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Inquest set for death of man in cells

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A public inquest has been scheduled for March 3 in Duncan on the April 22, 2012 death of Duncan's Jeremy David Richardson.

Richardson, 34 years old at the time, died at Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria after he had been transported there from the Duncan-North Cowichan RCMP cells where he went into medical distress the previous day.

"Presiding coroner Matthew Brown and a jury will hear evidence from subpoenaed witnesses to determine the facts surrounding this death," states a press release issued by the BC Coroners Service.

"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."

Oak Bay police were conducting an independent review of the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP detachment following the incident.

In an article published shortly after, the News Leader Pictorial reported the deceased had been picked up by local Mounties shortly after 11 a.m. on the Saturday.

The man was reportedly passed out in a public area of downtown  Duncan, and had declined assistance from paramedics shortly before police arrived.

The officers tracked the man down a short distance from where he'd  walked away from the paramedics, and he was arrested without incident for causing a disturbance.

"He was transported to the North Cowichan/Duncan detachment where he  was lodged in cells, slated for release once sober," said a statement released by Cpl. Darren Lagan at the time.

"The man was cooperative with police throughout his arrest and time in custody."

At 2 p.m. on Saturday, the on-duty guard found the man in medical distress.

Richardson was taken by B.C. Ambulance Service to Cowichan District Hospital, and then transferred to Victoria's Royal Jubilee Hospital.

He died shortly before noon on the Sunday.

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