A few years ago, a Nanaimo, B.C. man decided to masturbate in his living room with the curtains open. Some neighbours observed his act and called police. He was arrested and charged with performing an indecent act in public. He was convicted and spent four months in jail. But while all that was going on, his lawyers successfully got the case in front of the Supreme Court of Canada and yesterday, the Court overturned his conviction. In Canada, your living room is not a public place — even if you're doing something rude to yourself….
The Globe and Mail's Kirk Makin has more in today's paper:
The accused, Daryl Milland Clark, was reported to police after a neighbouring couple furtively observed him through binoculars for 10 to 15 minutes, then called police.
“This is an important case from the perspective of defining a public place,” Mr. Clark's lawyer, Gil McKinnon, said in an interview.
“People can be comforted to know that a law-abiding citizen who does some kind of act in privacy — without knowledge he is being observed by someone outside — is not at risk of being prosecuted,” Mr. McKinnon said. . . . [Read the rest of the story]