Class 4 - Political Theory and Wrongful Convictions.docx

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WRONGFUL CONVICTIONS
i.e., Guy Paul Morin (imprisoned 18 months) ● murder of Christine Jessop 1984
• 2 Trials
• 1st 1986 aquitted
• 2nd 1992 convicted
• Bail 1993 (pending Defence Appeal)
• Exonerated 1995 (by DNA evidence)
• Led to Kaufman Inquiry 1996
i.e., David Milgaard (imprisoned 23 years)
i.e., Donald Marshall (imprisoned 11 years)
i.e., Thomas Sophonow (imprisoned 4 years)
i.e., Romeo Phillion (imprisoned 30 years)
i.e., Greg Parsons (imprisoned 6 weeks)
i.e., Ronald Dalton
i.e., Randy Druken (imprisoned 6 years)
i.e., Clayton Johnson (imprisoned 5 years)
i.e., Robert Baltovich (imprisoned 9 years)
i.e., Steven Truscott (imprisoned 10 years)
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OAKES TEST (or “Proportionality Test”)
(to determine if legislation should be struck down and declared invalid)
To establish that a limit/infringement of a Right or Freedom is justified under a piece of
legislation, two main criteria must be met: 1. The objective of the limiting measures must be
“sufficiently important” (must relate to concerns that are “pressing and substantial”).
2. The government must show that the means/way chosen to effect this limit are “reasonable and
demonstrably justified” (involves a form of “proportionality test”).
Three important parts of the proportionality test
a) measures used to limit must be carefully designed to achieve the objective in question (can’t
be arbitrary or unfair).
b) measures used should impair as little as possible the Right or Freedom.
c) must be a proportionality/balancing between the effects/consequences of the measure/limit and
the objective being sought (i.e., the more severe the limit/infringement, the more important the
objective must be).
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