‘Our story is all too common’: Family calls for inquest into death of inmate at Manitoba jail

WINNIPEG — The family of William Walter Ahmo is speaking out after he died in hospital a week after an incident that involved corrections officers, and are calling for an inquest and independent investigation into his death.

On Feb. 7, RCMP said a 45-year-old inmate was reported to be unresponsive as a result of an “incident” with corrections officers and the inmate was taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries. The inmate, later identified as Ahmo, died at the Health Sciences Centre on Feb. 14.

The RCMP confirmed Ahmo’s death on Monday.

Ahmo’s family is now calling for “transparency, accountability and justice.”

“The circumstances of Will being taken to hospital are suspicious, and we have heard disturbing reports about the behaviour of Correctional Officers prior to his death,” the family said in a written statement.

The family said they had previously heard from Ahmo saying the officers treated several inmates, including himself, as “less than human.”

“Our story is all too common. Will should not have been in jail and should not have been made a victim of Canada’s racist justice system.”

Details about the incident between Ahmo and corrections officers have not been released. The RCMP’s Major Crimes Section is currently investigating.

The family said they are calling for an independent investigation and they want the Chief Medical Examiner of Manitoba to call an inquest into his death.

“Not by the Winnipeg Police, the RCMP or the IIU, all of whom have shown that they cannot be trusted to ensure that justice is done,” the statement reads.

Ahmo’s mother Darlene said her heart aches for her son.

“I am going to miss his big smile when he would come in and visit,” she said as part of the written statement.

She said her son had good in him and loved his son and didn’t deserve to die.

His son Emory said in the statement that Ahmo was a “protector” for his family and that he wanted his family to find peace and happiness.

“I will miss my dad greatly, I only hope and pray that Canada and the Law will deliver justice to those who are responsible for his passing,” he said.

CTV News will update this story when more details are available.

– With files from CTV’s Danton Unger.

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