Sexual Offences

Sexual Assault, Uttering Threats and Assault of a Domestic Partner.

Client was charged with sexual assault, uttering threats and assault of a domestic partner. The matter proceeded to trial. There was significant delay in the matter that was attributed by the Crown Counsel failing to provide disclosure material to counsel in a timely matter; additionally, there was a lack of court time and the trial did not complete during the time scheduled. Cathryn prepared an Application to seek to have all charges judicially stayed against client because the client’s right to be tried in a reasonable time was violated.

Client Charged with Child Luring

Client was charged with child luring. The investigation was not conducted by the police and instead by “Creep Catchers”. The client was caught on a video recorded by Creep Catchers. Cathryn made targeted disclosure requests to the Crown Counsel regarding the Creep Catcher’s “investigation” and the alleged evidence of luring against her client.

Client Charged with Sexual Assault During a “Tinder Date”

Client met complainant on the dating app “Tinder”. Client charged with sexually assaulting the complainant during one of their dates. Client had sent damaging apologetic text messages to the complainant the evening and morning after the alleged assault; those text messages were admitted at trial. There was also a documented injury and blood evidence tendered by the prosecution. At trial, Ms. Forhan cross examined the complainant extensively and successfully revealed to the Court that she was not a credible witness. During cross examination the complainant’s version of events was challenged and her evidence changed on material points.

Sexual Assault of Girlfriend (Too Intoxicated to Consent)

Client was accused of having sex with his girlfriend when she was too intoxicated to consent. Client disputed the allegation and said she was engaged and consenting during the sexual act, and that he ceased sexual activity when it became apparent that she was tired. Ms. Forhan elected a Supreme Court trial with a Preliminary Inquiry and conducted a 1-day prelim where she cross examined the complainant extensively. During her cross examination, the complainant admitted that she may have had a “memory black out” rather than being unconscious during the sexual activity.

Sexual Assault After Work Party

Client was out on a date with a co-worker following a work party. The two went back to a hotel room where the complainant performed oral sex on the client. Complainant alleged that the client pressured her into engaging in sexual acts beyond what she was comfortable with, to the point she did not in fact consent. At trial, the complainant was cross examined extensively. Ms. Forhan revealed inconsistencies in her evidence, particularly as to why she returned voluntarily to the bed to continue performing the consensual acts after receiving a phone call during the alleged assault. Case law confirming that victims of sexual assault are not expected to act in any certain way was presented by the prosecution, however Ms. Forhan successfully argued that her actions raised a reasonable doubt.

Sexual Assault of Girlfriend (Youth)

Client, who was a youth at the time, was accused of sexually assaulting his then girlfriend on three separate occasions. The client maintained that all sexual contact was consensual and was confused by the allegations. Ms. Forhan not only reviewed the police disclosure, but also obtained hundreds of electronic communications between the client and complainant privately. These communications provided the basis for an “honest but mistaken belief in consent” defence. In December 2019 legislative changes to the Criminal Code made those text messages presumptively inadmissible evidence. Ms. Forhan drafted a legal argument and successfully convinced the prosecutor that she could get them admitted into evidence by making a s. 278 and s. 276 application at trial. Prosecutor agreed to drop the charges and allow the client to enter into a Peace Bond.

Sexual Assault Caught on Video Results in No Criminal Record or Deportation

The accused was caught on videotape groping the victim in a bar while she was lying unconscious on a couch in a back room. The groping was prolonged and included touching her under clothing. The accused was significantly older than the victim and also highly intoxicated at the time of the offence. The accused was a Permanent Resident of Canada and therefore faced deportation if convicted. He was arrested by police and brought into custody. Meghan Forhan was retained and had the client released on bail the same day. Crown Counsel argued for a jail sentence which would have resulted in a deportation order and removal from Canada. Crown Counsel also argued to have the accused put on the Sex Offender Registry. Meghan Forhan argued for the accused to receive a Conditional Discharge

Sexsomnia Diagnosis Means No Criminal Record For Client Accused of Sexual Assault

The client was accused of sexually assaulting a victim while he was asleep in bed next to her at a party. The client had no recollection of the acts he was alleged to have committed. The accused had been drinking heavily that evening, but he also suffered from a sleep disorder known as Sexsomnia. Sexsomnia is similar to sleep walking, but rather than walking, persons who suffer from this type of parasomnia engage in sexual acts while asleep, unbeknownst to them.

Solicitation of A Minor [Sting Operation] Results in No Jail Time or SOIRA

Operation Steadfast was a large-scale, covert, undercover police operation set up to catch persons who engaged in solicitation of sexual services from females under the age of 18. The operation focused on catching the “Johns” using online platforms to purchase sexual services from underage girls. The client made an online arrangement to purchase sexual services from someone he initially believed to be 19 years of age; this person was an undercover police officer posing as a prostitute online. During recorded text message conversations, the undercover officer advised our client she was not 19, but actually 16 years of age. The client still agreed to meet her. When he arrived at the hotel a takedown occurred and he was arrested. His cell phone was seized and searched. The client also gave a full confession after being afforded his right to speak with legal counsel [who was not Ms. Forhan at that time].