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Inquest scheduled for man who died in Penticton RCMP cells

A public inquest will be held into the death of Steven Joseph Scott who died in Penticton RCMP cells last summer.

Scott was arrested on Aug. 9, 2012 as a result of a disturbance call and a refusal to leave a Penticton residence. He was remanded by a justice of the peace and was found dead in his cell the following morning.

The death of the 30-year-old man, of no fixed address, was subject to an external investigation by three Saanich police detectives and a forensic technician. They scoured all of Scott's movements and interactions from the time he was arrested until his death.

The Coroners Act makes an inquest mandatory in almost all cases in which a person dies while in police custody. Presiding coroner Larry Marzinzik and a jury will hear evidence from subpoenaed witnesses to determine the facts surrounding Scott's death. According to the coroner's office, while the jury may not, by law, make any findings of legal responsibility, it will have the opportunity to make recommendations aimed at preventing deaths under similar circumstances in the future.

The inquest will take place from Feb. 17 to 21, 2014 at the Penticton courthouse.

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