FASD & the Justice System

R. v. RL, 2007 OJ No. 4095, 2007 OJ No. 5307/2007 CanLII 60466, 2007 OJ No. 5294, 2008 OJ No. 861 (SC) (Spies J.): 

Series of cases dealing with matter in which accused faced charges of sexually assaulting his younger sister, who had FAS.

4095: accused seeking police records of complainant

5307:  accused seeking third party records relating to FASD diagnosis and other

conduct so that defence FASD expert could review them – accepted that FASD relevant to complainant’s credibility and reliability, also could impact ability to engage consensually in inappropriate sexual behavior – degree of FASD important – application not based on discriminatory belief or bias, but is important to full answer and defence – records about FAS diagnosis relevant, also records about inappropriate sexual conduct at school.  Other counseling records not released.

5294:  Crown seeking to lead similar fact evidence – suggested lower threshold for admissibility because need full context to properly assess complaint’s credibility and reliability given her FASD – application denied.

861: Defence costs application subsequent to charge being withdrawn by Crown. Costs order quashed by 2009 ONCA 286.