A group of killers, thieves and rapists is suing the federal government for neglecting their feelings of “hopelessness” and inability to connect emotionally with other people while behind bars.
Five inmates at the Saskatchewan Penitentiary are suing the federal government, seeking $50,000 in damages, saying they’ve been inflicted with “nervous shock” because of a negligent justice system.
Among them is Harvey Andres, a motorcycle gang member convicted of rape and murder, who has tried multiple times to break out of prison.
Andres is believed to be the same man who in 2001 was convicted and handed his second life sentence for the 1982 sex slaying of 17-year-old Calgary girl Shirley Ann Johnston, who was raped and locked in a closet in her mother’s home before it was set ablaze.
Johnston at one time faced 21 additional sexual assault charges revolving around five women and one man — brought to light at the Johnston trial — though the Crown dropped them all in 2005, saying Andres was unlikely to ever get out of prison.
He was already serving a life sentence in Edmonton for the 1976 sex slaying of a B.C. woman in 1982 prior to the savage crimes in Calgary, when he escaped a maximum-security institution.
Andres is eligible to apply for parole in 2024, at the age of 76.
In a statement of claim, the thugs say they suffer sleep deprivation, have to “self-deaden in order to cope,” can’t “enjoy mutuality, connectivity and meaning making,” fear for their futures, are “overwhelmed with hopelessness and erosion of self worth,” and feel “incessant subtle anger over being unable to make fundamental and critical life choices.”