Death On The Pitch: Rugby Violence And Criminal Law In Canada

Curtis Fogel, Chadd Sine

Abstract


On May 9, 2007, a 15-year-old named Manny Castillo was driven head first into the ground during a high school rugby match in Canada. Castillo suffered severe head, neck, and spinal cord injuries that led to his death in the days that followed the match. The opposing player, unnamed under the Canadian Youth Criminal Justice Act, was charged with and convicted of manslaughter for his deadly act on the pitch. This paper explores: (i) the events on the pitch that led to Castillo’s death, (ii) the legal issues that prosecutors faced in gaining a successful conviction in the rugby death, (iii) a comparison to other cases internationally where rugby players have died on the pitch, and (iv) prevention strategies to ensure a safer playing field. The data used in this study include existing literature on rugby violence and the law, media articles, and legal case files.

Keywords


Rugby; Sports violence; Death in sport; Criminal law

Full Text:

PDF

References


[1] Anderson, J. (1998). Mens sana in Corpore Sano? Violence in sport and the criminal law. ISLR, 6, 64.

[2] Anderson, J. (2001). Citius, altius, fortuis? A study of criminal violence in sport. Marq. Sports L. Rev. 11, 87.

[3] Caddell, R. (2004). The referee’s liability for catastrophic sports injuries—A U.K. perspective. Marq. Sports L. Rev., 15, 415.

[4] Cornelius, S. (2004). Liability of referees for injuries sustained by players. J. S. Afr. L. , 412.

[5] David, P. W. (1992). Sport and the law—A new field for lawyers? N.Z. Recent. L. Rev. 80.

[6] Dobinson, I., & Thorpe, D. (2009). What’s wrong with the commissioner: Some lessonsfrom down under. Seton Hall J. Sports & Ent. L., 19, 105.

[7] Fafinski, S. (2005). Consent and the rules of the game: The interplay of civil and criminal liability for sporting injuries. J. Crim. L. , 69, 414.

[8] Gabbett, T. (2004). The influence on training and match intensity on injuries in rugby league. Journal of Sports Sciences, 22, 409.

[9] Gabbett, T., & Domrow, N. (2005). Risk factors for injury in subelite rugby players. American Journal of Sports Medicine, 33, 428.

[10]      Gardiner, S., & Felix, A. (1994). Juridification of the football field: Strategies for giving law the elbow. Marq. Sports L. Rev. 5, 189.

[11] Gibbs, N. (1993). Injuries in professional rugby. American Journal of Sports Medicine, 21, 696.

[12]      Gissane, C., Jennings, D., White, J., & Cumine, A. (1998). Injury in summer rugby league football. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 32(2), 149.

[13]      Heywood, R., & Charlish, P. (2007). Schoolmaster tackled hard over rugby incident. Tort L. Rev. , 162.

[14]      Hoskins, W., Pollard, H., Hough, K., & Tully, C. (2006). Injury in rugby league. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 9, 46.

[15] King, D. A., Hume, P. A., Gianotti, S., & Clark, T. (2011). Neck back and spine injuries in amateur rugby League. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 14(2), 126.

[16]      Livings, B. (2006). A different ball game—Why the nature of consent in contact sports undermines a unitary approach. J. Crim. L. , 71, 534.

[17]      McCutcheon, J. P. (1994). Sports violence, consent, and the criminal law. N. Ir. Legal. Q. , 45, 267.

[18]      McMurray, E. E. (2003). I expected common sense to prevail: Vowles v. Evans, amateur rugby, and referee negligence in the U.K. Brook. J. Int’l L., 29, 1307.

[19]      McLoughlin, T. F. (2009). Have recent changes to rugby union laws of scrummage reduced serious cervical spine injuries? Journal of Sports Science and Medicine, 8, 148.

[20]      Miller, G. (1986). Australian aspects of violence in sports.  Int’l Legal Prac, 11, 21.

[21]      Pendlebury, A. (2006). Perceptions of playing culture in sport: The problem of diverse opinion in the light of Barnes. ESLJ, 4, 37.

[22]      Ryan, R. (2013). Collapsing scrums and sticky wickets: Sports injuries and the laws of negligence.  ISLR, 11, 60.

[23]      Silver, J. R. (1988). The need to make rugby safer. British Medical Journal, 296, 429.

[24]      Standen, J. (2009). The manly sports: The problematic use of criminal law to regulate sports violence. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, 99, 619.

[25]Webb, E. J.,  Campbell, D. T., Schwartz, R. D., & Sechrest, L. (2000). Unobtrusive measures. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968%2F2502

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Reminder

How to do online submission to another Journal?

If you have already registered in Journal A, then how can you submit another article to Journal B? It takes two steps to make it happen:

1. Register yourself in Journal B as an Author

Find the journal you want to submit to in CATEGORIES, click on “VIEW JOURNAL”, “Online Submissions”, “GO TO LOGIN” and “Edit My Profile”. Check “Author” on the “Edit Profile” page, then “Save”.

2. Submission

Go to “User Home”, and click on “Author” under the name of Journal B. You may start a New Submission by clicking on “CLICK HERE”.

 

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Copyright © Canadian Academy of Oriental and Occidental Culture (CAOOC)

Frontiers of Legal Research Editorial office

Address: 730, 77e AV, Laval, Quebec, H7V 4A8, Canada

Telephone: 1-514-558 6138

Email: flr@cscanada.net; flr@cscanada.org; office@cscanada.net