The family of the prisoner who died in Bordeaux wants an investigation into racism in prison

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The family of the prisoner who died in Bordeaux wants an investigation into racism in the prison environment

Nicous D'Andre Spring, who went by the artist name Yk Lyrical, should have been released from prison the day before his death.

Relatives of Nicous D'Andre Spring , who died following an altercation with guards that occurred on Christmas Eve at the Bordeaux prison, where he was illegally detained, are calling for an investigation by the Québec Ombudsman into racism in the prison system.

The Red Coalition, a non-profit organization whose goal is to eliminate the practice of racial profiling and systemic racism in Canada, said in a statement released Thursday that it is the Red Coalition. will file a complaint on behalf of the family with the Québec Ombudsman.

Nicous D'Andre Spring is described as an aspiring artist, son, grandson, brother, cousin, nephew, mentor to young people and friend to many. According to the organization, the young man was also receiving support to manage his mental health at the time of his death.

Nicous D'Andre Spring, 21, died the day after he should have been released from the Montreal Detention Facility, commonly known as the Bordeaux prison.

The Montreal Detention Facility, also known as Bordeaux Prison

According to information available to Radio-Canada, the young man died following an altercation with correctional officers who had put a spit mask on him for protection. These masks are used to prevent someone from spitting or biting. Officers also reportedly used pepper spray at least twice in an attempt to calm him down.

Nicous D'Andre Spring was then reportedly put in solitary confinement. Shortly after, medical services were called in an attempt to resuscitate him.

According to Nicous D'Andre Spring's sister, Sarafina Dennie, his brother should have get mental health support rather than being treated by correctional officers like a rabid animal.

Correctional officers are supposed to be trained to deal with inmates with special needs, she wrote.

Sarafina Dennie has also said she is determined to do everything to ensure that justice is done in this case. She wishes what happened to her brother didn't happen to someone else.

Members of the family of Nicous D'Andre Spring at a vigil in his memory, in Montreal

According to the Quebec Ministry of Public Security, the young detainee should not have been in prison at the time of the events. A judge had indeed granted him a release as of December 23.

The ministry also clarified that two other detainees who appeared in court on December 23 had not been released the next day.

Neither the detention center management nor the department was able to explain why these detainees, including Nicous D'Andre Spring, were not released on the due date.

< p class="e-p">The Sûreté du Québec and the Coroner's Office are currently investigating Mr. Spring's death. The Ministry of Public Security has opened an administrative investigation.

A corrections officer in Bordeaux has been temporarily relieved of his duties after the preliminary analysis of the events by the Deputy Minister of Correctional Services of the Ministry of Public Security.

The ministry also confirmed last Saturday, in an email to The Canadian Press, that a manager of the Bordeaux prison had been relieved of his duties on December 29.

In an interview earlier this week, Mathieu Lavoie, president of the Syndicat des agents de la paix en services correctionnels du Québec, said its members put a spit mask on Mr. Spring's face as he sputtered toward the guards. when he spoke. And the correctional officers used pepper spray because he wouldn't calm down, Mr. Lavoie added.

According to him, it is likely that Mr. Spring was carrying still the mask when the guards sprayed it with pepper spray. The young man was then taken under a decontamination shower, before being sprayed again and transferred to an isolation cell.

Michael Arruda, a former Montreal police officer and crisis intervention specialist, said he was very concerned that guards used a spit mask and pepper spray at the same time.

“These are two tools for two different intervention strategies that are not meant to be used together. At this point, with the information we have, I am concerned. »

— Michael Arruda, ex-Montreal policeman

Mr. Arruda, however, maintained that he would need to know more about what happened.

With information from La Presse canadienne

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