R. v. Knowlton, (1973) 5 Nfld. & P.E.I.R. 209 (NFCA)

JudgeFurlong, C.J. and Mifflin, J.
CourtNewfoundland Court of Appeal
Case DateJune 29, 1973
JurisdictionNewfoundland and Labrador
Citations(1973), 5 Nfld. & P.E.I.R. 209 (NFCA)

R. v. Knowlton (1973), 5 Nfld. & P.E.I.R. 209 (NFCA)

MLB headnote and full text

R. v. Knowlton

Indexed As: R. v. Knowlton

Newfoundland Supreme Court

On Appeal

Furlong, C.J. and Mifflin, J.

June 29, 1973.

Summary:

This appeal arose out of a charge of criminal negligence causing death contrary to s. 203 of the Criminal Code of Canada. The accused was tried before a Magistrate and was acquitted of the charge of criminal negligence, but was convicted of the included offence of dangerous driving contrary to s. 203(4) of the Criminal Code. The Crown appealed from the acquittal of the charge of criminal negligence and from sentence. The appeal court, composed of two judges of the Supreme Court pursuant to s. 2 of the Criminal Code, dismissed the appeal.

The appeal court held that the Magistrate did not misdirect himself in referring to "wanton and reckless" conduct as "merciless, inhuman or malicious", since the Magistrate otherwise correctly applied the "wanton and reckless" standard under s. 202(1) of the Criminal Code.

The appeal court affirmed the sentence imposed by the Magistrate and stated that it would be harsh to imprison a person in the physical condition of the accused.

Criminal Law - Topic 1351

Criminal negligence - Definition - Criminal Code of Canada, R.S.C. 1970, C. C-34, s. 202(1) - Motor vehicle trial judge defined "wanton and reckless" conduct as "merciless, inhuman or malicious" - Newfoundland Court of Appeal held that the definition was wrong but that it was not misdirection where the trial judge otherwise correctly applied the "wanton and reckless" standard - Paragraphs 1 to 6.

Criminal Law - Topic 5834

Sentencing - Principles - Extenuating circumstances conviction for dangerous driving - Magistrate took into account in deciding not to imprison the accused the facts that the accused was 60 years of age, had an excellent driving record, had influenza on the day of the accident, was a diabetic with angina and had a drink of alcohol before the accident - Newfoundland Court of Appeal affirmed sentence of $300.00 fine or sixty days imprisonment and a three year driving suspension - Paragraphs 7 and 8.

Criminal Law - Topic 5865

Sentence - Dangerous driving - Newfoundland Court of Appeal affirmed sentence of $300.00 fine or sixty days imprisonment and three year driving suspension - Paragraphs 7 and 8.

Words and Phrases

"Wanton or reckless" - Trial judge defined "wanton or reckless disregard" in Criminal Code of Canada, R.S.C. 1970, c. C-34, s. 202(1), as "merciless, inhuman or malicious" - Newfoundland Court of Appeal held definition incorrect - Paragraphs 1 to 6.

Cases Noticed:

R. v. Morrissette et al. (1971), 1 C.C.C.(2d) 307, refd to. [para. 8].

Statutes Noticed:

Criminal Code of Canada, R.S.C. 1970, c. C-34, sect. 202(1), sect. 203, sect. 233(4).

Counsel:

Gerard Martin, for the appellant;

John W. Mahoney, for the respondent.

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