Death at Saint John halfway house remains a mystery
Ombudsman for federal inmates says an investigation must be launched into man's sudden death
Few details are emerging over the sudden death of a man earlier this month at the Parrtown Community Corrections Centre, a federal halfway house in Saint John.
Saint John Police Staff Sgt. Tanya LeBlanc said police were called to the halfway house on July 7 at 2:45 p.m.
The police say a man was dead but no foul play is suspected and their work is done.
Gregory Forestell, the province’s chief coroner, has opened an investigation into what is being described as a sudden, unexpected death at the corrections centre, which houses people released on parole and long-term offenders.
The Correctional Service of Canada will not provide any details about the man's death, citing privacy concerns.
However, Ivan Zinger, the general counsel at the Office of the Correctional Investigator, which is an ombudsman for federal inmates, said the federal department must investigate the case.
Zinger is aware of the death and said a board of investigation will be convened to determine what happened to the man.
Statistics show 56 offenders died in federal custody, including 12 by suicide, in 2012-2013.
The Parrtown Community Correctional Centre is the only federally run halfway house in the province.
It can house up to 26 offenders, offering supervision and programs for people near the end of their sentence.