Threaten Death / Bodily Harm


The offence of threatening covers those facts where a person utters, conveys or otherwise causes a person to receive a threat to cause death or bodily harm to a person, to burn, destroy or damage the real or personal property of that person, or to kill, poison or injure an animal or bird that is the property of that person.

In order for a charge of Threats to be made out, the target of the threat need not be aware of the threat, or if aware of the threat, he need not to have taken it seriously. If a reasonable person, aware of the circumstances surrounding the utterance of the words would have perceived them to be a threat, then the act is made out. The intent of the accused person must be for the utterances to have intimidated or to be taken seriously. It is not necessary to show that the accused person intended to carry out the threat.





Depending on the nature of the threat, the maximum penalty for the charge of threats is either 6 or 18 months in custody, if the Crown proceeds by way of summary conviction, or 2-5 years custody if the Crown proceeds by way of indictment. There is no mandatory minimum penalty for threats.


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