Passive resistance alone is not a crime.
Monday, December 03, 2012 - Filed in: Court Cases
In Whatcott v. The Queen, the Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench set aside the conviction of a man charged with resisting a peace officer engaged in the lawful execution of his duty by refusing to accompany the officer after being placed under arrest, contrary to section 129(1) of the Criminal Code. When a police officer told the Accused that he under arrest, he remarked that he would not go and sat on the sidewalk and crossed his legs and his arms. The police officer and his colleague then picked the Accused up and carried him to the police car. The police carried the Accused eight to ten feet and then he got into the police car on his own. The Court began its decision by noting the Accused was charged with resisting a peace officer in the execution of his duty and not obstructing a peace officer in the execution of his duty. The Court went on to hold that “passive resistance does not constitute resisting arrest. The situation is not similar to . . . where the accused actively resisted arrest by locking his toes under the seat in front of him and hanging on to the armrest in an effort to prevent his removal. There was no evidence of any active resistance by [the Accused]. It was not a situation where his conduct required maximum effort from the peace officers in order to effect the arrest.”