This episode is guest-hosted by Erica Lenti, deputy features editor at Chatelaine.
27-year old Breeanna Bascombe was trying to rock her infant daughter to sleep when police descended on her parents' Brampton, Ontario home to arrest her, and charge her as an accessory after the fact to first-degree murder. The charge was related to a crime allegedly committed by Breanna's ex-boyfriend that she had absolutely nothing to do with. Breeanna thinks her very public arrest was an attempt to coax him out of hiding.
Eventually, her charges were stayed, but Breeanna was left with what's called a 'non-conviction', which can remain on your record in perpetuity and negatively impact your ability to work, travel or even adopt a pet. And her story is far from unique; in Ontario, around half the people charged with crimes end up with non-conviction records.
So why are so many innocent people being caught up in the Canadian criminal justice system? How do we prevent it? And is there any way for them to get their lives back?
GUEST: Eternity Martis, award winning journalist and author, writing about Breeanna Bascombe in Chatelaine