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Monthly Archives: February 2016

Assault Chrage? Learn the facts.

In the news …

Last week a Hamilton man was charged with assault with a weapon following an incident at a downtown restaurant where man threw bacon and eggs at someone he was dining with. The bacon and eggs hit the victim in the face and caused undisclosed injuries. This incident, through out of the ordinary, is a good example of how broad the law can be regarding physical confrontations.

What is assault?

Section 265(1) of the Criminal Code defines assault as the intentional and non-consensual application of direct or indirect force from one person to another. The definition also includes threats to apply force, both with and without a weapon. Consent is further clarified in section 265(3) of the Code, where it is specified that non-resistance or submission to force does not imply consent. In other words, even if an individual does not fight back, they are not assumed to have consented to the assault.

Assault is a hybrid offence, meaning that the Crown will elect whether the charge will be an indictable (more serious) or summary (less serious) offence. However, there are many different types of assault, including aggravated-assault, sexual-assault, and assaulting a peace officer. Each of these categories of assault has its own set of punishment characteristics.

What is battery?

Battery is similar in almost every way except that it refers to actions in a civil law context (also called “tort”) rather than in a criminal law context. When someone is accused of battery, they are being accused by another individual, but when someone is accused of assault, they are being accused by the state.

AssaultIf you are facing a charges …

Anycharge, no matter what kind, is a serious matter that should be dealt with carefully and knowledgeably. The lawyers at Smordin Law have extensive experience defending clients facing charges against the person, and work diligently to ensure that clients’ needs are met, and that their rights are respected. If you are facing charges, contact Smordin Law.





Gun mixup leaves Stoney Creek man behind bars

Senior Criminal Defence counsel, Sandee Smordin, wins bail for client after client is illegally held in jail for 5 days by Hamilton Police.  Crown drops serious charges upon release after missing gun found, in police possession.

It wasn’t the smoking gun — it was the supposed missing gun that wasn’t missing after all.

Source: Gun mixup leaves Stoney Creek man behind bars By Ken Peters, Hamilton Spectator

Gun Charges Dropped

Cyber Bullying | What you need to know.

Cyber bullying and Criminal Law

What is cyber bullying?

Cyberbullying, at its most basic elements, is a type of bullying. In other words, cyberbullying involves a person or group of people taking advantage of an imbalance of power to hurt or disadvantage a specific person or group. The main characteristic of cyber bullying is that it happens online, particularly through social media. This makes cyber bullying especially serious, as information put on the internet is notoriously difficult to remove, and can be easily distributed beyond the control or intentions of the content’s creator.

Are there criminal consequences to cyber bullying?

As of 2015, there are now criminal consequences that can result from an accusation of cyberbullying. The new legislation is called the Protecting Canadians from Online Crime Act, and focuses on making amendments to the Criminal Code to include acts related to the online publication or distribution of potentially damaging personal information. This includes, for example, distributing intimate photographs without the subject’s consent.

Critics of the new legislation have voiced their concerns about other provisions in the Act, namely the ones governing the police’s power of investigation. The Act created a variety of new warrants that allow acts such as installing surveillance software on cell phones – powers that critics of the Act say are too broad and invasive, and put the public’s privacy rights at risk.

Aside from provisions in the Protecting Canadians from Online Crime Act, other criminal offences can apply to an individual accused of cyberbullying. These offences include harassment and uttering threats.

Contact Smordin Lawcyber bullying

The lawyers at Smordin Law understand that an accusation of cyberbullying, or possible criminal conviction stemming from cyberbullying, can seriously and permanently impact the life of the accused. If you have been charged with a criminal offence in relation to bullying or cyberbullying, contact Smordin Law. Smordin Law offers the unique advantage of focusing solely on criminal defence matters, and thus can provide the most comprehensive, effective, and efficient service needed to best fight your charges.





Police Searches | What you need to know.

What You Need to Know About a Police Searches

The police have the power to enter private residences if they have a warrant to do so. A warrant is a document that allows the police to enter a home, with or without permission of the residents, to search the premises or arrest an individual. However, there are situations wherpolice searchese police can lawfully enter a home without a warrant, such as when they are allowed in by someone who has authority over the home. In addition, the police can enter a home without a warrant in an emergency situation, for example, when they are responding to a 911 call. If there is a warrant, residents of the home can ask to see it to double check that the information on it (address, authorized times for police searches) is accurate.

The police can also conduct warrantless police searches on individuals if they have reason to believe the individual is in possession of illegal weapons, or if they locate the individual in an area where they are searching for illegal drugs and have reason to believe the individual is in possession of illegal drugs. When the police arrest someone in connection to other crimes, they have limited powers to search the individual, but may perform a pat-down search.

Searches also apply to electronics like computers and cell phones. A recent Supreme Court ruling identified that police can search an arrested person’s cell phone without a warrant, if they follow specific rules. These rules include: that the arrest must be lawful, that it is reasonable to conduct the search, that the nature and extent of the search are proportional to the purpose of the search, and that the police take detailed notes on their methods and findings. If the cell phone has a passcode on it, the owner is not required to provide the code to the police, but the police may use their own technology to unlock the phone.

It is important to know your rights if the police search you, your home, or your property. Retaining a lawyer is essential to the protection of your rights throughout the search process, and resulting legal actions. If you are facing criminal charges in relation to the outcome of a police search, contact the lawyers at Smordin Law to discuss your options.






What rules must police follow to search a cellphone during arrest?

Smordin Law Criminal Lawyers
41 King William St. #200
Hamilton, ON
L8R 1A2
Tel: 1 (905) 525-0005
Toll Free: 1 (844) 525-0005
Fax: 1 (905) 525-5716

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