REGINA — A doctor says the injuries of a woman who died after falling 10 storeys through a Regina hotel's laundry chute suggest she probably went down feet first, though he admits there's a possibility she went backwards and head first.
Noah Evanchuk, lawyer for the family of Nadine Machiskinic, said during questioning of Dr. Shaun Ladham on Tuesday that implies someone put her in the laundry slide.
Machiskinic was found at the bottom of the chute at the Regina Delta Hotel in January 2015 and died in hospital.
Ladham concluded Machiskinic suffered "significant trauma that was not survivable," including impact to her head that left it partially separated from the neck.
The 29-year-old also had multiple contusions, internally and externally, to her head and trunk area.
The cause of death was deemed undetermined in Ladham's initial report, which he described as a "working document." At the time, the pathologist raised red flags about the level of drugs and alcohol in the woman's system.
Reading the toxicology report, he concluded Machiskinic was "unlikely to get into the chute herself."
But he admitted he changed the report to rule the death accidental following a conversation with Saskatchewan's chief coroner Kent Stewart.
The coroner had reportedly learned from the Regina Police Service investigation that Machiskinic was functioning normally at the Delta Hotel the moments before she died.
With that information, and a report from a toxicologist in Alberta specializing in people with a tolerance to drugs and alcohol, Ladham said he felt it was necessary to amend his initial report.
Evanchuk said he's concerned about that.
"I do find it odd that there's been this level of tinkering," he said outside the inquest Tuesday.
He hoped one of the recommendations to come out of this inquest will be that all future working reports be amended in separate documents, rather than in place of any initial rulings.
"We must have some accounting for drafts of formal documents, especially when dealing with the death of an individual," Evanchuk said.
"It must not be something that can be revised in a Word Perfect document, but in fact a new document created out of precedence. We do this when we file updated briefs of law, you can file an updated affidavit or motion, and I think that is maybe something we are dealing with here."
Machiskinic's family has questioned how she fit through the chute door, which was 53 centimetres wide, and why it took 60 hours for police to start an investigation.
The inquest heard Monday that there was only one guest on the 10th floor on the night Machiskinic died and none of her DNA was found in that room.
CJME, The Canadian Press