Colton Fehr

Assistant Professor

BA, JD (Saskatchewan), LLM (Toronto), PhD (Alberta)

Dr. Fehr researches and teaches in the areas of criminal law, criminal procedure, evidence, and constitutional law. He was called to the Saskatchewan bar in 2014. Prior to joining TRU Law in 2022, Dr. Fehr was a law clerk at the Provincial Court of Saskatchewan, Crown prosecutor for Saskatchewan Justice, and an Assistant Professor in the School of Criminology at Simon Fraser University where he taught courses on criminal law, criminal procedure, evidence, and criminal justice policy.

Dr. Fehr’s work has appeared in various law journals, including the Journal of International Criminal Justice, McGill Law Journal, Queen’s Law Journal, UBC Law Review, Alberta Law Review, Dalhousie Law Journal, Manitoba Law Journal, National Journal of Constitutional Law, Canadian Journal of Law & Technology, Canadian Criminal Law Review, and Criminal Law Quarterly. Dr. Fehr is also the author of Constitutionalizing Criminal Law (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2022). The book critiques the Supreme Court of Canada’s development of the relationship between criminal and constitutional law and recommends placing much less reliance on the “principles of fundamental justice” when using the Charter to shape the criminal law.

Dr. Fehr will be teaching criminal law, criminal procedure, and a seminar on the Charter and its intersection with the criminal law.

  1. Books
    1. Constitutionalizing Criminal Law (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2022)
  2. Articles, Chapters, and Comments
    1. “Defending the Castle: Search Incident to Arrest after R v Stairs” (2022) 26 Canadian Criminal Law Review (forthcoming).
    2. “Criminal Records for Marijuana Possession: Is Eligibility for a Pardon Enough?” (2022) 45 Manitoba Law Journal (forthcoming).
    3. “Should the Common Law Authorize Random Stops on Private Property?” (2022) 70 Criminal Law Quarterly (forthcoming).
    4. “Vaccine Passports and the Charter: Do they Actually Infringe Rights?” (2022) 43 National Journal of Constitutional Law (forthcoming).
    5. “Why De Minimis is a Defence: A Reply to Professor Coughlan” (2022) 68 McGill Law Journal (forthcoming).
    6. “Deterring Rights Litigation: R v Basque” (2022) 60 Criminal Reports (7th) (forthcoming).
    7. “Mandatory Covid-19 Vaccinations and the Charter” (2022) 33:1 Constitutional Forum 7-18.
    8. “Familial DNA Searching and the Charter” in Chris Hunt and Robert Diab, eds, Digital Privacy and the Charter (Toronto: Thomson Reuters, 2021) 261-81.
    9. “The Constitutionality of Excluding Duress as a Defence to Murder” (2021) 44:4 Manitoba Law Journal 109-33.
    10. “Criminal Law and Digital Technologies: Drawing Lessons from the Canadian and American Experiences” (2021) 53:3 University of British Columbia Law Review 651-702.
    11. “Tying Down the Tracks: Severity, Method, and the Text of Section 12 of the Charter” (2021) 25:2 Canadian Criminal Law Review 235-53.
    12. “Re-thinking the Process for Administering Oaths and Affirmations” (2020) 43:2 Dalhousie Law Journal 637-56.
    13. “Automatism and the Burden of Proof: An Alternative Approach” (2020) 25:2 Canadian Criminal Law Review 115-22.
    14. “Re-thinking the Instrumental Rationality Principles of Fundamental Justice” (2020) 58:1 Alberta Law Review 133-52.
    15. “Criminal Law and Digital Technologies: An Institutional Approach to Rule Creation in a Rapidly Advancing and Complex Setting” (2019) 65:1 McGill Law Journal 67-113.
    16. “Instrumental Rationality and General Deterrence” (2019) 57:1 Alberta Law Review 53-68.
    17. “Consent and the Constitution” (2019) 42:3 Manitoba Law Journal 217-48.
    18. “A Proposal for Police Acquisition of ISP Subscriber Information on Administrative Demand in Child Pornography Investigations” (2019) 24:2 Canadian Criminal Law Review 235-47.
    19. “Infusing Reconciliation into the Sentencing Process” (2019) 28:2 Constitutional Forum 25-30.
    20. “Digital Evidence and the Adversarial System: A Recipe for Disaster?” (2018) 16:2 Canadian Journal of Law and Technology 437-57.
    21. “The ‘Individualistic’ Approach to Arbitrariness, Overbreadth, and Gross Disproportionality” (2018) 51:1 University of British Columbia Law Review 55-74.
    22. “The Constitutionality of Using Production Orders to Obtain Stored Communications Content” (2018) 23:2 Canadian Criminal Law Review 171-82.
    23. “Self-Defence and the Constitution” (2017) 43:1 Queen’s Law Journal 85-122.
    24. “(Re-)Constitutionalizing Duress and Necessity” (2017) 42:2 Queen’s Law Journal 99-134.
    25. “Reconceptualizing De Minimis Non Curat Lex” (2017) 64:1 Criminal Law Quarterly 200-24.
    26. “Domestic Detention under Article 78(2) of the ICC Statute” (2017) 15:1 Journal of International Criminal Justice 31-50.
    27. “The (Near) Death of Duress” (2015) 62:2 Criminal Law Quarterly 123-49.
    28. “Divorced from (Technological) Reality: A Response to the Supreme Court of Canada’s Reasons in R v Fearon” (2015) 20:1 Canadian Criminal Law Review 93-110 (with Jared Biden).
    29. “Cell Phone Searches Incident to Lawful Arrest: A Case Comment on the Ontario Court of Appeal’s Decision in R v Fearon” (2014) 60:3 Criminal Law Quarterly 343-59.
  3. Book Reviews
    1. Book Review of Sexual Regulation and the Law: A Canadian Perspective by Richard Jochelson and James Gacek (2020) 57:4 Alberta Law Review 1045-52.
    2. Book Review of Reconciling Sovereignties: Aboriginal Nations and Canada by Felix Hoehn (2013) 76:2 Saskatchewan Law Review 366-69.
  4. Op-Eds
    1. “Enacting the Charter made us more Liberal and Less Democratic” The Hub (20 April 2022), online: (with Steven Penney).
Colton Fehr