Stanley Cup rioter William Fisher dies at New Westminster hospital

One of the last two people to be sentenced in connection with Vancouver's 2011 Stanley Cup riots is dead, says Corrections Canada.

Fisher died the day he was to begin a three-year sentence at Pacific Institution in Abbotsford

A car burns behind a police officer during the Vancouver riot after Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final in 2011. William Fisher was one of 293 people to be sentenced in connection with the riot. (Darryl Dyck/Canadian Press)

One of the last two people to be sentenced in connection with Vancouver's 2011 Stanley Cup riot is dead, says the Correctional Service of Canada.

William Fisher, 30,  died at a hospital in New Westminster, B.C. on Thursday. 

Deputy Warden Corinne Justason said Fisher was to have started serving a three-year sentence starting Feb. 19, but died before he could be moved to the Pacific Institution in Abbotsford, B.C. from the custody of BC Corrections.

She said the police and the Coroners Service have been notified of his death and the Correctional Service of Canada will review the incident. 

BC Corrections spokesperson Cindy Rose called the death a tragedy, and said the organization would also look into what happened.

"Safety is BC Corrections' top priority, and we are conducting a Critical Incident Review to investigate the circumstances, relevant history, and possible contributing factors preceding this death, to make recommendations that may reduce the likelihood of similar incident in the future," said Rose in e-mail to CBC News.

No more details about Fisher's death were released. 

Recently sentenced

Fisher was handed a sentence of up to three years in prison after being convicted for violently assaulting a Good Samaritan in the midst of the 2011 Stanley Cup riot.

In his reasons for sentence, Judge Reginald Harris said Fisher's actions demonstrated a "complete disregard for social order and the safety of all those within the downtown core."

He and Jeffrey Milne were the last of 293 people to be sentenced in relation to the mayhem which rocked downtown streets in the aftermath of the Vancouver Canucks' Stanley Cup final loss in June 2011.

Fisher participated in the riot for about two-and-a-half hours, committing three assaults and confronting police lines in multiple locations.

He stole clothing from a men's store and was convicted of a series of assaults on three different Good Samaritans.

The most serious of those saw both Fisher and Milne combine to beat a defenseless man into unconsciousness.

He was sentenced for:

  • Taking part in a riot.
  • Disguising face with intent to commit indictable offence.
  • Mischief. 
  • Assault. 
  • Aggravated assault. 
  • Breaking and entering.
  • Failing to remain at scene of an accident.
  • Breach of recognizance.


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