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Coroner’s inquest called in fatal shooting of Yahk man

A coroner’s inquest will begin late next month into the death of a Yahk man shot and killed by Castlegar RCMP more than eight years ago.

The inquest into the death of Waylon Jesse Edey, 39, will begin Aug. 28 at the Nelson courthouse.

Edey died Jan. 29, 2015 after being shot on the Kinnaird bridge. Cst. Jason Tait was charged with manslaughter but found not guilty in November 2020 following an eight-week trial. Court heard Tait opened fire when Edey drove towards him. Tait tried to block Edey’s path with his vehicle and then stepped out of the car.

The BC Coroners Service didn’t explain why the inquest was called now, however inquests are normally delayed until other legal processes conclude. in December 2016, Edey’s mother sued Tait, the provincial government, and the federal attorney general on behalf of her grandchildren. However, the file has not been active since January 2019. Lawyer Jesse Gelber, who acted for the Edey family, said it has been left in abeyance.

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Coroner’s inquests are mandatory in deaths that occur when a person is detained by police or in their custody. A jury is asked to determine how someone died and recommend ways to prevent similar deaths. However, they don’t make any findings of legal responsibility.

The expected length of the inquest wasn’t stated, but they rarely last more than a week. Kim Ibister will be the presiding coroner.

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