Family of man who died after prison assault seek parliamentary inquiry

The family of a man who died after he was assaulted in his jail cell are seeking a parliamentary inquiry into what happened.
Bradley King was attacked by his Manawat Prison cell-mate on February 11 and died of his injuries in Wellington Hospital a fortnight later.

His family are seeking a select committee inquiry into the death and have launched a petition on the parliamentary situs for this to happen.

King, a 36-year-old first-time offender from Palmerston North, was in custody on burglary charges. He planned to plead guilty to three.


READ MORE:
* Police homicide investigation continues into Manawat Prison death
* Corrections completes review into fatal assault on inmate
* Family of man who died after prison cell attack set sights on court action

DAVID UNWIN/STUFF
Bradley King's family is vowing to fight for justice after he was assaulted in his prison cell, later dying of his injuries.

Eight days after being kept in custody when he appeared in court he was assaulted in his sleep.

How can such a horrific assault happen to anyone in custody? Legislation and Department of Corrections policy must change so no family goes through such a horrific ordeal ever again, the petition says.

Spokesman for the King family, Scott Guthrie, said a select committee inquiry was the next best thing to a royal commission.

Parliament has the power to go digging and ask major questions of the Corrections chief executive, the commissioner, everybody.

They can pull anybody they want in so then they will get the true answers. And out of that the family wants legislative and policy changes within Corrections so, hopefully, this never happens again to any other family.

If accepted, the matter would be heard by the Justice Select Committee, where politicians from across the political spectrum sat.

It also gives the family the opportunity to put submissions in and also present verbal submissions to the select committee, which is really powerful, hearing from those people.

A man has been charged with wounding King with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and is due to appear in the Dannevirke District Court in April. Meanwhile, a police homicide investigation continues.

Corrections has finished its operational review into the incident. It has said it would share its findings with the family soon, but won't yet release them publicly.

Kings family are planning to hand over their petition in Wellington next week, where there will speak with with Opposition politicians.

Were going to meet the family and hear their concerns, said National justice spokesman Simeon Brown.

From our perspective we are wanting to ensure their concerns are addressed.

Brown said prisons were becoming more dangerous and there needed to be accountability for that.

Kings family are considering their options, including possible future legal action against Corrections, and have launched a Givealittle appeal.

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