Skip to main content

The Globe and Mail

‘No alternative’ to isolating Ashley Smith, parole officer tells inquest

Ashley Smith is shown in an undated handout photo released at the inquest into her prison cell death in Toronto.


A parole officer testified Tuesday that he believed there was no alternative to segregation for Ashley Smith.

Rob Harris told the inquest into Smith's death in prison that she was a danger to herself or others.

As a result, Harris said his recommendations to the warden of Nova Institution were to keep the teenager isolated.

Story continues below advertisement

Smith was admitted directly into segregation when she arrived at the adult facility in October, 2006.

She had already spent almost her entire three years in youth custody in isolation.

A year later, when she was 19, Smith choked herself to death in a segregation cell at another prison in Kitchener, Ont.

Report an error

The Globe invites you to share your views. Please stay on topic and be respectful to everyone. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

We’ve made some technical updates to our commenting software. If you are experiencing any issues posting comments, simply log out and log back in.

Discussion loading… ✨

Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Thank you!

You are now subscribed to the newsletter at

You can unsubscribe from this newsletter or Globe promotions at any time by clicking the link at the bottom of the newsletter, or by emailing us at