Jewish-Indigenous inmate with B.C. ties alleges prison guard ‘brutality’ in lawsuit

Correctional Service Canada refused to comment on the case

Timothy Nome is seen in a photo taken at a Quebec prison in May, 2011. Nome, a Jewish-Indigenous inmate, is suing prison authorities for alleged brutality by guards that he says has cost him income and left him with permanent injuries. (THE CANADIAN PRESS)

A Jewish-Indigenous inmate is suing prison authorities for alleged brutality by guards that he says has cost him income and left him with permanent injuries.

In his unproven statement of claim, Timothy (Mitch) Nome, 44, who is serving an indeterminate sentence for punching a guard in 2005, makes several allegations against correctional officers he says warrant compensation of more than $1.4 million — half in punitive damages.

READ MORE: Guards protest firing of fellow officers charged with assault at B.C. prison

Lawyer Max Silverman said the lawsuit is also an effort to shine a light on the “darkness behind the walls” of Canada’s prison system.

“Before I started working on this case, I never would have suspected such profound cruelty in Canadian prisons,” Silverman said from Montreal.

Nome is now incarcerated at Stony Mountain Institution in Manitoba — where he was moved in March 2017 after he said guards in British Columbia had deliberately housed him with known white supremacists.

However, the claim filed on Thursday with Superior Court in Montreal, relates to the 15 months Nome spent from December 2009 to March 2012 in the special handling unit of the Quebec Regional Reception Centre in Sainte-Anne-des-Plaines.

“Plaintiff experienced particularly brutal and violent treatment in the course of his incarceration at the special handling unit,” the claim alleges. “As a result of the incidents alleged herewithin, plaintiff began a cycle of hatred, paranoia and psychological distress that not only caused him suffering, but prolonged his correctional plan and his incarceration.”

Video exists for some of the eight incidents he alleges. In some cases, the federal prison ombudsman found fault with the guards. Among the incidents:

— Two guards broke his wrist and dislocated his shoulder;

— A guard pulled Nome’s pants down and tried to penetrate him by hand;

— A guard threatened to kill Nome’s rabbi, leading to an altercation that left the prisoner pepper-sprayed and with a broken finger;

— Two guards forced him against a wall, beat him, then vandalized his skull cap;

— Guards assaulted him while he was handcuffed, while one emptied a canister of gas in his face. He lost two teeth and his nose was badly broken;

“Plaintiff suffered severe damage to his nose, which has yet to receive proper care as of the time of filing of this application,” the claim alleges. ”Plaintiff’s fingers have been damaged and redamaged to the point that they no longer have the same function they once did.”

Correctional Service Canada refused comment on Nome’s litigation because it is before the courts. It also did not say whether any correctional officers had faced disciplinary proceedings as a result of their interactions with him.

“Our employees are expected to act according to the highest legal and ethical standards, and are subject to the rules of professional conduct and code of discipline,” a CSC spokeswoman said in an emailed statement. “We do not tolerate any breach of our policies and incidents of employee misconduct are investigated.”

Colin Perkel, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

CN train derailment cleared between Terrace and Prince Rupert

The CN mainline is now open, following a train derailment mid-way between… Continue reading

Kitimat’s BC Hydro substation receives a massive upgrade

It will cost $82 million to ensure that LNG Canada has enough… Continue reading

Comment requested for Kitimat LNG’s expansion plans

Company says radical redesign means additional export is possible

Haisla Nation Council appoints Stewart, Renwick

Two recently elected Haisla Nation councillors, Kevin Stewart and Arthur Renwick, have… Continue reading

Relief in sight from open burn pollution

New regulations should cut down on air pollution

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

BC Wildfire Service warns wet weather no reason to be complacent

Fire risk currently low for much of B.C. compared to same time over last two years.

Bank of Canada lowers qualifying rate used in mortgage stress tests

Home sales softened last year after the federal government introduced new stress test rules for uninsured mortgages

B.C. man pleads guilty in snake venom death of toddler

Plea comes more than five years after the incident in North Vancouver

Trudeau says Ottawa open to proposals for B.C. refinery as gas prices soar

Prime minister says he knows B.C. residents are struggling and the federal government is open to ideas

Clock’s ticking to share how you feel about Daylight Saving Time in B.C.

Provincial public survey ends at 4 p.m. on Friday

Most Read