R. v. Steger and Steger, (1982) 41 A.R. 219 (NWTSC)

Judgede Weerdt, J.
CourtSupreme Court of Northwest Territories (Canada)
Case DateOctober 28, 1982
JurisdictionNorthwest Territories
Citations(1982), 41 A.R. 219 (NWTSC)

R. v. Steger (1982), 41 A.R. 219 (NWTSC)

MLB headnote and full text

R. v. Steger and Steger

(SC 2674)

Indexed As: R. v. Steger and Steger

Northwest Territories Supreme Court

de Weerdt, J.

November 16, 1982.

Summary:

The accused American man and wife were charged with theft of dog food over $200.00 during a 2,000 mile dog team trek. They were arrested and removed from their expedition within an hour by aircraft and were under extreme pressure to settle the matter to avoid great financial expense and destruction of their expedition, including the dogs. As a result, they pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of theft under $200.00. They then appealed and applied to change their plea to "not guilty".

The Northwest Territories Supreme Court allowed the application and permitted the change of plea.

Criminal Law - Topic 4227

Procedure - Pleas - Change of plea from guilty to not guilty - Two people were arrested during a 2,000 mile Arctic dog sled trek and charged with theft of dog food over $200.00 in value - They were flown away from their expedition with less than an hour's notice - They pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of theft under $200.00 as a result of extreme pressure to avoid great financial expense and destruction of their expedition, including the dogs - The Northwest Territories Supreme Court on appeal permitted the two to change their pleas from guilty to not guilty.

Criminal Law - Topic 7416

Summary conviction proceedings - Appeal by way of trial de novo - When available - Criminal Code of Canada, R.S.C. 1970, c. C-34, s. 755(4) - Two people in the middle of a 2,000 mile Arctic dog sled trek pleaded guilty to a charge of theft of dog food - There was no record of the proceedings, which occurred before a justice of the peace at Resolute Bay - On appeal the Northwest Territories Supreme Court permitted the accused to change their plea to not guilty and proceeded by way of trial de novo, because there was no record of the proceedings below - See paragraphs 1 to 4.

Cases Noticed:

Adgey v. R. (1973), 23 C.R.N.S. 298; 13 C.C.C.(2d) 177; 39 D.L.R.(3d) 553, dist. [para. 22].

Brosseau v. R., [1969] S.C.R. 181; 5 C.R.N.S. 331; 65 W.W.R.(N.S.) 751; [1969] 3 C.C.C. 129; 2 D.L.R.(3d) 139, dist. [para. 22].

R. v. Bamsey, [1960] S.C.R. 294; 32 C.R. 218; 30 W.W.R.(N.S.) 552; 125 C.C.C. 329, dist. [para. 23].

R. v. Sanders (1953), 16 C.R. 378; 8 W.W.R.(N.S.) 676; 106 C.C.C. 76, dist. [para. 23].

Tennen v. R., [1960] S.C.R. 302; 32 C.R. 301; 125 C.C.C. 336, consd. [para. 24].

R. v. Hansen (1977), 37 C.C.C.(2d) 371 (Man. C.A.), consd. [para. 25].

R. v. Stork and Toews (1975), 31 C.R.N.S. 395 (B.C.C.A.), consd. [para. 25].

R. v. Corcoran (1967), 2 C.R.N.S. 160 (N.S.C.C.), consd. [para. 26].

R. v. Milina, [1946] 2 W.W.R. 584; 2 C.R. 179; 86 C.C.C. 374 (B.C.C.A.), consd. [para. 26].

Statutes Noticed:

Criminal Code of Canada, R.S.C. 1970, c. C-34, sect. 755(4) [para. 3].

Counsel:

J.E. Richard, for the appellants;

David Gates, for the respondent.

This case was heard on October 28, 1982, at Yellowknife, N.W.T., before de WEERDT, J., of the Northwest Territories Supreme Court, who delivered the following judgment on November 16, 1982:

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