Question from Chris, What does Section 88 of the Canadian Criminal Code entail and how does it apply to possession of a pellet gun?
Answer from AI:
Section 88 of the Canadian Criminal Code makes it an offense to possess a weapon for a purpose dangerous to the public peace. This law is broad and can apply to a variety of situations, including the one you described. However, the key element is the intent to use the weapon in a way that could disturb the public peace.
Understanding Section 88
Under Section 88, the prosecution must prove that you had the weapon and intended to use it for a dangerous purpose. The law does not require that the weapon was actually used, or that anyone was harmed. The intent can be inferred from the circumstances, but it is not automatically assumed from mere possession.
In your case, the pellet gun was in the glove box of your car. The prosecution might argue that this is evidence of intent to use it for a dangerous purpose. However, you could argue that the gun was there because you were moving it to storage, not because you intended to use it dangerously.
Considering the Prosecutor’s Offer
The prosecutor’s offer to go through the accountability program might be a way to resolve the case without a trial. This could involve admitting guilt and agreeing to certain conditions, such as community service or counseling. However, if you do not believe you are guilty, you may not want to accept this offer.
Before making a decision, you should consult with a legal professional. They can help you understand the potential consequences of accepting the offer, as well as the risks of going to trial. They can also help you prepare a defense if you decide to fight the charges.
Defending Against a Section 88 Charge
If you decide to fight the charges, you will need to present evidence that you did not intend to use the pellet gun for a dangerous purpose. This could include:
- Testimony about why the gun was in the car
- Evidence that you were moving and had to put the gun somewhere
- Any other evidence that shows you did not intend to use the gun dangerously
Again, a legal professional can help you gather and present this evidence.
Please note: This information is intended to provide a general understanding of the law. It is not legal advice. For advice about your specific situation, please consult with a legal professional.