SELECTED CASE LAW
In 2007 ABCA 38, Mr. L, a 39-year-old man, pleaded guilty to nine counts of criminal harassment, one count of possession of stolen property, one count of careless storage of a firearm, and one count of breach of recognizance. Mr. L had harassed 32 women who, save one, were strangers to him over an 11-year period totalling 283 documented incidents. He would see these women in his neighborhood or near their work and begin campaigns of harassment against them. His behaviour included placing pornographic material and graffiti that referenced the complaint’s name and appearance on the complainant’s vehicles or mail boxes, stealing personal items from their car, calling women with obscene messages, calling women to tell them very personal information he had gathered about them, and calling women and remaining silent, breathing deeply, or hanging up. He suggested that he had been watching them while they were at home. Several women were harassed over several years. Mr. L dis-played a pattern of behaviour that was not deterred even by warnings by the police. He contacted five of his victims when he had been ordered not to while on bail. A search warrant executed in his home found a list of over 150 women’s names and phone numbers, including the complainants’. His long-term harassment had significant psychological and emotional impacts on his victims, causing real fear of being alone in their homes, being alone in the street, or answering their phone. Several victims kept weapons in the home for self-defence, due to the nature of the harassment.
Although Mr. L was a first offender, because his conduct occurred over 11 years, this was not considered a mitigating factor. He was sentenced to 54 months of imprisonment, a ten-year firearms prohibition, forfeiture of the weapons and other items seized in the search warrant.
Mr. L appeal his sentence for being demonstrably unfit. The court of appeal substituted his sentence with two years less a day incarceration, 3 years of probation, and additional orders including limitations on using public telephones or telephones not registered to Mr. L, a weapons probation, and an order to keep his distance from his victims.
Also see:  AJ No 431 (ABQB).
Criminal Offence(s): Criminal Harassment