31 Mar 2015

Prisoner dies after assault in jail

6:10 pm on 31 March 2015

The police are investigating a homicide at Christchurch Men's Prison after the death of an inmate this morning.

Benton Marni Parata

Benton Marni Parata Photo: Supplied / NZ Police

Police said Benton Marni Parata of Rangiora, who was assaulted last Wednesday, died this morning in hospital after his life support was turned off.

A spokesperson for his family said he was a "true free spirit" and a man with a huge heart who would give away his last dollar or the shirt of his back if someone needed help.

Detective Senior Sergeant Mark Worner said a scene examination at the prison was completed on Saturday morning and inquiries into the incident were continuing.

Mr Worner would not comment on the nature of the attack but said police were looking into it.

He said that they were focussing on the circumstances that led to the death.