SELECTED CASE LAW
NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR:
In 2012 NLCA 20, Mr. S appealed his conviction of common assault, assault causing bodily harm, and two counts of sexual assault against his girlfriend, arguing he had incompetent counsel and the judge had improperly refused to allow questions about his sexual relationship with his girlfriend. He also appealed his sentence.
The assaults had occurred at different points over several months. Mr. S was a truckdriver and he and his girlfriend suspected that they were cheating on each other. His girlfriend had a cell-phone plan for both of their phones and could access his call record through the account. She accused him of calling his ex-girlfriend and cheating on her. At one point she demanded he give her his phone back, when she tried to physically take it. They had a physical altercation where Mr. S struck her. On another occasion, she saw a text on his phone that made her suspicious. They would argue over the suspected infidelities and Mr. S physically and sexually assaulted her during some of these arguments. The court found that Mr. S was using sexual assaults to punish his girlfriend. She reported the assaults to the police, providing evidence of a broken necklace and damaged drywall in her apartment that were caused during the assaults. She also provided medical reports of fractures to her face and an injury to her lower jaw. At the hospital she reported that her boyfriend had caused one the injuries to one doctor, after initially claim-ing it was an accident where she had fallen. The complainant worked at the hospital and claimed to have been embarrassed about how she got her injuries. She was found credible at trial and Mr. S was convicted of all four counts.
Mr. S had a history of assault and sexual assault convictions. On appeal, his sentence was reduced to five years in jail. Additional orders included a DNA order, registration as a sex offend-er for 20 years, no-contact orders, and a lifetime firearm ban.
Also see: 2009 CanLII 1121 (NLPC) (Trial); 2009 CanLII 7936 (NLPC) (Sentencing).
Criminal Offence(s): Sexual Assault