Derstine Penman has had a well-recognized and successful criminal law practice for many years. We are and have been counsel on numerous trials in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice as well as the Supreme Court of Canada. Below is a small list of our trial cases.
Our client was accused of taking part in a gunpoint robbery at a hotel. We succeeded in having our client’s committal for trial quashed after bringing a certiorari application in which we highlighted the frailties in identification evidence.
R. v. O. 2016
Our client was charged with first degree murder as a result of a confession obtained through a Mr. Big operation. After a lengthy trial, our client was acquitted of all charges.
R. v. G. 2016
Our client was charged with murder in a cold case where advances in forensic technology allowed police to locate G.’s fingerprints and DNA at the scene of the homicide. At trial, we convinced the judge to take the exceptional step of staying the proceedings (the functional equivalent of an acquittal) due to evidence lost or destroyed by the police.
Our client was charged with first degree murder after his 17 year old daughter’s body was found in a suitcase which had been set on fire. We argued that her client’s Charter rights were violated during police interviews. The judge agreed and ruled that the contents of these interviews should be excluded from trial.
Our client was charged and convicted of trafficking in firearms, for which there was a mandatory minimum sentence of five years. We successfully argued that the mandatory minimum breached s. 12 of the Charter and the section was struck down.
Our client was charged with possession of child pornography. It was argued that police violated our client’s Charter rights, including his right to a reasonable expectation of privacy when they improperly seized his computer. Her advocacy resulted in the exclusion of key evidence.
Our client was charged with 17 offences including human trafficking and living off the avails of prostitution. We successfully showed that police fabricated evidence against our client and testified falsely about it. As a result, all 17 charges were stayed by the Court. This was upheld by the Court of Appeal.
The accused was accused of numerous charges including assaulting his girlfriend and sexually assaulting his friend. At trial, we successfully convinced the judge that client was not guilty of sexual assault causing bodily harm, unlawful confinement, or uttering death threats.
Our client was alleged to have robbed a transit kiosk of over $27,000 worth of cash and transit property. He was charged with theft, use of an imitation firearm while committing theft, and having his face masked while committing an offence. Our defence led to her client’s acquittal of all charges.
This is a case where we safeguarded our client’s right to a fair trial while defending him against allegations of sexual assault. The Crown refused to call the complainant’s mother despite making representations to the defence and Jury that she would do so. Counsel convinced the Judge that this would be unfair to the defence. As a result, the Judge called the complainant’s mother as a witness, allowing counsel to cross-examine her.
The client was charged with first-degree murder. We successfully argued that the victim’s pre-death statements about arguments with her client were not reliable enough to be admitted at trial.