Troubled Teen’s Mother, Coralee Smith, Records Her Testimony at the Inquest

Mother of the controversially troubled teen, Ashley Smith, gave her testimonial at the coroner’s inquest into the Moncton, N.B., teenager’s death in an Ontario courtroom on Wednesday afternoon. Smith was kept in prison more than five years ago, regarding which Coralee Smith, Ashley’s mother, testified that her daughter felt scared for most of the time.

Coralee Smith recorded her testimony, which highlighted that her daughter was afraid of other inmates. Smith remembered that “she said they were scary. It was a scary place, and ‘there were murderers and everything here, Mom.'” Ashley was initially imprisoned at the age 15, and when she was only 19 at the time, when she committed suicide at the Grand Valley Institution for Women in Kitchener, Ont., in October 2007, by tying a piece of cloth around her neck while guards, who were strictly ordered not to intervene in such case, stood by her cell door and watched the whole scene. Mrs. Smith is the first witness at the inquest who has no connection with either prison’s management or the medical systems.

Mrs. Smith shared stories and pictures of her daughter Ashley’s childhood. She reiterated the story of how she adopted Ashley while she was just three days old, and how she did her best to keep her face “smiling and happy” for most of her life. She added that “you never saw that girl without a smile on her face,” and that “most of her life she was smiling and happy.”

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