violence. This can include threatening statements or actions, prior incidents of violence, or witness testimony. It is important to gather as much evidence as possible to present a strong case to the judge. Another strategic consideration is the decision of whether to name the person who is the subject of the application. In some cases, it may be safer not to name the person and instead refer to them as "John or Jane Doe." This can help to protect the applicant's safety and privacy, and it may also prevent the subject from becoming more aggressive. The next consideration is whether to seek support from victim services organizations or to hire a lawyer. Victim services organizations can provide emotional support and help the applicant navigate the legal system. Hiring a lawyer can also be beneficial, as they can provide legal advice, help to gather evidence, and advocate on behalf of the applicant. It is also important to consider the potential consequences of applying for a peace bond. If the peace bond is granted, the person subject to the application will have to comply with the conditions of the bond. However, if they do not comply, they could face a criminal charge and potentially be incarcerated. Alternatively, if the peace bond is not granted, the applicant may be at increased risk of violence. Additionally, if the applicant's fears are not taken seriously by the judge, they may feel discouraged and may not seek further assistance. Overall, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to applying for a peace bond. It is important to carefully consider the specific circumstances, gather evidence, and seek support from victim services organizations or legal professionals. By taking these strategic steps, applicants can increase their chances of obtaining a peace bond and reducing the risk of violence.