In a recently published report from Statistics Canada on Youth Crime in Canada, using data from 2014, youth aged 12 to 17 were more than twice as likely to be charged with a crime in 2014 as people aged 25 and older. In 2014, there were 101,000 youth aged 12 to 17 charged with a criminal offence. While youths ages 12 to 17 make up 7% of the Canadian population, they accounted for 13% of individuals charged in 2014. This, however, is a decrease in the youth crime rate, which has been declining since its peak in 1991, and since 2000 has fallen 42%. Despite its continual decrease, youths are charged at a disproportionate rate. The criminal justice system is daunting to most people, and that is only exasperated by a youth's age.
The news of an assault on a Russian embassy staff member by a Canadian reservist over the weekend stemmed concerns of national security. With a media ban ordered at the bail hearing news of what occurred will have to wait until the accused is before the court. While the incident is strange, the criminal charges of assault, assault with a weapon, and assault causing bodily harm are all serious charges that bring with them some of the most serious penalties, often years in jail.
Being charged with a crime, such as domestic assault, is often one of the most difficult and stressful events in a person's life. Most people never, or rarely, interact with the criminal justice system; when they find themselves charged with a criminal offence they are often left confused about what to do. The most important thing for someone facing a criminal charge is to be able to continue with their normal lives as much as possible while dealing with the charge.