Trial on various drug charges. Search warrant executed at accused’s residence. Alleged s. 8 breach. Issue regarding the lawfulness of the manner of search, namely: forced entry without announcement.
Held: No breach of s. 8.
A forceful entry that is not prefaced by a “knock and announce” is prima facie unreasonable, with the onus shifting to the Crown to prove why the police did not follow the general rule. As per Cornell, 2010 SCC 31, a “flexible” approach is to be employed in assessing the “urgency of the situation”. Police took reasonable steps in assessing danger, and the risk of destruction of evidence, in determining that a forced entry was required. “Police had a reasonable belief that a knock and announce entry presented a significant risk that the drugs would be destroyed.”
P. Fagan – Defence Counsel