Yesterday, this Blog had a post on R. v. PAPPAS and the defense of provocation. Now, there are more thoughts on this defense via another case out of Canada, R. v. Cairney:
University of Alberta – Faculty of Law
November 19, 2013
This commentary focuses on the Supreme Court of Canada’s latest decision on provocation, the Cairney judgment from Alberta. In it, I critique the majority’s approach to the “suddenness” element in provocation, suggesting that it was: (1) questionable in light of the statutory language, jurisprudence and historical rationale of the defence; (2) troublesome given the facts of the case; (3) likely to have undesirable ramifications in future for a host of actors who might otherwise claim provocation; and (4) wrongly driven, at least in part, by a mistaken desire to assess provocation as a justification based defence, rather than an excuse.