I think defending yourself, your kin and your home is a pretty fundamental Canadian right. These charges should be dropped. I have no sympathy for the criminal hiding in the house.
TORONTO — A man escorting his girlfriend to her home Sunday night discovered signs of entry to her house and, fearing for the woman’s mother sleeping inside, searched for intruders. A man was found hiding, Toronto police said. An ensuing struggle left the intruder bleeding from stab wounds.
As frightening as the incident was, it is the charging of the boyfriend with aggravated assault, punishable by 14 years in prison, that makes the case stand out in a clutter of urban crime.
It is the latest flashpoint in the debate over self-defence and protection of property after a number of high-profile cases across Canada brought a clamour for clarity and change.
Defence lawyers yesterday said it’s the sort of case that a defendant — the 28-year-old man charged with the stabbing — would want to be decided by a jury, where citizens can imagine themselves in a similar circumstance and ponder what they might do.
“You can defend your property, you can defend persons in your charge and you can defend yourself. In this case he can make an argument to all three, but he has to use proportional force,” said Gordon Dykstra, a criminal defence attorney in Abbotsford, B.C.