Judge dismisses charges against jail guards in death of N.S. inmate

A judge has dismissed charges against two correctional officers in the death of a Nova Scotia inmate who was pepper-sprayed inside New Brunswick's Dorchester Penitentiary.

The guards, 48-year-old Alvida Ross and 31-year-old Mathieu Bourgoin, had faced manslaughter and criminal negligence charges in the 2015 death of Matthew Hines of Cape Breton.

But provincial court Judge Ronald LeBlanc decided Friday the two men would not stand trial after a preliminary hearing.

Ross's lawyer, Michel DesNeiges, said the judge found the guards' use of pepper spray was reasonable.

The 33-year-old inmate was serving a five-year sentence for crimes including robbery when he died on May 26, 2015.

The RCMP originally said foul play was not suspected in the death, but Canada's correctional investigator, Ivan Zinger, found prison staff used unnecessary force and failed to properly respond to a medical emergency.