Extrajudicial Measures

Special Assignment

These ideas will help you explore the YCJA in depth. You can complete the activities for a classroom assignment.

1. Work with a partner and another team to prepare a debate on the following topic:

BE IT RESOLVED that criminal trials are a better way of preventing crime and protecting the public than extrajudicial measures or extrajudicial sanctions.

Present the debate to the rest of the class and have them decide who has argued the topic more effectively.

2. Read the following scenario and answer the questions which follow:

Mrs. Myers’ Garden

Twelve-year-old Jeannine sneaked into Mrs. Myers’ garden to pick some of her favourite berries. Mrs. Myers was tired of children stealing from her garden. She had chased many children away before but they always seemed to come back. Often they walked over her plants and were general nuisances. Mrs. Myers phoned the police and said, "I’ve just found another child in my garden. This time it’s one I recognize—Jeannine Lebourdier."

Consider what should happen to Jeannine by answering the following questions:

  1. Is this a case for court? Why or why not?
  2. What consideration should be given to Mrs. Myers?
  3. Is this a case for a police warning?
  4. Would other out-of-court options be appropriate?
  5. What do you think is the best way to deal with this case and why?

3. In a similar case, in 1880, a young girl served 14 days in a common jail in Charlottetown, P.E.I., before her trial. She was then sentenced to six months in an Ontario reformatory. Her crime was stealing one gooseberry. This case was included in an interesting book by D. Owen Carrigan, Juvenile Delinquency in Canada—a History, Irwin Publishing, 1998.

How does this sentence compare to what you decided to do in question #2 above? If your result is different why do you think the attitude to crimes of this kind has changed?

4. What have you learned about extrajudicial measures? Do you think the information will help you make choices in the future? Explain your answer and hand in a short paragraph on the subject.