Sweatman inquest set for June

An inquest into Sheilah Sweatman
An inquest into Sheilah Sweatman's death is set for June 4 to 7.
— image credit: Submitted

An inquest into the death of Ymir's Sheilah Sweatman has been scheduled for next June 4 to 7 at the Nelson courthouse.

Sweatman was part of a recovery operation on the Goat River near Creston with Nelson Search and Rescue's swift water unit when she died on June 29 of this year.

Presiding coroner Mark Coleman and a jury will hear evidence from subpoenaed witnesses to determine the facts surrounding the death, the BC Coroners Service said in a statement.

While the jury is not allowed to blame anyone, it will have the chance to make recommendations to prevent similar deaths.

Sweatman, 29, was called to the bridge on Highway 21 south of Creston where a vehicle was reported submerged in the river.

Police said in an attempt to attach a tow chain to the vehicle, Sweatman went overboard and did not surface.

Her colleagues recovered her body the next day, as well as the vehicle, a 1997 Pontiac Sunfire, which belonged to Lana Chipesia, 23, of Creston, who was recently reported missing.

Chipesia’s body was found further downstream following an aerial search.

Sweatman was originally from Manitoba. She graduated from the University of Manitoba before moving to West Kootenay, and worked part-time at Nelson Animal Hospital.

Her death was also under investigation by RCMP and WorkSafeBC.

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