Pieces of circumstantial evidence excluded any reasonable alternative to accused’s guilt

Supreme court | Criminal Law | Offences against rights of property | Robbery

Accused was convicted of robbery of financial institution. Eyewitnesses and surveillance video indicated that robber was young man who wore sunglasses, gloves, bandana, and hat. Identity of robber and evidence against accused was circumstantial. Trial judge found DNA on pocket knife left in area of bank accessed only by bank employees and robber, and his DNA on t-shirt found in getaway car was fatal to defence. Accused was unsuccessful on his appeal as pieces of circumstantial evidence excluded any reasonable alternative to accused’s guilt. Accused appealed. Appeal dismissed. Based on principles in Villaroman, it was not unreasonable for trial judge to conclude that evidence as whole excluded all reasonable alternatives to guilt, especially given presence of accused’s DNA on two different pieces of evidence and both connected to robbery. Trial judge had not ignored other potential explanations.

R. v. Youssef (2018), 2018 CarswellOnt 18964, 2018 CarswellOnt 18965, 2018 SCC 49, 2018 CSC 49, Moldaver J., Côté J., Brown J., Rowe J., and Martin J. (S.C.C.); affirmed (2018), 2018 CarswellOnt 227, 2018 ONCA 16, John Laskin J.A., K. Feldman J.A., and R.A. Blair J.A. (Ont. C.A.).

Free newsletter

Our daily newsletter is FREE and keeps you up to date on all the developments in the Ontario legal community. Please complete the form below and click on subscribe for daily newsletters from Law Times.

Recent articles & video

Working from home not so popular with Law Times readers

Recent cases highlight issues with arbitration in Ontario

AG appoints Marie Hubbard as interim associate chairwoman of LPAT

Juristes Power Law welcomes new lawyer

International group of firms help secure new home for Peppa Pig

Appeal shows power of physical exhibits in IP, says lawyer

Most Read Articles

Law Society of Ontario names new equity and Indigenous affairs committee members

Law professor Ryan Alford granted standing in national security law challenge

Amid enactment of sweeping law enforcement Bill C-75, LSO seeks status quo for students, paralegals

LSO must stand up for racialized licensees, says prospective returning bencher