Emanuel Lozada v. His Majesty the King

(Ontario) (Criminal) (As of Right)

(Publication ban in case)


Criminal law — Charge to jury — Co-principal liability — Law of causation — Whether the trial judge erred by misdirecting the jury with respect to the “causation” element of unlawful act manslaughter — Whether the doctrine of “intervening act” applies in the context of a group assault — Criminal Code, s. 21(1)(a)


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(Publication ban in case)

The appellant, Emanuel Lozada, along with other individuals, participated in two fights, the second of which resulted in the fatal stabbing of the victim. At the appellant’s trial for manslaughter, the Crown argued that the appellant was liable for manslaughter either as a co-principal with the man alleged to have stabbed the victim, or as an aider and abettor of the stabber. The jury found the appellant guilty. The appellant appealed the manslaughter conviction. He alleged, among other grounds of appeal, that the trial judge erred in his instructions to the jury on the law of causation with respect to co-principal liability. The majority of the Court of Appeal for Ontario dismissed the appeal. It concluded that read as a whole, the jury instructions accurately put the law of causation as it applied to the appellant. Paciocco J.A., dissenting, would have allowed the appeal, set aside the conviction and ordered a new trial. He found that the trial judge twice misdirected jurors by understating the standard of “reasonable foreseeability” they could use in determining whether the appellant’s unlawful act amounted to a “significant contributing cause” of the victim’s death.

Lower Court Rulings

March 3, 2017
Ontario Superior Court of Justice

Appellant found guilty of manslaughter.
March 31, 2023
Court of Appeal for Ontario

2023 ONCA 221
Appeal dismissed.