Police investigating death of inmate in St. John's penitentiary as homicide

In this file photo, a Royal Newfoundland Constabulary crest is shown.

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. -- The death last month of an inmate following a reported altercation with officers at a provincial jail in St. John's, N.L., has been ruled a homicide.

Jonathan Henoche, 33, died Nov. 6 at Her Majesty's Penitentiary while awaiting trial on charges including first-degree murder in relation to the 2016 death of 88-year-old Anna Regula Schule in Labrador.

The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary did not name Henoche in a statement Wednesday but said the province's chief medical examiner had concluded the Nov. 6 death of a 33-year-old male at the penitentiary was a homicide.

The RNC said the matter is being investigated by its major crime unit and it will not be commenting further at this time.

Henoche's lawyer, Bob Buckingham, had called for a public inquiry after the death, saying his client had been denied the right to a fair trial.

Jerry Earle, president of the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Public and Private Employees, said at the time that correctional officers were involved in an altercation with Henoche before he died.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 4, 2019.