London

Second inmate at Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre dies in 2 days

A second inmate at the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre has died, just two days after the death of an inmate on Monday.

The second death occurred Wednesday, less than 48 hours after a 26-year-old inmate died in hospital

Tyler Lancha, 26, was found in medical distress in a cell at the Elgin-Middlesex Detention Centre on Sunday and later died in hospital. (Facebook)

A second inmate at the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre has died, just two days after the death of an inmate on Monday.

The Ministry of the Solicitor General confirmed the death in a statement issued Wednesday evening.

"The ministry can confirm that paramedics attended the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre (Wednesday) morning after an inmate was found in medical distress. The inmate was pronounced deceased in hospital," said ministry spokesperson Andrew Morrison.

He made no further comment.

The second death occurred less than 48 hours after another inmate, 26-year-old Tyler Lancha, was taken to hospital on Sunday and died on Monday evening, according to Kevin Egan, a lawyer representing the family.

"He was a son who was loved. He had a child of his own that's going to grow up now without a father," said Egan. "Every time I hear about one of these inmates who dies at EMDC, I think the first thing is profound sadness that we keep having these inquests and recommendations are made and nothing changes."

Egan, who spoke to CBC News on behalf of Lancha's family, said the initial investigation at the hospital indicated there were no signs of trauma and no signs of drug toxicity. The details of a full investigation are forthcoming.

In a statement, London police said their Major Crime Section is working with the office of the Chief Coroner on the investigation.

A spokesperson for the Ministry of the Solicitor General, Andrew Morrison, said the inmate was found in medical distress in his cell at EMDC. If the coroner determines that the death was anything other than natural causes, an inquest will be called, he said.

Egan says the criminal justice system is supposed to be set up to help these individuals overcome whatever or whoever has brought them into conflict with the law.

"The fact that Tyler was in trouble, I think speaks to a failure of our system as much as a failure of the individual," he said.

Lancha and the unidentified inmate who died Wednesday are the 17th and 18th persons to die at the provincial jail in South London since 2009.

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