The popular coroner’s inquest into the death of controversial teenager, Ashley Smith, is scheduled to hear testimony from the teenager’s mother, Coralee Smith. She will be testifying today in Toronto and speak truthfully of whatever she knows about her daughter’s stay in federal prison.
Ashley Smith was initially imprisoned at the age of 15, and she was only 19-years-old when she passed away at the Grand Valley Institution for Women in Kitchener, Ont., in October 2007. Smith allegedly committed suicide with a piece of cloth tightened around her neck while the guards, who were particularly ordered not to intervene, watched the whole incident from outside her cell. The troubled teenager was often kept in segregation and was shifted 17 times among nine different prisons in less than a year. Mrs. Smith informed a media outlet from her home in Dartmouth, N.S., last month, that “the only people who know anything are the hands-on people who were with her.”
The inquest began on Jan. 14, and so far has heard testimonials of several guards and a prison supervisor.Smith hope that the incident incurred with her daughter will help to bring a potentially positive change in the system and the attitude towards mentally imbalanced prisoners in Canadian prisons. She alleged that “Ashley couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, but I hope we can.” Additionally promised to give her testimony at the inquest on Wednesday with complete truthfulness and “be honest, and it’s gonna be from the heart.”
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