Canadian High Court to Tackle Erotic Asphyxiation

OTTAWA—According to a report in the Montreal Gazette, on Oct. 7, the Supreme Court of Canada will consider the sexual rights of people who practice erotic asphyxiation.

The case arose after a woman, whose name has been withheld, filed criminal sexual assault charges against her common-law husband, identified in court papers only as "J.A.," claiming that he had sodomized her against her will after she had been consensually choked. The couple had apparently agreed on what would happen while the woman was unconscious, and getting fucked in the ass was not part of the play, the woman testified.

However, the Ontario Court of Appeal, earlier this year, reversed the husband's conviction, ruling that since the woman had given permission to be choked, she had to live with the consequences of what was done to her while she was unconscious.

"[T]o hold otherwise would be to deprive individuals of their personal autonomy by limiting their ability to make choices about who can touch their body and in what circumstances," a majority of the appeals court ruled.

In a dissenting opinion, appeals court Justice Harry LaForme argued that the condition of unconsciousness negated the woman's ability to consent, and therefore violated the long-established legal principle that "no" means "no."