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The Defense of Self Defense


Law says Self-defense is a defense to a criminal charge in certain circumstances when a person responds to force, or threats of force, in order to stop the attacker from assaulting him. Once the criminal defense lawyer raises the defense of self defense the crown prosecutor must prove that a person not acted in self defense beyond a reasonable doubt.

The defense of self defense can also be invoked when there is a reasonable mistake of fact. This could include a reasonable belief that the victim was armed or made treats to harm and a person perceived danger accordingly. Self-defense is available where the accused was mistaken with respect to the "apprehension of the degree of danger and the nature and degree of the force necessary to defend himself". This mistaken belief, however, must be reasonable and necessary according to the circumstances.

Law says a person is not guilty of an offence if

(a) they believe on reasonable grounds that force is being used against them or another person or that a threat of force is being made against them or another person;

(b) the act that constitutes the offence is committed for the purpose of defending or protecting themselves or the other person from that use or threat of force; and

(c) the act committed is reasonable in the circumstances.

In determining whether the act committed is reasonable in the circumstances, the court shall consider the relevant circumstances of the person, the other parties and the act, including, but not limited to, the following factors:

(a) the nature of the force or threat;

(b) the extent to which the use of force was imminent and whether there were other means available to respond to the potential use of force;

(c) the person’s role in the incident;

(d) whether any party to the incident used or threatened to use a weapon;

(e) the size, age, gender and physical capabilities of the parties to the incident;

(f) the nature, duration and history of any relationship between the parties to the incident, including any prior use or threat of force and the nature of that force or threat;

(f.1) any history of interaction or communication between the parties to the incident;

(g) the nature and proportionality of the person’s response to the use or threat of force; and

(h) whether the act committed was in response to a use or threat of force that the person knew was lawful.

We have represented clients who experienced accusation of assault even though they were defending themselves from the complainant and used force in self defense. As an assault lawyer in Brampton, Navdeep Dhindsa has successfully proved to the court that the accused acted in self defense. It is our duty like other criminal lawyers in Brampton to advise our clients regarding criminal law.

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