Manitoba

Inquest called into Remand Centre death of Errol Greene, wife says

For months now, Rochelle Pranteau has been asking for an inquest to look into the death of her husband, Errol Greene, who died while in custody at the Winnipeg Remand Centre. This week, she says, the office of Manitoba's chief medical examiner told her it will call for that inquest.

Rochelle Pranteau says chief medical examiner's office told her it will launch inquest into husband's death

Errol Greene suffered from two epileptic seizures and later died while in custody at the Winnipeg Remand Centre. An autopsy report revealed he was not administered his epilepsy medication. (Submitted by Rochelle Pranteau)

It's the news Rochelle Pranteau spent months waiting to hear: she says she's been told the office of Manitoba's chief medical examiner is calling an inquest into the death of her husband, Errol Greene, who died while in custody at the Winnipeg Remand Centre.

Pranteau received a call from the chief medical examiner's office Tuesday morning, saying the details around her husband's death were suspicious and an inquest could prevent the same thing from happening in the future, she said.

"I didn't know if I should have been happy or sad, because [I have] mixed emotions. But at least I know that we're going somewhere now, we're moving forward with this battle and it's not going to get shut down now," said Pranteau.

CBC has contacted the office of Manitoba's chief medical examiner. The director responded that the office had no comment at this time.

Died after seizure in Remand Centre

The battle for more information on Greene's last hours started for Pranteau on May 1 during a telephone conversation with her husband while he was in custody. 

Greene suffered from an epileptic seizure during that call, and Pranteau listened on the phone while corrections officers and other inmates responded to the medical emergency.

The next phone call Pranteau received was later that night after Greene was pronounced dead in hospital.

An autopsy report obtained by CBC News, dated Oct. 13, pointed to concerns around how the 26-year-old's epileptic seizure was handled by corrections officers, and said he was not administered his seizure-controlling medication while in custody at the Remand Centre.

While Pranteau says an inquest would be good news, she is nervous about backlash towards a family member who is currently in custody at the Winnipeg Remand Centre.

"It's going to take a long time, and it's going to be a battle with the government and taking on the justice system here," said Pranteau, who was told it could take two years for the inquest to wrap up.

CBC has heard from several inmates and corrections officers who fear reprisal for speaking out about their concerns about the Winnipeg Remand Centre.

Still, Pranteau is eager for the inquest to go forward.

"Things need to change. I don't want nobody to go through what I have to go through," said Pranteau.


If you have a story related to Manitoba jails, contact kim.kaschor@cbc.ca

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