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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

We Pay Tax So Employee's Of Corrections Canada Can Sit Around & Laugh While Watching A Young Person Kill Killthemselves


Ashley Smith guard tells inquest he was following orders

Teen choked to death on floor of prison cell in 2007


CBC - A prison guard who
 recorded the final minutes of  Ashley  Smith's life told a 
coroner's inquest today in Toronto  that he  was following 
orders when he didn't intervene in the  choking death of the 
teenager.
Smith was 19 when she died in October 2007 after she tied a 
ligature around her neck in her cell at the Grand Valley 
Institute for Women in Kitchener, Ont.
Asked why he didn't step in, Valentino Burnett said that he 
might have been disciplined if he had disobeyed an order 
not to intervene when the 19-year-old Moncton woman 
choked herself, something she had done many times before.
Guards had been told Smith's actions were a ploy for 
attention, and that they should stay back.
"If an order is given to me and I don't agree with it, there's a 
grievance procedure," he said on Tuesday during his second 
day of testimony.
Burnett and three other prison employees were charged in 
Smith’s death, but the charges were dropped.

Video shows events leading up to choking

On Monday, jurors saw a video that shows guards watching 
as Smith choked to death with a piece of cloth tied around 
her neck as she was face down in her cell.
When the recording begins, the guards had been debating 
for about 10 minutes about what to do about Smith. The 
guards had been told she was seeking attention, and not to 
intervene unless she stopped breathing.
Smith could be seen wedged between the bed and the wall 
on the floor of her cell, gasping for breath but not speaking.
Another 10 minutes pass before the guards enter her cell 
and cut the cloth from around her neck, after which they 
leave the cell and continue to watch outside the door.
Smith doesn’t move, and after a few more minutes, the 
guards enter the cell and try to rouse her by slapping her on 
the back, without any response.
The guards begin to perform CPR, though one of them is 
heard swearing that she hasn’t had any CPR training in 11 
years.
A nurse arrives and an ambulance is called as the guards 
continue to perform CPR until the emergency workers arrive. 
They work on Smith for another 30 minutes, before she is 
put on a gurney and wheeled out of prison to the hospital.
Under questioning on Monday, Burnett acknowledged that 
“in a perfect world,” he would have entered the cell to save 
Smith.
Burnett was a fill-in guard who had just completed a night 
shift and was about to leaving for home when an "all call" 
sounded, indicating an emergency. He turned and went to 
respond, and found a video camera thrust into his hands.
Outside court, Smith family lawyer Julian Falconer said he 
had little sympathy for the guards who failed to save the 
teen's life.
"Human beings are human beings; good people do bad 
things," Falconer said.
"On that day, a group of guards did bad things."
After Burnett stepped down as witness, jurors were given a 
copy of the correctional investigator's report, which is highly 
critical of Smith's treatment.
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