Nova Scotia

Victoria Paul's family awaits inquiry nod

Nova Scotia's justice minister has yet to decide whether to proceed with an inquiry into the death of Victoria Paul in 2009.

Indian Brook woman jailed, died of massive stroke two years ago

Nova Scotia's justice minister has yet to decide whether to proceed with an inquiry into the death of Victoria Paul in 2009.

Justice Minister Ross Landry and Premier Darrell Dexter are expected to meet soon with the Nova Scotia Native Women's Association, which is backing the Paul family's demand for an independent inquiry.

Landry said a review under the Police Act would be faster.

"I think it's important to focus on that evening and get clarity on the facts, and then put recommendations forward based on what our findings are at that time," he said.

He said no decision has been made.

Paul, 44, was arrested for public drunkenness on the night of Aug. 28, 2009, and taken to a jail cell in Truro. The next day she spent hours in medical distress, but was only taken to hospital that afternoon.

Paul died days later in hospital in Halifax. Doctors determined that she had suffered a massive stroke.

Family members question whether Paul received the proper care while at the Truro lockup and wonder if she would be alive today if she had received medical attention sooner.

An investigation by Halifax Regional Police concluded that Truro police acted appropriately.

Cheryl Maloney, president of the native women's group, said the Paul family might have been satisfied with a Police Act investigation in 2009, but not now.

"This is a long process in itself to be getting answers. I think that itself is worthy of an inquiry," Maloney said.

She said the Paul family never received the full report by Halifax police, just the executive summary.

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