Overcrowding and understaffing not to blame for prison staff charges: Cops

A high fence lines the outside of the Elgin-Middlesex Detention Centre in London, Ont., on July 25,...

A high fence lines the outside of the Elgin-Middlesex Detention Centre in London, Ont., on July 25, 2012. (CRAIG GLOVER/QMI Agency Files)

Randy Richmond and Jennifer O’Brien, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 4:05 PM ET

LONDON, Ont. — Police say overcrowding and staffing levels at Elgin-Middlesex Detention Centre aren’t to blame for charges against three staffers accused of failing to provide the necessities of life in the beating death of an inmate.

“Our investigation determined that on the night Mr. Kargus was murdered, staffing and the number of inmates in custody were not issues of concern,” Det. Insp. Kevin Heslop said in a statement Thursday.

“If the guards weren’t able to do their job, then we wouldn’t have laid the charges.”

Police announced Wednesday that corrections officers Leslie Lonsbary, 47, and Gregory Langford, 55, and operational manager Stephen Jurkus, 52, are charged with failing to provide the necessities of life in the beating death of inmate Adam Kargus, 29, of Sarnia, Ont., on Oct. 31. His body was dragged into the showers the next day.


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