Client was charged with assault and “fare by fraud” in relation to an incident with a taxi driver. Cab driver testified that soon after he picked client up the client started talking about minorities, and was swearing and making racial slurs. He stated that while he was driving up Confederation Drive the client all of a sudden grabbed the cab driver’s jacket and started hitting him. The cab driver stopped the vehicle. He said that the client got out and came to the dirver’s side door and “put him down”. He said the client grabbed his cell phone and threw it in the snow. He said that the client went after him and tried to punch him 2-3 times. Ultimately the cab driver said he saw an RCMP car and he flagged it down. By this time the client had walked up the hill. The cab driver further stated that the client did not pay his fare.
The client testified that he and a friend were picked up by the cab driver from a club. The friend was dropped off first and paid the cab driver enough to get the client to his home. The client said that he was not talking to the cab driver. The driver asked him 3-4 times where he lives. The client got frustrated and said “don’t you have a GPS?”. The cab driver pulled over and took his phone out and started to take a picture of the client. The client got mad, said why are you taking a picture of me. He grabbed the phone, got out of the back, and threw the phone in the snow. He proceeded to walk up the hill. He said at no time did he assault the cab driver. The trial judge commented that the only thing similar in the two version of events was the fact that the client took the phone and threw it in the snow, however, he was not charged with mischief.
Held: Court concluded that the Crown had not proven the allegations beyond a reasonable doubt and the client was acquitted of both charges.