Deceased’s record dated and had limited probative value

Supreme court | Evidence

CHARACTER EVIDENCE

Deceased’s record dated and had limited probative value

Accused charged with second degree murder. Accused took part in planned robbery of deceased, a drug dealer. Accused testified that after robbery was aborted deceased approached him threateningly and displayed gun in his waistband. Accused then shot deceased repeatedly. Defence sought to lead evidence that deceased had criminal record for firearms. Trial judge excluded evidence of deceased’s record. Majority of Court of Appeal dismissed accused’s appeal. Majority held that deceased’s record was dated and had limited probative value and evidence would have protracted trial and distracted jury. Accused’s further appeal to Supreme Court of Canada dismissed. Trial judge did not err in finding that minimal probative value of evidence was substantially outweighed by its prejudicial effect.
R. v. Jackson (Apr. 23, 2014, S.C.C., Abella J., Rothstein J., Moldaver J., Karakatsanis J., and Wagner J., File No. 35622) Decision at 109 W.C.B. (2d) 558 was affirmed.  112 W.C.B. (2d) 674.

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