In 2010, Luke Stewart came to Toronto during the G20 summit to participate in protests. He went to Allan Gardens to take place in a rally and march. Police had formed a perimeter around the Gardens and required people to submit to a bag inspection in order to enter.
Luke refused to let police inspect his bag and challenged their authority to stop him going into the Gardens. When he tried to go past the police, he was stopped, his bag was searched and his swimming goggles were taken off him. The police ultimately disbanded their perimeter and stopped inspecting people’s bags as they entered the Gardens. We intervened in this case to argue that the police had no lawful authority to demand these bag searches as a condition of entering the Gardens in the first place. In this situation, the police had no authority to demand to search demonstrators entering the park.
Mr. Stewart brought an action challenging the Police’s use of mass and indiscriminate searches of protesters during the G20 protests. His case was appealed to the Ontario Court of Appeal from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, and in 2020 (ten years later) the Court sided with Luke and CCLA: police cannot search you without committing a crime.