Conditional Threat Can Result in Uttering Threats Charge in BC
If you say you will harm a person “if they do or don’t do something” you can be charged and found guilty of uttering threats, an offence set out in section 264.1 of the Criminal Code of Canada.
This type of threat is a conditional threat.
The Ontario Court of Appeal in R. v. Ross
(1986) 26 C.C.C. (3d) 413 held that conditional threats are threats under the uttering threats offence.
In the case R. v. Ross
, the accused said to a police officer “if he [another officer] does not leave he will be shot.”
The Ontario Court of Appeal in arriving to finding that such a conditional threat is a threat, referred to both the Shorter Oxford English dictionary (Oxford) and Black’s Law Dictionary, 5th ed., 1979 (Black’s).Oxford def
.: a denunciation to a person of ill to befall him; esp. a declaration of hostile determination or of loss, pain, punishment, or damage to be inflicted in retribution of or conditionally upon some course; a menace.Black’s def.
: The term, "threat" means an avowed present determination or intent to injure presently or in the future. A statement may constitute a threat even though it is subject to a possible contingency in the maker's control.
In the end the Ontario Court of Appeal held that “a conditional intention is capable of being an intention” and therefore held that a conditional threat is in fact a threat contemplated under the offence uttering threats in s. 264.1 f the Criminal Code of Canada.
Category: Uttering Threats
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