Ontario Speeding up Process to File Criminal Charges

Published on November 06, 2020

New digital platform will allow police to spend more time preventing and investigating crime

November 6, 2020

Solicitor General

SAULT STE. MARIE — The Ontario government, in collaboration with the Ontario Court of Justice and policing partners, is launching a new eIntake digital platform that will accelerate and simplify the way criminal charges are filed and managed.

This new initiative will allow police officers to digitally file criminal charges to the court as an alternative to the current requirement of appearing before a Justice of the Peace. The eIntake platform will also allow Justices of the Peace to enter their decisions and sign documents digitally and request additional information from police online.

"We are providing frontline police officers with the tools and support they need to better protect the communities they serve," said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones. "The eIntake platform will enable police to spend more time preventing and investigating criminal activity by cutting down on the hours they must spend filling out paperwork and travelling back and forth to courthouses. This new platform is an important step toward building a more connected criminal justice system that will strengthen public safety across Ontario and hold criminals accountable."

The eIntake digital platform was successfully piloted in Barrie and Orillia this year and will be available in courthouses across northeastern Ontario by mid-December. The platform will be available provincewide by 2022, leading to a criminal justice system that is stronger and digitally connected from end-to-end.

"Our government's record of accelerating the modernization of the justice system during Ontario's COVID-19 emergency and recovery also extends to the criminal justice sector, where we are focused on digitizing and connecting systems to support the work of prosecutors, police and the court," said Attorney General Doug Downey. "We are committed to establishing new and innovative ways of delivering justice remotely and online, and we will continue to work with partners to build a more connected and resilient criminal justice system that responds to how the world has changed."

"The Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police (OACP) has worked closely with our government and justice partners during the development and implementation of this important step in the modernization of Ontario's justice system," said OACP Executive Director Jeff McGuire. "We are pleased with the success of the platform in Barrie and Orillia and strongly support the implementation of the new eIntake digital platform across the province."

Implementing the eIntake system is part of a series of digital initiatives that the government is taking to build a more connected justice system that is seamless, simple and efficient. The eIntake system is also part of Ontario Onwards: Ontario's COVID-19 Action Plan for a People-Focused Government, and is one of the more than 30 projects that will change the way people and businesses interact with government.

Quick Facts

  • The eIntake system was successfully piloted in Barrie and Orillia from November 2019 to September 2020.
  • The province and the Ontario Court of Justice Court started rolling out the new application to courthouses in Sault Ste. Marie, Haileybury and Cochrane and expect to have it implemented across the Northeast region by mid-December, in the Northwest region by winter 2021 and provincewide by early 2022.
  • More than 225,000 charging documents – known as Informations – are filed in person by police officers across the province each year.

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