Cedric Ookowt, et al. v. His Majesty the King, et al.
(Nunavut) (Criminal) (By Leave)
Constitutional law - Criminal law - Constitutional law — Charter of Rights — Criminal law — Sentencing — Mandatory minimum — Cruel and unusual treatment or punishment — Constitutionality of mandatory minimum sentence for intentionally discharging a firearm into or at a place, knowing that or being reckless as to whether another person is present in the place — Whether mandatory minimum sentence violates s. 12 of the Charter — Application of Gladue principles — Whether Court of Appeal applied appropriate standard of review — Whether there are conflicting decisions — Whether Court of Appeal erred in law — How should sentencing courts incorporate Indigenous concepts of justice — s. 12 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
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Both of the applicants are Inuk. They applicants pled guilty to s. 244.2(1)(a) of the Criminal Code for intentionally discharging a firearm into or at a place, knowing that or being reckless as to whether another person is present in the place. The offence has a maximum sentence of 14 years and a minimum sentence of four years. The applicants filed a notice of constitutional challenge arguing that the mandatory minimum sentence violates s. 12 of the Charter. Both sentencing judges found that the four year mandatory minimum sentence in s. 244.2(3)(b) of the Criminal Code violates s. 12 of the Charter, and struck down the provision. The sentencing judges determined that a fit sentence for both applicants was two years less one day. The Court of Appeal allowed the Crown appeals, set aside the constitutional invalidity rulings, and imposed a four year sentence for both applicants.
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