The article by Jesse Ferreras (2018) published in the Global News website delineates on the crime rates in Canada. By first perusing through the section, it is clear that the writer, Ferreras (2018) focuses on crime rates in particular cities. The comparison can be seen to determine which cities are crime-prone and which are not as well as which cities are determined to have more crime rates as compared to the others. However, from in-depth analysis, it is evident that Ferreras (2018) is building a theoretical perspective as to why crime rates in regions such as Red Deer, Alta Edmonton, Regina, Winnipeg, and Saskatoon are prone to crime in general in Canada. His ideology lies in the population aspects of those living within the areas. For instance, Ferreras (2018) theorizes that people around the city are mostly workers and small business individuals. As a result, the police perspective is that such individuals are quick to adopt the crime-mentality. In comparison to the class notes, the message concurs with what Ferreras (2018) is trying to deduce. That a specific demographic of people have common types of crimes committed around them.
An article by Paperny (2017) explains the occurrences in Canadian prisons concerning the number of convicts and detainees within the jails. At first glance, the article appears to discuss the reason as to why prisoners in Canadian jails are dying at alarming rates. This is evident through the title of the article (Paperny, 2017). Nonetheless, a critical review of the newspaper article indicates that the writer wants to highlight the plight of the detainees in Canadian prisons while awaiting trial or bail. Paperny (2017) expounds on the various elements of Canadian prisons and what lies underneath which, the public is blinded from the alarming statistics of deaths. The writer endorses Reuters as the statistical oversight for the shocking rates of deaths among convicts in Canadian prisons. In an attempted interview with provincial governments to try and understand why the phenomenon is still occurring, there was no reply and citations of ‘privacy concerns’ were the excuses provided. In the write-up, Paperny (2017) indicates that 56% of the detainees in Canadian prisons are inmates awaiting trial within which 65% have been found dead. The class notes on prison statistics and crime rates in Canada deduce that there is no link between the two. Nevertheless, there is a need to address the number of prisoners in Canadian jails due to the revelation brought up by Paperny (2017) on death rates of prisoners. It is clear, that whether a person is innocent or not, they suffer the same consequence.
Canadian criminal law is extensive, complex and interpretable. According to an article by Chua (2014), the report, at first glimpse, explains about child protection rights under Canadian law. It stipulates that any criminal factors such as alleged predator and international law on criminal prosecution are contained within the Canadian criminal code. A further interpretation of the article, Chua (2014) extrapolates that Canadian criminal law is expansive and does not confine to certain territorial subjects. It is purely procedural when it comes to convicting criminals. Besides, Chua (2014) advocates that Canadian criminal law is susceptible to criminal law for those who have also committed atrocities in other countries are deemed for extradition. Compared to the class notes, there are two types of criminal acts in Canada. There are substantive laws which elucidate on the rights and obligations that members of the society are required to adhere to including what is acceptable to the community and its members. Inherently, Chua (2014) demonstrates that the predator accused of child pornography and distribution of child pornography is a criminal in the eyes of the law. These are considered actual crimes in Canada and are liable for punishment.
An article published in the National Post in January 2018 by Edmiston, Hrvatin, and Arnold, highlights the life of a serial killer known as Bruce MacArthur. From a glimpse, it is evident that a serial killer was discovered in Toronto and his story based on his background and how he was found would be told. But, due to the enlighten I have received throughout the course, I have come to read between the lines to understand how the law works. Borrowing information from the class notes, principles in crime are marked by two aspects: actus reus and mens rea. The former is denoted as ‘evil act’ while the latter, ‘guilt or evil mind.’ Under criminal law, a person commits a crime because they choose to do and if they committed the crime, they are accountable for the crime and can be punished. But the underlying factor is that crime can take time to be noticed and that is where the law and the law enforcers merge. Take the case of Bruce McAruthur, Edmiston, Hrvatin, and Arnold (2018) indicate that a series of connections since the day Bruce committed an offense were pieced together to ensure that there is a pattern. To be clear, a serial killer tends to commit the same crime over and over again. But there has to be a trigger. In Bruce’s case, he was prone to attack men of gay sexualities which were considered his modus operandum. Thus, compared to the class notes, Bruce showed tendencies to be evil and commit a crime at the same time with the numerous bodies that were found in his backyard.
