Surrey Pretrial in Newton. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)

Coroner’s inquest into Surrey Pretrial death to begin Nov. 12

John Michael Murphy, 25, died on Aug. 3, 2016 after a fight with his cellmate

A coroner’s inquest into the 2016 death of John Michael Murphy at Surrey Pretrial Services Centre is set to begin on Nov. 12 at Coroners’ Court in Burnaby.

Murphy, 25, died on Aug. 3, 2016, after a fight with his cellmate during which Murphy was held in a chokehold for longer than 10 minutes. John Cole Burt, 22, pleaded guilty to manslaughter and in 2018 was sentenced to five and a half years in prison.

READ ALSO: Charge now laid in Surrey jail killing

READ ALSO: Inquest scheduled into inmate’s death at Surrey Pretrial Centre

The inquest will start at 9:30 a.m., on the 20th floor of 4720 Kingsway in Metrotower II, with coroner Larry Marzinzik presiding.

After he and a jury hears evidence from witnesses concerning Murphy’s death the jury will have the opportunity to make recommendations toward preventing similar deaths from happening.

Andy Watson, manager of strategic communications for the BC Coroner’s Service, noted that a coroner’s inquest is not designed to assign blame but rather the Coroners Act “permits the chief coroners to hold an inquest if the public has an interest in being informed of the circumstances surrounding a death, or if the death resulted from a dangerous practice or circumstance.”



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

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