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On December 7, Mr. Schiere, on behalf of himself and the other two prisoners, wrote to the Correctional Investigator informing him of the denial of their grievance by the Commissioner of Corrections. In that letter, he ably summarized how the prisoners viewed their treatment.

The authorities claim to have had only two choices while awaiting the results of the police investigation: transfer me to an institution of higher security level or segregate me. Either proposal, raising my security or segregating me, amounts to the same thing -- an automatic presumption of guilt. It is true that, prior to the conclusion of any investigation, the authorities had two options open to them, to presume my innocence or guilt, and it is quite obvious that they decided on the latter of these two. Furthermore, to add insult to injury, the Commissioner of Penitentiaries now wishes to convince me that the Correctional Service of Canada acted in my best interests when deciding to presume guilt, raising my security status rather than segregating me. This is strictly nonsense. In my particular case it makes no difference whether I am locked up in segregation or sitting where I am now. The inference is the same, I am losing hard-earned time while never having had as much as a disciplinary charge over the last two and a half years. It is not my physical environment which is at stake in this case, the real issue is being accused of something I am not guilty of.

Thus far, the authorities, by the way of predetermining guilt, have only acted unfairly and have managed to cause irreparable damage and grief -- my name will forever be associated with this incident at Matsqui. Ask anyone, staff or inmate, and you will be told how Dick Schiere was transferred back to Kent for murdering Belliveau, a presumption which is now generally accepted as fact. Under these circumstances, being dealt with as unfairly as I have, I don't know if I can guarantee my own behaviour to remain rational. I might be better off locked up in segregation -- the worst harm I could do there is to hang myself. I am not exaggerating my feelings here, I am literally sick and tired of all the nonsensical excuses which have been offered to me over the past eight months. What does the Correctional Service of Canada expect of me, just to sit here while they run roughshod over me? Is it right that my guilt be presumed while being denied the right to defend myself? Is it right that I have been detained and punished while this so-called investigation remains incomplete, let alone without formal charges being laid?

The Correctional Investigator replied to the prisoners in the following terms:

Our inquiry into your transfer from Matsqui to Kent Institution has been completed. I should indicate to you that the Penitentiary Act authorizes the Commissioner or his delegated official to place an inmate in the institution which is considered most suitable to his needs and security level. As well, you should be aware that the authorities can act on suspicion, and the proving of guilt or innocence is not necessarily the determining factor in reaching a decision to transfer. Based on our review of the circumstances surrounding your transfer I have found nothing on which to base a recommendation for a further review by the Correctional Service and consequently I am unable to be of any further assistance on this matter.

Certain procedural discrepancies were noted in our review of the documentation and these have been referred to the attention of the Commissioner. As a consequence, further instructions have been issued to all regions to ensure the Correctional Service acts fairly in all transfer decisions. I realize this action will be of no benefit to you, but hopefully it will provide safeguards in the future. [The "procedural discrepancies" were the failure to give two days' prior notice of the transfer in April 1984, as required by the Commissioner's Directive on Transfer.]

The prisoners continued to press for a re-transfer to medium security. Mr. Schiere, after having been told by correctional staff at Kent that he had been cleared for transfer to Mission Medium Security Institution, was informed in August 1985 (eighteen months after the murder was committed) that as long as the investigation into Belliveau's death was ongoing, he could not be considered for transfer to lower security. Yet without further explanation, on September 10, Mr. Schiere was told by the assistant warden at Kent that his transfer to Mission would be activated, "even though the police investigation was not concluded." However, "should you be charged and found guilty of any offence in relation to the incident at Matsqui, you could be returned to maximum security."

On September 12, Mr. Schiere was transferred to Mission and placed in the Induction Unit, where he remained double-bunked for three weeks. The day after he left the Induction Unit and was given his own cell, he was transferred back to Kent. He was not given 48 hours' notice of the transfer as required by the Commissioner's Directives, and written notification of the transfer was served on him at the same time as the transfer was effected, replicating the initial "procedural discrepancy" that had happened at Matsqui. The notification contained the following reasons:

Your current involvement in an ongoing police investigation raises questions as to the appropriate level of security in which you should be held. Until your status as to this investigation is clarified to the satisfaction of warden of Mission Institution, you are being moved to Kent Institution on a temporary administrative basis for the good order of the institution.

Mr. Shiere was not informed of any new developments in the police investigation that could explain his transfer back to Kent. On his return, he was required to double-bunk in the Induction Unit. His visitors were required to reapply for visitors' status and, until they had completed this and gone through security clearance, they were not permitted to visit Mr. Schiere, even though they had been security-cleared by Kent only three weeks previously. On November 6, again without explanation, Mr. Schiere was re-transferred to Mission Institution. Mr. Angus and Mr. Pelletier remained imprisoned in Kent throughout.

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