An article by Donato (2018) defines what community policing in Canada is. In the article, from a stone-throw distance, seems to describe the aspects of policing strategies that are used by Canadian police. In the report, further analysis discloses that there are levels of policing in Canada. Community policing according to Donato (2018) is based on the need to provide public safety which is entirely different from what the police are required to do daily. Community policing is about shifting the priority of keeping society safe to the members of the organization. This controls both the traditional and modern ways of keeping the community safe (Donato, 2018). According to the class notes, there are different levels of policing in Canada. The known ones are federal, provincial and municipal policing. There is no mention of community policing which according to the article by Donato (2018) has become an increasing trend among the municipal police. The idea is to ensure that society partakes in peacekeeping.
For the federal level, there is the Royal Canadian Mounted Police where 60% of the police force is under contract policing serving under provincial and municipal levels. As for the rural policing, 15% account for the police in the workforce who are employed under provincial forces. For the municipal police, the police force made up 66% of the working police which is considered to be the most significant moving force in law enforcement.
The Canadian police are granted authority and power which supersedes that of an average citizen. It is hoped that the police will use the potential for the good of the people and protect them from any evil. Based on the article published by The Guardian, the article discusses the power that the police use in restraining an excessive force in perpetrators. In most cases, police are deemed suspects in their duties where numerous reports indicate that the police have used their power to harm others. But, in this article, Kassam (2018) suggests that the police in this story was dubbed a hero for not exercising power and used professional skills to take down a criminal who ran over ten civilians using his van and was armed and considered dangerous. There was a video that was uploaded on the newspaper’s online website that showed how the police restrained the need to start shooting in broad daylight which would be considered as dangerous due to the number of civilians.
According to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom, the police are provided with powers which are limited in their line of duty. In most cases, according to the class notes, the authorities are often abused and cause serious harm to the civilians around. A police officer is deemed a hero when he can restrain themselves from using too much force. Kassam (2018) describes a police officer who was able to selectively investigate the situation and deem that using too much energy would result in too many casualties on top of those who were injured. The laws and regulations indicate that a police officer should do what is necessary and ensure that every circumstance within the situation is accounted for before exercising authority and power.
The Supreme court system in Canada is considered as the highest-ranking court in the land. According to an article by Fine (2018), the article seems to discuss the supreme court and its undertakings outside its ordinary jurisdictions. Fine (2018), from an analytical point of view of the section, indicates that the supreme court is usually based in one area from which different cases are heard. Toronto is the headquarters of the supreme court. But, with the recent upheaval of the integrity and respect for the courts, the Chief Justice, Richard Wagner, decided to make the court mobile. According to Fine (2018), the idea was to restore the balance of hope and respect that was being lost among the people. The first stop of the Supreme Court’s mobile court case was to head to Ottawa.
The class notes indicate that the supreme court is the highest court in the land. Its primary roles and responsibilities are to operate as the court of ‘last resort.’ It serves to hear the cases that have been rejected in high courts, and they are considered as the final decision. In Canada, the court contains a total of nine judges which as determined by Fine (2018), the judges come from different regions in Canada. For instance, they can come from Quebec, Ontario or Ottawa. The reputation of the Supreme Court has been declining over the years due to the court cases that have favored the rich and not the ordinary people.
In Canada, there are trial processes that are necessary before any court case is handed over to the Supreme Court. According to an article by Mulgrew (2017), the Supreme Court of Canada indicated that magistrates should conduct trial deadlines which entail the management of proceedings as dictated in the legal complacency law. Based on the article, it is clear that the courts’ have a specific procedural process that needs to be undertaken to safeguard the victims of the cases. However, the article by Mulgrew (2017) states otherwise that magistrates at the lower courts are not conducting their due diligence in court cases.
According to the class notes, the court system in Canada operates in certain aspects which are monumental is interpreting the law. This entail conducting a preliminary inquiry whether from a provincial court judge or another superior court before the case is tossed to the supreme court. A preliminary investigation is similar to experimental evidence that is presented to a judge where no verdict is rendered just hearings. Based on the article by Mulgrew (2017) the bone of contention is that magistrates are not conducting their due diligence when it comes to court cases. In most scenarios, the attorney general, five to be precise, have had to intervene on such instances in which the magistrates did not render a hearing. For example, the court cases were not heard, and courts never pronounced the justification of the delay.
