News

Kill threat on Klum

Grafton jail.
Grafton jail.

A FELLOW inmate threatened to kill Ian Klum over his snoring the morning before he was injured, a coronial inquest into Mr Klum's death heard this week.

Mr Klum died of haemorrhaging in the brain in a Brisbane hospital four days after an alleged altercation in his Grafton jail cell at 2.30am on June 10, 2010.

ABC Mid North Coast reported Mr Klum's former cellmate Kevin Knight told the inquest on Wednesday that Mr Klum had repeatedly requested to be transferred to a cell with non-smokers.

Mr Knight said he heard one of Mr Klum's fellow inmates - whose identity has been suppressed - threaten to kill Mr Klum because of his snoring on the morning before the man was injured.

He said Mr Klum was not well-liked by other prisoners in a protected wing of the jail.

Mr Knight said on the night Mr Klum was injured, he heard banging and someone yelling, "Help!" from what he thought was Mr Klum's cell, the ABC reported.

Mr Knight told the inquest that the day before the altercation, he told prison staff he was concerned that Mr Klum should change cells.

The inquest heard earlier from Grafton Correctional Centre general manager Steve Harrison, who said some of the actions taken by senior night manager Richard Woelfl on the night of the incident were unprofessional, the ABC reported.

Mr Harrison said that after police became involved in the investigation, it was not his responsibility to ensure closed-circuit television footage of Mr Klum being treated and observed in a detox unit was downloaded for viewing unless he had been ordered to do so.

Nurse Merye White, the first medical professional to attend to Mr Klum, told the inquest that if she had been told he had been complaining of a headache, Mr Klum would have been sent to hospital.

She told the inquest she could not recall her conversation with Mr Woelfl and said she would have remembered being told the inmate could not walk and had a headache.

Mr Klum, who was 53 when he died, was in jail for traffic offences.

No charges have been laid in relation to his death.

Three of the prison officers on duty on the night of the incident remain suspended from duty.

The inquest has been adjourned until June 15.

Topics:  ian klum



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