Supreme Court Agrees to Weigh in on ‘Extreme Intoxication’ Defense

December 23, 2020 Updated: December 23, 2020

TORONTO—The Supreme Court has agreed to weigh in on a ruling related to the defence of extreme intoxication.

The court today granted prosecutors in Ontario leave to appeal.

The province’s Court of Appeal had set aside two separate convictions after finding part of the law unconstitutional.

The relevant provision bars an accused from using self−induced extreme intoxication as a defence.

Some women’s groups worry a person accused of violent crime can now argue they did not know what they were doing.

The men in the two cases, Thomas Chan and David Sullivan, were both high on drugs when they either killed or injured close relatives.

Both were convicted but the Appeal Court said it is wrong to punish someone for something they did involuntarily.