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Calls for inquest into teen's death in custod -

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There has been an emotional protest outside Queensland's Parliament over the death in custody of
18-year-old Sheldon Currie, with the teenager's family claiming he was denied proper medical
treatment before his death.


TONY JONES, PRESENTER: There's been an emotional protest outside Queensland's State Parliament over
the death in custody of an 18-year-old Aboriginal man.

The Indigenous community claims he was denied proper medical treatment in prison.

But the Corrective Services Department disputes that and the Minister met the man's family today to
reassure them the death would be investigated.

Donna Field reports.

DONNA FIELD, REPORTER: Sheldon Currie's mother took her concerns to Parliament today.

Since his death in late February she's been privately grieving.

DONNA SMITH, VICTIM'S MOTHER: It was only petty things that he did, he never hurt anyone.

DONNA FIELD: The 18-year-old was on remand at the Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre for allegedly
stealing cars when he became ill.

REVEREND ALEX GATOR, PRISON CHAPLAIN: He was given Panadol. Other times he was repeatedly denied
medical assistance and told that there was nothing wrong with him.

DONNA FIELD: The death has sparked outrage in the Indigenous community.

NICOLE CLEVENS, PROTESTER (Shouting): What kind of value do you put on Aboriginal life? What kind
of value?

DONNA FIELD: Prison chaplain Alex Gator says she was called to the jail to calm other inmates after
Sheldon Currie was found unconscious on his cell floor.

REVEREND ALEX GATOR: The Murri boys nearly caused a riot when they yelled out to the officers to
get this young boy to the hospital - he's in a lot of pain, he's in agony.

DONNA FIELD: He was taken to hospital and his family says poor treatment continued there.

DONNA SMITH: I was sleeping on the floor in the hospital and then I was sent away from his bed the
night before I lost him.

DONNA FIELD: The man died here at the Princess Alexandra Hospital. At the time, the Corrective
Services Department released a statement saying there were no suspicious causes and the death would
be referred to the Coroner.

This afternoon, the family was given a private meeting with the Corrective Services Minister who
conveyed his sympathies.

NEIL ROBERTS, QUEENSLAND CORRECTIVE SERVICES MINISTER: Look, in the end - and I've made it clear to
the family - all of the issues, any claims, any concerns that they're raising, will be on the table
for investigation.

DONNA FIELD: The death will be investigated by the Coroner and the Chief Inspector of Prisons.

Donna Field, Lateline.