An article by Fraser (2018) discusses a criminal case concerning a landlord who sexually assaulted a female tenant and the judge involved with the case sentenced him for two years. From a glimpse, the article seems to discuss in length the details of the situation with little admission as to the procedure involved in declaring a sentence in Canada. However, further analysis of the article gives a detailed account as to the events that led to the discovery of the offense. It turns out that the landlord forced his way into the tenant’s abode and assaulted her several times before leaving. The individual was sober while committing the crime. According to the proceedings of the courts, the prosecutor indicated that the culprit’s actions have moral repercussions. Judges take into account the events, moral character and the testimonies of the victims, culprit and any other witness to gauge the sentence duration.
According to the class notes in Unit 6 on sentencing, a judge is the only individual in court who can guarantee the sentencing period of any culprit. This is irrespective of whether a jury is present in the court case or not. A judge is considered to have the highest power within the courts to determine the sentencing. Similar references are made in Fraser’s article (2018) published in Vancouver Sun. in the court case, the judge indicated that the details of the victim not to be disclosed and this can improve the sentencing of the perpetrator. When deciding a sentence, the judge often takes into consideration the attorney’s perception of their clients or the prosecutor’s arguments.
An article published in the Global News website by Campbell (2018) documents a story about a mother who admitted to leaving her child in freezing care outside a bar in Lethbridge. First glance of the article, it is clear that the writer wants to expound on the events that led to the mother to commit such a horrifying act. The title of the article is enough to describe the details of the case. Further analysis of the material provides an account of the types of sentencing in Canada based on the ruling of a judge according to the court case details.
Sentencing, according to the class course notes, is a judicial determination of a legal sanction that is imposed on a perpetrator found guilty of what they engaged in before any arrest. Types of sentencing include imprisonment, fines, restitution, community services as well as probation among others. The details of the court case as explained by Campbell (2018) are economical with the details but, it is clear that the extremity of the situation, considering a minor was involved, would be taken seriously. In such scenarios, the person is deemed to be dangerous to the community as is placed under police custody. Campbell (2018) further indicates that the mother, whose name was not revealed to protect the identity of the son, would no longer have custodial rights to her child. The state takes up such rights in such events.
An article written by Malone (2017) expounds on the issues facing offenders incarcerated in Canadian prisons. Initially, the article seems to discuss the problems facing prisoners in jail as well as prisons and what their plight is considering the title of the article. Nonetheless, a closer look at the report indicates that most of the prisoners in Canadian jails do not have rights in entirety. This means that, despite being human, some of the reasons are limited and are under the rule of the state. But, according to the class notes, prisoners are considered humans, and there are reform programs that ensure that the offenders are prepared to account for their time in prison. For instance, the Auburn system was designed to help the convicted criminals in reformation which entailed the means of keeping them busy during their incarceration.
However, despite the need to keep them busy, there is a human need for compassion as well as contentment. For women in prison, sometimes they are treated similarly to men. According to Malone (2017), this is inconsiderate since women sometimes have children while in prison. The idea of not having time to handle their children, according to Malone (2017) is, and there is a need to put this issue under review. Based on the class notes, there is a lot to be desired when it comes to prison matters including children rights. As such, there is a need to expound on prison matters in Canada.
An article by Monkman (2018) delineates on the incarceration issues facing Canadian citizens in the country. To be precise, based on the article, the writer explains the incarceration rates surrounding minority groups or rather, indigenous groups in the country. The article is based on an interview conducted by the CBC news concerning previous convicts of different diversities. They explain their issues and how they landed in prison. By looking at their stories, the reason as to why people go to jail are myriad and thus can increase the rate of incarcerations in the country. The article proves that there is an alarming increase in the number of people who are going to jail or having being sentenced for a very long time.
In comparison to the class notes, Canada’s incarceration rates are not as high as America’s but, it is increasing. There is no concrete research to determine why this is becoming a trend or a phenomenon, but it is clear that the issue is alarming. Monkman (2018) shows that the rates are increasing and this is becoming a more complex issue that needs to be addressed. Nonetheless, the article also defines that children are increasingly being incarcerated in Canada compared to the past which is also considered, according to Monkman (2018) a need-to-assess issue.
Canadian prisoners are never really prepared for release as soon as their sentence or parole is due according to Whittington (2015). The newspaper article reviews issues that surround incarcerated individuals who think that the outside world is not ready for them. The irony is that according to Whittington (2015) the individuals are known to undergo reformed programs that ensure they are well suited and adjusted for prison life, but, they are not prepared for their outside world. The article further explains that different rehabilitation centers exist for different released individuals ranging from those under conditional release and probation as well as parole.
