Humane Canada Gives Community Impact Statement on Behalf of Animals in Sentencing Hearing

Humane Canada’s Criminal Justice System Reform Program made the first ever community impact statement on behalf of animals in a criminal sentencing hearing. The Manitoba case R v CW & DW involved a husband and wife creating digital recordings depicting sexual assault of two children and seven dogs over a ten-year period. The two plead guilty to various child pornography and bestiality charges.The Canadian Centre for Child Protection Inc alerted Humane Canada to the case, noting that the Crown was amenable to including a community impact statement on behalf of the animal victims as part of the sentencing submissions. Humane Canada reports that the Crown sentencing submission relied on the community impact statement, as the Crown highlighted that “[a]nimals have no capacity whatsoever to report offending behaviour against them. They simply lack that capacity in any meaningful way.” The co-accused were sentenced to four-years incarceration, with one year concurrent for the bestiality charge, a five-year animal ownership prohibition, a ten-year social media ban, as well as other ancillary orders. See Humane Canada’s National Centre for the Prosecution of Animals Cruelty July newsletter here, and see the case summary here.