Canadian Criminal Sentencing/Offences/Careless Use or Storage of a Firearm

Careless Use or Storage of a Firearm
s. 86 of the Crim. Code
Election / Plea
Crown ElectionHybrid
JurisdictionProv. Court
SC Judge + PI (I)
SC Jury + PI (I) (536(2))
Summary Dispositions
Avail. Disp.Discharge (730)

Suspended Sentence (731(1)(a))
Fine (734)
Fine + Probation (731(1)(b))
Jail (718.3, 787)
Jail + Probation (731(1)(b))
Jail + Fine (734)

Conditional Sentence (742.1)
Maximum6 months jail or $5,000 fine
Indictable Dispositions
Avail. Disp.same as summary
Maximum2 years (first)
5 years (second or more)
Offence Elements
Sentence Principles
Sentence Digests



Careless use of firearm, etc.
86. (1) Every person commits an offence who, without lawful excuse, uses, carries, handles, ships, transports or stores a firearm, a prohibited weapon, a restricted weapon, a prohibited device or any ammunition or prohibited ammunition in a careless manner or without reasonable precautions for the safety of other persons.

(3) Every person who commits an offence under subsection (1) or (2)

(a) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment
(i) in the case of a first offence, for a term not exceeding two years, and
(ii) in the case of a second or subsequent offence, for a term not exceeding five years; or
(b) is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.

R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 86; 1991, c. 40, s. 3; 1995, c. 39, s. 139.


See also: Firearms Act, SC 1995, c 39 and Storage, Display, Transportation and Handling of Firearms by Individuals Regulations, SOR/98-209





Mitigating Factors

  • Youthful offender
  • guilty plea (early or late plea, amount of court resources saved)
  • no prior record or no related record

Ancillary Orders



  • R. v. Grice, 2008 ONCJ 476 -- $500 fine -- found accused was videotaping ex-wife in shower, found carelessly stored .22 cal rifle.