Canadian judge acquits rugby player of assault

April 11, 2009

accident, criminal law

Kamloops, BC


A Canadian judge acquitted of assault a high-school player whose punch broke an opponent rugby player’s nose and cheekbone.  In a bedeviling display of logic, the British Columbia provincial court judge ruled that players consent to violent contact within and certain violent conduct outwith the rules of the game.  Frame J stated that there are certain aggressive actions that are taken in the course of a scrum which appear to be acknowledged by most players including eye gouging, head butting, raking, kneeing, elbowing, kicking and punching and that there is implied consent to a range of injuries from bruises and broken noses to broken necks.  The defendant was exonerated on the grounds that the punch was randomly thrown and not intended to target and hit the injured plaintiff and, as such, fit within rugby’s unwritten but accepted code of conduct.  Whilst there is no suggestion that a civil suit will be launched, a strong case could be argued that the defendant player was guilty in negligence.  Stay tuned ….

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One Comment on “Canadian judge acquits rugby player of assault”

  1. mrred Says:

    Love this blog I’ll be back when I have more time.


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