What is the test for acquittal in a sexual assault case where there is defence evidence?

British Columbia, Canada


The following excerpt is from R. v. Winker, 2008 BCPC 269 (CanLII):

Where there is defence evidence, the principles of R v. W.(D.), 1991 CanLII 93 (SCC), [1991] S.C.J. No. 26, (1991), 63 C.C.C. (3d) 397 (S.C.C.), must be followed. As noted in that case, the rule of reasonable doubt must be applied to the assessment of credibility. It follows, therefore, that if the accused's evidence is believed there must be an acquittal. If his evidence is not believed but it raises a reasonable doubt as to his guilt, he must be acquitted. If the defence evidence does not raise a reasonable doubt as to the guilt of the accused, the court must still consider whether the prosecution has proved the elements of each of the offences beyond a reasonable doubt.

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