Class noted indicates that conditional release is where an inmate is allowed to go back into society due to their behavior of ethical conduct. In most cases, the individuals are not quickly assimilated into the culture and have to undergo an ‘incubation’ period. Whittington (2015) determines that the process can be excruciating for the released and there needs to be a reformed system for them. This will help improve their introduction back to society or for those who break their terms of release back in to prison.
The article published in Globe and Mail explains the faint-hope clause in Canadian law. The article written by Perkel (2018) describes how an Ontario Court tossed a retroactive change to the ‘faint-hope’ ruling in Canadian law. The review article determines that the conservative party in Canada opted to improve on the ‘faint-hope’ clause which has made it harder for people who have committed serious crimes to seek parole acquittal. The article further discusses how the government’s prime minister, Stephen Harper changed the law which required convicts first to convince the judge of the need for a jury to consider early parole. This has made it difficult for them to establish what is necessary for a convict to seek parole justice.
According to the class notes, ‘faint-hope’ clause provide a convict with the hope of gaining early parole if their conduct is proper. In most cases, convicts that are serving more than ten years for second-degree murder or twenty-five years for first degree are not eligible. The article discusses that this is not right since, sometimes, people change who they are when they are inside prison, and this can deter their hope of coming back into society.
According to an article published in Global News by Jackson (2019), a teen was charged in connection to a stabbing of an incident in Bradford. The accounts of the case indicate that the teen was a minor aged sixteen-years of age was stabbed to death by a seventeen-years-old teen. The incident according to the police showed that the teen was transported to the hospital and was pronounced dead. The results led to the arrest of the seventeen-year-old teen who was charged with aggravated assault, assault with a weapon and possession of a firearm. Based on the class notes, youth justice legislation is the law that governs any criminal offense about a minor. A minor is one who is aged between zero and eighteen years of age. The case, according to Jackson (2019) does not reveal the name of teen due to the protection rights under the Youth Justice Act. The class notes concur with the sentiments and indicate that minor’s court cases or arrests are usually very sensitive topics.
How the media portrays the youth in the country can be alarming. Based on an article published by the National Post (2017), the Crown is testing a new law about how the youth behave in the modern age. Based on the article, the Crown indicated that six teenagers would be considered for sentencing based on their crime of indecent exposure in social media. This sentencing is relatively new due to the introduction of social media, and this law has never been present in Canadian law. According to the class notes, youth crime is often depicted by the media in different mannerisms. Most of the stories are violent crimes which can be disastrous. However, the article is a different ray of the issues discussed by the media. It is about a harmless crime which in most cases would have never been determined as an issue. However, because, indecent exposure is recognized under the rule of law then it is considered a criminal offense. The relevance of the article is to show that sometimes the media does not always paint the youth in lousy light based on crimes of violent nature, but, sometimes has to highlight the light crimes which are still considered under the rule of law.
Bains (2019) describes an ongoing court case that involves a man who is charged with the murder of his wife but was granted bail which raises the questions of whether the man was wrongfully convicted. According to the class notes, wrongful convictions are determined as an incident when a person is deemed to have committed a crime, but they are innocent. In this case, according to Bains (2019) sometimes when the judge decides not to sentence an individual but, grant them bail, then they are liable to be considered an innocent person. The number of individuals who have been wrongfully convicted in Canada is yet to be documented due to the ongoing process of the innocence project as discussed by Bains (2019). According to the class notes, those who are wrongfully convicted is an unknown number which can be problematic since they do not deserve the pain. Nonetheless, this brings a crucial topic to the table regarding issues about wrongful convictions in the country. Most of the time, it is due to prosecutorial misconduct or the point of a person being convicted for claiming to be a perpetrator when they are not.
An article by Geiger (2016) focuses on criminal conviction rates in Canada. According to a case in the 20th century, Wheat Kings, the individual was wrongfully convicted and due to a second hearing, the individual, Wheat Kings, was released on account of wrongful conviction. This was in 1992, according to Geiger (2016) and due to his case, the number of wrongful convictions in Canada has decreased since then, but this arguably. The reason is because of the need to ensure that each evidence and every witness is credible for the case. For example, according to Geiger (2016), an eye witness error landed Wheat King into prison. As a result, the witness was able to recognize the individual and the judge resulted in sentencing the individual to life in prison. According to the class notes, witness error is considered as the number one cause of wrongful convictions in the country. This highlights the loophole of the Canadian system when it comes to articulation of the integrity of a witness.
