Death of the detainee in Bordeaux: the family calls for an independent investigation
Prison of Bordeaux, located in the borough of Ahuntsic-Cartierville.
The family of Nicous D'Andre Spring, who died on December 24 in Bordeaux prison where he was in illegal detention, is calling for the opening of a public coroner's inquiry and the dissemination of images and videos of the events. which led to the death of the young man of 21 years.
It’s the civil rights group, the Red Coalition, which announced the request of the family this morning, during a press conference, in Montreal. Two days earlier, the family had called for an investigation into systemic racism and racism in prisons.
“We are asking for a public coroner's inquest, a bit like the one that was done for the murder of Joyce Echaquan. A public inquiry where former detainees, detention center guards, or any other person concerned will be able to come and testify,” said Alain Babineau, director of racial profiling and public security at the Red Coalition.
The family deplores the low amount of information to which they have access. She also wants an independent autopsy to be carried out on the remains of Nicous D'Andre Spring and that any recording of the moments preceding the young man's death, “if they exist”, be made public.
“You would reasonably think that inside a penitentiary, there are security cameras. Regarding the autopsy, unfortunately, given the current situation, black communities do not trust the government and public institutions, given racism and discrimination,” added Alain Babineau, in a telephone interview with Métro.
The Red Coalition and the family of the deceased inmate also asked, during the press conference, for the creation of a committee of citizens to oversee correctional institutions in Quebec. The establishment of such a committee could be inspired by the model of the Police Services Board(police oversight committees) present in Ontario, according to Alain Babineau. “These are people chosen from the community who sit and who can, in particular, guide the Ombudsman des services correctionnels du Québec (the public ombudsman) during his annual inspections of various departments”.
The creation of such a committee could also be a gateway for whistleblowers who do not trust the institutions, believes Alain Babineau.
Recall that Nicous D’Andre Spring died at the following an altercation with correctional officers, during which the latter allegedly used cayenne pepper and an anti-spitting mask. The Sûreté du Québec (SQ), the Coroner's Office and the Ministry of Public Security have opened investigations following the death of the young man who was accused of assaulting a peace officer, possession of a weapon and criminal harassment.