Sex offender killed in B.C. prison riot

A convicted pedophile and child pornographer serving an indefinite sentence as a dangerous offender was killed in a prison riot Saturday night at Mountain Institution, a federal male medium security facility 120 kilometres east of Vancouver.

Michael Gibbon, 39, was killed during a riot that broke out around 9:45 p.m. in the gymnasium, Dave Lefebvre, a spokesman for Correctional Service of Canada, said today in an interview.

Mr. Gibbon, who had spent his entire life in Chilliwack before his incarceration for sex crimes, had been convicted in 1992 for sexual interference of a young child and sentenced to three months in jail. Five years later, he was convicted of sexual assault, production of child pornography and possession of child pornography for the purpose of distribution, bestiality.

Mr. Gibbon was declared a dangerous offender in 1998 but the decision was set aside in 2003. He was declared a dangerous offender for a second time in 2005 after failing to convince a B.C. Supreme Court judge that he could control his strong sex drive if he was allowed to participate in a trial program of anti-libidinal medication.

Mr. LeFebvre said that the disturbance began with inmates breaking windows and threatening staff members. They subsequently started assaulting each other.

Mr. Gibbon, who has been in custody since February, 1997, was attacked and pronounced dead at the institution. A second inmate who was not identified was sent to a hospital outside the prison compound.

Mr. Lefebvre said the reason for the disturbance or for Mr. Gibbon’s death was not yet known. Three investigations have begun: the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team, a joint police force in Metro Vancouver, has been called in and has begun to look into the circumstances related to the death.

The Correctional Service and the Coroner’s Office will also investigate the incident. “At this point it is way too early to speculate what started this,” Mr. Lefebvre said.

No correctional officers were involved in the death of inmate, he also said.

Extensive damage was caused to several buildings in the institution which was to remain locked down to facilitate the clean up and a search, he added.

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