Entry into Place to Execute an Arrest Warrant

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General Principles

See also: Search_Incident_to_Arrest#Residences

When a suspect is the subject of an arrest warrant and he is believed to be found in a dwelling-house, the peace officer must seek a judicial authorization to enter the dwelling using a "Feeney" Warrant.[1]

A person has an increased privacy right in their home which prohibits warrantless entries even for the purpose of a lawful arrest[2] or seizure of evidence.[3]

Any power to enter a dwelling-house to carry out an arrest under a Criminal Code offence will equally apply to warrants under other federal Acts.[4]

A warrantless entry into a home is presumed unlawful.[5]

  1. R v Feeney, 1997 CanLII 342 (SCC), [1997] 2 SCR 13 at para 45 (“generally a warrant is required to make an arrest in a dwelling house.")
  2. R v Feeney, ibid. at para 19-20
  3. R v Golub, 1997 CanLII 6316 (ONCA) at para 41
  4. see s. 34.1 of the Interpretation Act
  5. R v Silveira, 1995 CanLII 89 (SCC), [1995] 2 S.C.R. 297, at para. 162

Implied Invitation to Knock

A peace officer is granted an implied licence by all residents to approach a residence, enter upon the property for the purpose of "knocking" at a door for the purpose of facilitating communication with occupant.[1] Occupants are deemed to have waived their privacy rights for the purpose on "facilitating communication" only and where the purpose goes beyond that it will be impermissible.[2]

Where a peace officer speaks to an occupant at the door who could be subject to arrest, the occupant is entitled to refuse to leave his residence and require police to get a "Feeney" warrant.[3]

  1. R v Evans, 1996 CanLII 248 (SC)
    R v Parr, 2016 BCCA 99 (CanLII) at para 2
  2. Parr, ibid. at para 2
  3. R v Sulyk, 1999 CanILI 13919 (SKPC) at para 4
    R v Meier, 2009 SKPC 30 (CanLII) at para 23

Requirements

Sections 529 and 529.3 of the Code were added to address the requirements for a "Feeney" Warrant.[1]

Section 529 states:

Including authorization to enter in warrant of arrest
529. (1) A warrant to arrest or apprehend a person issued by a judge or justice under this or any other Act of Parliament may authorize a peace officer, subject to subsection (2), to enter a dwelling-house described in the warrant for the purpose of arresting or apprehending the person if the judge or justice is satisfied by information on oath in writing that there are reasonable grounds to believe that the person is or will be present in the dwelling-house.
Execution
(2) An authorization to enter a dwelling-house granted under subsection (1) is subject to the condition that the peace officer may not enter the dwelling-house unless the peace officer has, immediately before entering the dwelling-house, reasonable grounds to believe that the person to be arrested or apprehended is present in the dwelling-house.
R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 529; 1994, c. 44, s. 52; 1997, c. 39, s. 2.


CCC

Warrant to enter dwelling-house
529.1 A judge or justice may issue a warrant in Form 7.1 authorizing a peace officer to enter a dwelling-house described in the warrant for the purpose of arresting or apprehending a person identified or identifiable by the warrant if the judge or justice is satisfied by information on oath that there are reasonable grounds to believe that the person is or will be present in the dwelling-house and that

(a) a warrant referred to in this or any other Act of Parliament to arrest or apprehend the person is in force anywhere in Canada;
(b) grounds exist to arrest the person without warrant under paragraph 495(1)(a) or (b) or section 672.91; or
(c) grounds exist to arrest or apprehend without warrant the person under an Act of Parliament, other than this Act.

1997, c. 39, s. 2; 2002, c. 13, s. 23.


CCC

Reasonable terms and conditions
529.2 Subject to section 529.4, the judge or justice shall include in a warrant referred to in section 529 or 529.1 any terms and conditions that the judge or justice considers advisable to ensure that the entry into the dwelling-house is reasonable in the circumstances.
1997, c. 39, s. 2.


CCC

Authority to enter dwelling without warrant
529.3 (1) Without limiting or restricting any power a peace officer may have to enter a dwelling-house under this or any other Act or law, the peace officer may enter the dwelling-house for the purpose of arresting or apprehending a person, without a warrant referred to in section 529 or 529.1 authorizing the entry, if the peace officer has reasonable grounds to believe that the person is present in the dwelling-house, and the conditions for obtaining a warrant under section 529.1 exist but by reason of exigent circumstances it would be impracticable to obtain a warrant.
(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), exigent circumstances include circumstances in which the peace officer

(a) has reasonable grounds to suspect that entry into the dwelling-house is necessary to prevent imminent bodily harm or death to any person; or
(b) has reasonable grounds to believe that evidence relating to the commission of an indictable offence is present in the dwelling-house and that entry into the dwelling-house is necessary to prevent the imminent loss or imminent destruction of the evidence.

...
1997, c. 39, s. 2.


CCC

Section 529.4 permits the judge authorizing a dwelling-house entry under s. 529 or 529.1, to omit announcing their presence before entry.

Section 529.5 permits the officer to apply for an entry warrant by telewarrant.[2]

  1. R v Neufeld, 2013 MBQB 46 (CanLII) at para 56
  2. See Telewarrants

Executing Warrant

Omitting announcement before entry
529.4 (1) A judge or justice who authorizes a peace officer to enter a dwelling-house under section 529 or 529.1, or any other judge or justice, may authorize the peace officer to enter the dwelling-house without prior announcement if the judge or justice is satisfied by information on oath that there are reasonable grounds to believe that prior announcement of the entry would

(a) expose the peace officer or any other person to imminent bodily harm or death; or
(b) result in the imminent loss or imminent destruction of evidence relating to the commission of an indictable offence.

Execution of authorization
(2) An authorization under this section is subject to the condition that the peace officer may not enter the dwelling-house without prior announcement despite being authorized to do so unless the peace officer has, immediately before entering the dwelling-house,

(a) reasonable grounds to suspect that prior announcement of the entry would expose the peace officer or any other person to imminent bodily harm or death; or
(b) reasonable grounds to believe that prior announcement of the entry would result in the imminent loss or imminent destruction of evidence relating to the commission of an indictable offence.

Exception
(3) A peace officer who enters a dwelling-house without a warrant under section 529.3 may not enter the dwelling-house without prior announcement unless the peace officer has, immediately before entering the dwelling-house,

(a) reasonable grounds to suspect that prior announcement of the entry would expose the peace officer or any other person to imminent bodily harm or death; or
(b) reasonable grounds to believe that prior announcement of the entry would result in the imminent loss or imminent destruction ofs evidence relating to the commission of an indictable offence.

1997, c. 39, s. 2.


Telewarrant

See also: Telewarrants

Telewarrant
529.5 If a peace officer believes that it would be impracticable in the circumstances to appear personally before a judge or justice to make an application for a warrant under section 529.1 or an authorization under section 529 or 529.4, the warrant or authorization may be issued on an information submitted by telephone or other means of telecommunication and, for that purpose, section 487.1 applies, with any modifications that the circumstances require, to the warrant or authorization.
1997, c. 39, s. 2.


CCC

See Also