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Warden at Ashley Smith inquest denies giving guards no-entry cell order

The warden of the prison where Ashley Smith choked to death denies ordering guards to refrain from entering the teen’s cell as long as she was still breathing.

Cindy Berry says she has no idea where such instructions came from, even though several witnesses at the inquest into Smith’s death say they came from her.

Under cross-examination, Berry frequently claims not to remember events.

She says she can’t remember guards challenging her on the cell-entry instructions.

As one lawyer put it, her mantra is that it was up to them to use their discretion, experience and training.

Smith, 19, choked herself to death in her segregation cell at Ontario’s Grand Valley Institution in October 2007 as guards videotaped but did not intervene.