FASD & the Justice System

R. v. J.J.G., 2014 BCSC 2497, 2015 BCSC 77 (Silverman J.)

Aboriginal accused with FASD charged with murder of infant nephew – 15 yo at time of offence, 20 at time of trial – low functioning and far below his chronological age intellectually, severely restricted ability to communicate, little understanding of context of time – was found unfit in 2009 based on IQ but educated about court processes while in youth psychiatric facility and guarded medical opinion that fit – admissibility of statements made at review board hearing and in assessment facility inadmissible even though assessment order technically expired (2014 BCSC 2497) - key Crown evidence from‘jailhouse’ informant at same youth detention facility – apart from credibility issues with informant, concern about ability to base conviction on comments made by a very low-functioning person (2015 BCSC 77) – accused acquitted.