2014 ONCJ 712

In 2014 ONCJ 712, Mr. G was charged with criminal harassment for visiting Ms. P’s workplace and sending her repeated text messages. Mr. G initially met his female friend, Ms. P, online on a friendship/dating website. Although she wanted a friendship, he wanted a romantic relation-ship. He often brought her gifts, and they spoke frequently.

One day, after not being able to reach her on the phone, Mr. AG sent Ms. P an excessive number of text messages. When she received the messages later that day, Ms. P telephoned Mr. AG and told him she did not want to be contacted again. He then said that Ms. P’s physically abusive ex-husband gave her what “she deserved” and threatened to “hunt her down” because he knew where she lived. The next day, Mr. AG visited Ms. P’s workplace and demanded that she pay him money that she owed him. He commenced with a small claims court proceeding.

The Court found that the threat to “hunt her down” was made in the “context of [Mr. AG] believing that he was owed money by [Ms. P]. He was signaling to her that he was going to come after her for the money he thought he was owed.”[1] Based on the telephone call and workplace visit, the Court found that “it is more probable than not that [Ms. P] was reasonably concerned about her personal safety. This meets the balance of probabilities of standard.” However, the Court held that, “The criminal standard of beyond a reasonable doubt is a much higher standard and I am not satisfied on that standard that [Ms. P] feared for her safety.”[2] Mr. AG was ultimately acquitted of criminal harassment. However, the Court imposed a twelve-month re-cognizance requiring AG to keep the peace, be of good behaviour, and avoid any future contact with Ms. P.

[1] 2014 ONCJ 712 at para 25.
[2] 2014 ONCJ 712 at para 30.


Criminal Offence(s): Criminal Harassment