Bains, Camille. (2019). Man convicted of killing wife gets bail during the probe of possible wrongful conviction. Global News. Retrieved from https://globalnews.ca/news/4881755/skiffington-bail/
Campbell, Quinn. (2018). Mother Admits to Leaving Child in Freezing Car Outside A Bar in Lethbridge. Global News. Retrieved from https://globalnews.ca/news/4129226/mother-admits-to-leaving-child-in-freezing-car-outside-a-bar-in-lethbridge/
Chua, Steven. (2014). Will Canada Ever Get to Prosecute Amanda Todd’s Alleged Predator? Global News. Retrieved from https://globalnews.ca/news/1280985/amanda-todd-extradition-a-legal-muddle/
Edmiston, J., Hrvatin, V., and Arnold, C. (2018). Accused Serial Killer Bruce Mcarthur Was A Friendly, Unremarkable Fixture In Toronto Neighbourhood. National Post. Retrieved from https://nationalpost.com/news/toronto/thats-the-scary-part-accused-serial-killer-bruce-mcarthur-was-a-friendly-unremarkable-fixture-in-toronto-neighbourhood
Donato, Al. (2018). Community Policing In Canada: Crime Prevention Through Relationship Building. CBC. Retrieved From https://www.cbc.ca/keepingcanadasafe/blog/community-cops-future-of-canadian-police
Ferreras, Jesse. (2018). How a Canadian City is Dealing with the Highest Crime Levels in Over a Decade. Global News. Retrieved from https://globalnews.ca/news/4366782/red-deer-crime-severity-index/
Fine, Sean (2018). Supreme Court of Canada considers holding hearings outside of Ottawa. The Globe and Mail. Retrieved from https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-supreme-court-of-canada-considers-holding-hearings-outside-of-ottawa/
Fraser, Keith. (2018). Vancouver Landlord Sexually Assaults a Female Tenant, Jailed 2 Years. Vancouver Sun. Retrieved from https://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/vancouver-landlord-sexually-assaulted-female-tenant-jailed-2-years-less-a-day
Geiger, Dorain. (2016). How Canada’s Record of Wrongful Imprisonment Has Changed Since ‘Wheat Kings. Vice. Retrieved from https://www.vice.com/en_ca/article/ppv8y9/how-canadas-record-of-wrongful-imprisonment-has-changed-since-wheat-kings
Jackson, Hannah. (2019). Teen charged in connection with the stabbing incident in Bradford: police. Global News. Retrieved from https://globalnews.ca/news/4907026/teen-charged-bradford-stabbing-police/
Kassam, Ashif. (2018). Toronto Police Officer Hailed a Hero for Arresting Suspect without Firing. The Guardian. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/24/toronto-cananda-van-suspect-arrest
Malone, Kelly. (2017). They have a lot to teach us’: Inmates call for Canadian justice reform in the journal. CBC News. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/prisoners-on-prisons-justice-reform-1.4430769
Monkman, Lenard. (2018). Indigenous incarceration rates: Why are Canada’s numbers so high and what can be done about it? CBC News. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/news/indigenous/indigenous-incarceration-justice-system-panel-1.4729192
Mulgrew, Ian. (2017). Ian Mulgrew: Supreme Court of Canada stands firm on timely trial rights. Vancouver Sun. Retrieved from https://vancouversun.com/news/national/ian-mulgrew-supreme-court-stands-firm-on-timely-trial-rights
National Post. (2017). Crown seeks conditional discharge for six Nova Scotia teens in naked photo ring. Retrieved from https://nationalpost.com/news/canada/six-nova-scotia-teenagers-to-be-sentenced-in-naked-photo-ring-case
Paperny, Mehler. (2017). Canada’s Jailhouse Secret: Legally Innocent Prisoners are Dying. Perkel, Colin. (2018). Ontario court tosses retroactive Harper-era change to ‘faint-hope’ rule for convicted murderers. The Globe and Mail. Retrieved from https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-ontario-court-tosses-retroactive-harper-era-change-to-faint-hope/
Reuters. Retrieved from https://www.reuters.com/article/us-canada-jails-deaths-insight-idUSKBN1AJ19V
Whittington, L. (2015). Canada’s prisoners aren’t being prepared properly for release, auditor general warns. The Star. Retrieved from https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2015/04/28/prisoners-not-being-prepared-for-release-says-canadas-auditor-general.html
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