Keeping Up Is Hard to Do:
A Trial Judge’s Reading Blog

R. v. Turner, 2022 ABCA 11, January 14, 2022, at paragraph 34

A discharge, either absolute or conditional, is an extraordinary disposition – to be granted sparingly – not to be utilized in the absence of compelling reasons that make it obvious the offender’s personal interest in avoiding a criminal record is far more important than the community’s interests in convicting criminals. Promotion of the community’s interests requires that there be a public record of those who commit crimes and a formal state denunciation of criminal conduct. The latter achieves the primary statutory objective of sentencing – “to denounce unlawful conduct and the harm done to victims or to the community that is caused by unlawful conduct”.