Pacific Institution in Abbotsford

Pacific Institution in Abbotsford

Coroner’s inquest concludes into death of gangster in Abbotsford prison

Jury makes four recommendations into 2015 death of Gurwinder Mann

A jury at a coroner’s inquest into the death of a man in prison for a gang-related killing has made four recommendations.

The inquest ran Feb. 19 to 22 in Burnaby and was related to the death of Gurwinder (Gogi) Singh Mann, who suffered an injury in 2013 while in custody at the Donnaconna Institute near Quebec City and was transferred the following year to Pacific Institution in Abbotsford.

Mann was under the care of the medical unit there until his death on Dec. 26, 2015 at the age of 39.

The inquest reviewed the circumstances of how Mann died, with the jury making recommendations to prevent future similar deaths.

According to the verdict posted online, Mann’s cause of death was an anoxic brain injury, meaning he did not die from a blow to the head.

The death is listed as accidental, but no further details are provided.

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Common causes of anoxic brain injury, according to online medical reports, include a stroke, a drug overdose, a sudden blow to the windpipe or being choked unconscious.

The jury made three recommendations to the chief of health services at Pacific Institution:

– Review the policies and procedures around establishing interdisciplinary health team meetings maintained on a regular schedule.

– Review ways to create a practical, easy-to-use charting system for all disciplines.

– Regularly review, audit and implement procedures to ensure ongoing training of staff.

An additional recommendation was made jointly to the chief of health services and the warden at Pacific Institution: Consider developing procedures regarding co-ordination between corrections staff and health care professionals.

Mann began serving a life sentence in May 2003 for the gang-related killing of Gurpreet Sohi, 20, who was gunned down in his Delta basement in 2000.

Also serving a life sentence for Sohi’s murder is Ravinder (Robbie) Soomel, 39, who was convicted at the same time as Mann in 2003.

In 2010, Soomel was sentenced in relation to another earlier killing – that of 18-year-old Jason Herle, who was gunned down by two men hiding in the bushes as he was leaving his parents’ King Road home in Abbotsford with his girlfriend in November 1997.

Soomel and co-accused Tajinder Bains each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit murder in that case.