AuthorSteve Coughlan/Glen Luther
ProfessionProfessor, Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University/Associate Professor, College of Law, Saskatchewan
The publication of this book is opportune for the Canadian legal sys-
tem. Arrest and detention are important police powers that tell us much
about the relationship between citizens and police in a democratic soci-
ety. Exploring the balance between legitimate law enforcement and the
freedom of citizens to be left alone has led to some controversy about
when a detention or arrest is justi f‌ied. Interactions between the police
and citi zens are increasingly under scrutiny for a number of reasons:
there is uncertainty about the police force’s power to assert authority in
certain situations; there have been allegations of police using excessive
force; and there is the constant question of whether racial prof‌iling has
factored into the decision to detain — and sometimes all of these issues
surface at once.
Contributing to the legal uncert ainty, the Supreme Court of Can-
ada recognized a common law investigative detention power in R. v.
Mann (2004), 21 C.R. (6th) 1. Unfortunately, that decision made it even
less clear when a detention for Charte r purposes had occ urred. In R. v.
Grant (2009), 66 C.R. (6th) 1, the Supreme Court of Canada has just
recently ref‌ined the test for when a detention for Charter purpose s has
occurred and, for the f‌irst time, def‌ined when such a detention is arbi-
trary contrary to section 9 of the Charter. Thus, the time is ripe for a
comprehensive work on detention and arrest.
Steve Coughla n and Gle n Luther h ave met t hat need w ith th is book .
Alt hough the b ook do es no t ana lyze ever y sit uati on in w hich an ind ivi d-
ual might be detained or arrested, it does addres s the major powers of
arrest and detention, whether at common law or by statute. The authors

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