A man brutally beaten earlier this month while in the Calgary Remand Centre has died.
Alvin Chiniquay, 40, was on suicide watch when sources say he was attacked by a fellow inmate Sept. 9.
Calgary police said Thursday an autopsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death.
It’s believed Chiniquay was arrested for shoplifting just days before the attack.
Sources told Global News he was in a cell with a known violent criminal when the unprovoked attack happened.
Watch below: Family of victim fears a Calgary remand inmate beating was a hate crime. Nancy Hixt reports.
His family was too shaken to speak, asking Chiniquay’s long-time lawyer to comment on their behalf.
Chiniquay’s family said he has had a rough life. His mother died when he was just ten years old. From that moment on, his life was never the same. He struggled with addictions and got into a vicious cycle of petty crime to support his habits.
But his family told Global News he was not violent and can’t comprehend why he was attacked.
“The fact of the matter was: he was in government care. He was supposed to be under an ongoing watch because he was suicidal and this is what has happened to him during that time,” his long-time defence lawyer Joan Blumer said.
Chiniquay was openly gay. His family said they can’t help but wonder if this was a hate crime.
“They have wondered if it’s because of his lifestyle,” Blumer said. “If there was any consideration for that before he was assaulted or why he was being assaulted or that was any kind of motivation, then certainly that’s another factor that I would say increases the severity of the consequences for whoever it is that perpetrated this.”
Watch below: A Calgary inmate’s lawyer is demanding accountability after a brutal beating at the remand centre. Nancy Hixt reports.
Global News has learned the suspect in the case has a history of violence.
Sources have identified Marlon Ledesma as the inmate who was in the cell with Chiniquay when the beating happened, and suggest he will likely face a murder charge. Details of the charges will be released once Ledesma sees a Justice of the Peace.
Alberta Justice and Solicitor General sent a statement to Global News Thursday, saying in part:
“A board of inquiry has been assigned to investigate the circumstances surrounding the assault to determine if anything could be done differently to prevent a similar situation from occurring and to ensure policies and procedures were followed.”