SELECTED CASE LAW
In 2012 BCCA 469, Mr. S appealed his conviction of breach of probation and criminal harassment. He was found guilty of both offences, but the breach of probation was given a condition-al stay. Mr. S contacted and harassed his ex-wife, Ms. S, while on probation with an order not to contact Ms. S. He sent two text messages and made five calls to her phone. Mr. S had a his-tory of harassing and threatening Ms. S. The texts included details about Ms. S’ appearance. The text messages claimed to be from a different person and the phone was registered under someone else’s name. Ms. S suspected it was Mr. S and called the police, who called the number and asked if it was Mr. S when someone picked up. He said it was and was invited to the police station, which he attended. Mr. S was then charged with harassment. At trial, he argued that there was no evidence that he sent the texts or made the calls. He was convicted of criminal harassment.
Mr. S appealed the decision, arguing it was an unreasonable verdict due to the fact that the trial judge made an inference that the calls were from him and that the victim’s fear was reasonable. The appeal court held that the trial judge had not erred on determining on circumstantial evidence that the phone calls were from Mr. S, due to their communication with him on the same number, and that the wife’s fear was reasonable based on previous incidents with Ms. S. The appeal was dismissed.
Criminal Offence(s): Criminal Harassment