2014 NSPC 79

In 2014 NSPC 79, Mr. L, a 17-year-old, pleaded guilty to criminal harassment after sending threatening Facebook messages to his ex-girlfriend, Ms. B, over a two-day period. He also pleaded guilty to assault, assault with a weapon, sexual assault and mischief. He had been physically and sexually violent with his former girlfriend. The Court considered whether 6-months’ imprisonment, 15-months’ probation, and a total ban on social media use would be a fit and proper sentence, and ultimately found that it was. The Court agrees with the Crown’s analogy at trial:

[I]f you commit an offence with a motor vehicle, you lose driving privileges; if you commit an offence with a weapon, you lose the privilege to use, possess or own same. And so it should be with ‘social media.’[1]

Mr. L was ultimately banned from social media until “he understands the need for respectful and responsible relationships among young people and society in general,”[2] and was ordered to delete his Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts within 24 hours. He was sentenced to six months’ deferred custody and supervision order, 15 months’ probation, with orders to delete his Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts within 24 hours, a ban on social media use, a ban from opening social media accounts under an alias, an order to provide the probation officer with current names and passwords of social media accounts, a DNA order, and a two years weapons prohibition.

[1] 2014 NSPC 79 at 69.
[2] 2014 NSPC 79 at 52.


Criminal Offence(s): Criminal Harassment