A One-Day Snapshot of Aboriginal Youth in Custody Across Canada

Chapter 5 - Ontario (continued)

5.6 Sentence Length

Figure 5.6 and Table 5.5 describes the various sentence lengths being served by Aboriginal youth included in the snapshot. Twenty-eight percent of youth in Ontario were sentenced to custody for 50-99 days, while 18% were sentenced for 150 to 199 days and 10% for 100-149 days. Almost two-thirds (65%) of the youth were sentenced for 1 to 199 days. Meanwhile, 82% of the youth were sentenced to 1 to 299 days. The median custody length was 152 days.

Data concerning sentence length must be interpreted with caution, as longer sentences are more likely to be captured in a one-day snapshot than are shorter ones; hence, the former may be over-represented in the results. Therefore, the sentence distribution in Figure 5.6 and Table 5.5 (and the median custody length) do not necessarily represent typical sentence lengths.

Figure 5.6 Sentence Length Being Served on Snapshot Day.

Figure 5.6 - Sentence Length Being Served on Snapshot Day.
[Description]

Source: One-Day Snapshot of Aboriginal Youth in Custody (2001).
Prepared by: Research and Statistics Division, Department of Justice Canada .

A larger proportion of females than males was sentenced to custody for less than 99 days (54% versus 33%). In fact, 81% of the females were sentenced to 199 days or less, compared to 61% of the males.

An analysis of age and sentence length provides some evidence that older youth tended to serve longer sentences in comparison to younger youth. For instance, 30% of those 18 years of age and older were serving a sentence of 200 days or more, compared to 27% of the 16-17 year olds, and 23% of the 14-15 year olds. Meanwhile, 43% of the 14-15 year olds were serving a sentence of 149 days or less, compared to 25% of the 16-17 year olds, and 22% of those 18 years of age or older (see table 5.5). However, revealing that older youth were serving longer sentences than younger youth was expected given that older youth were most likely to have an MSO or MSC for a crime against the person - offences that typically receive longer sentences.

Date modified: