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Rikers Island

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New Death Rocks Rikers Island as De Blasio Targets Correction Officers’ Union With Huge Fines

Isaabdul Karim became the 11th detainee to die this year at Rikers, which has been roiled by inhumane conditions as staff outages reach 1,800 a day. The city is suing to make the union pay $1 million for every day of massive absences.

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Justice Delayed: City Jail Staff Shortage Keeps Detainees From Getting to Court

"It’s a tremendous problem and it’s getting worse," one public defender said. Meanwhile, advocates derided Mayor de Blasio’s emergency plan to stem Rikers Island chaos as too little, too late — and called for a mass release of low-level offenders.

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Rikers Island Guard’s Desertion of Post Led to Detainee’s Death, Family Alleges

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Self-Harm Is Exploding In New York City Jails, Internal Numbers Show

Self-harm — including suicides — at Rikers Island and other local lockups spiked last summer as COVID-19 ravaged New York, figures obtained by WNYC/Gothamist and THE CITY show. The rate’s climbed to historic levels in the months since.

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Rikers Staffing Crisis Limits Access to Medical Care

With thousands of officers not coming into work, incarcerated people aren’t getting escorted to their medical appointments, a New York Focus investigation finds.

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Rikers Detainee Endured ‘Horrible Conditions’ Before Dying in Cell, Jails Overseer Finds

Missing blankets and sheets. No pillows. Limited food and exercise. That’s what a new father jailed on a parole violation stemming from a shoplifting arrest faced before becoming the first of three men to die at Rikers since April.

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Tablets for Inmates: New NYC Jails Chief Presents Reform Plan Ahead of Next Mayor

Correction Commissioner Vincent Schiraldi’s "comprehensive post-pandemic recovery" proposal also covers everything from cutting down on triple shifts for correction officers to fixing broken cell doors.

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Hundreds of New City Jail Officers for Rikers Put Detainee Advocates on Guard

Rikers Island and other city lockups employ five officers for every three incarcerated people. As some call for a reduction in officers, the City Council okays a budget plan that boosts the ranks by 400.

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Tears and Joy as Rikers Island Resumes In-Person Visits

The Department of Correction stopped visitation last spring at the beginning of the pandemic. Now family and friends of detainees are returning under a new system.

Bronx Woman Mourns Son Who Died at Rikers as Cellmate Says Help was Slow to Come

Jose Mejia Martinez became the third person jailed on a parole violation to die at the city jail since April. Another detainee told THE CITY a jail officer didn’t immediately get medical help for the ailing man, remembered by his mother as "very caring."

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Another Man Died at Rikers as Lawmakers Voted on Parole Bill that Might Have Saved Him

Jose Mejia Martinez succumbed after an arrest for stealing beer triggered a parole violation. It marked the third such death at Rikers Island since April. The bill passed Thursday would help parolees avoid returning to jail.

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Solitary Confinement Reforms Approved for City Jails, Even as Advocates Decry ‘Broken Promise’

The city further limited isolation Tuesday — two years and a day after Layleen Polanco’s death on Rikers Island. But her sister and other inmate advocates are slamming de Blasio for not fully eliminating the practice.

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Death of Two Men at Rikers — One Held on Shoplifting Rap — Amplifies Push to Overhaul Parole Rules

The deaths of Thomas Braunson and Richard Blake come as lawmakers rush to pass the "Less is More" reform package that would restrict re-jailings on minor charges. But the clock is ticking with the Legislature set to break for summer next week.

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New City Jails Boss Open to Next Mayor Extending His Sentence

Incarceration reformer Vincent Schiraldi, appointed by de Blasio to run the troubled Correction Department, says he’d consider staying past Dec. 31. He wants to end the violence that’s plagued Rikers Island and other local lockups.

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City Jails Roiled by ‘Disorder and Chaos,’ Feds Say as Correction Boss Quits

Use of force against inmates at Rikers Island and other local lockups hits five-year high, according to the federal monitor appointed to oversee the troubled system as part of a 2015 class-action lawsuit settlement.

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No New Jails? Next Mayor Could Scrap de Blasio’s Close-Rikers Plan

On the campaign trail, those vying for City Hall are hedging their bets on the lockup blueprint to build four new jails. Justice reform advocates pushing for the $8.2 billion project worry the next mayor won’t keep it on track.

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Rikers Staff Sick Call Spike Spurs Lockdown, Trapping Mentally Ill in Cells

Some 1,200 correction officers called out sick Sunday — more than twice the pre-pandemic average. Union officials and inmate advocates alike fear more lockdowns are on tap for the system’s most vulnerable inmates.

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NYC Jail Officers Lash Out at Inmates With Few Consequences, Discipline Records Show

Following New York’s repeal of 50-a law barring release of uniformed officer personnel records, Department of Correction files show 11 officers were disciplined for at least three confirmed misconduct incidents over an 18-month period.

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NYC Jail-Related COVID Fatalities at Least Double Official Three Who Died in Custody

THE CITY and Columbia Journalism School identified six men who died after contracting coronavirus while in Department of Correction facilities. In an eerie echo of New York nursing homes, the department did not count deaths following release.

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How the City Failed Three Men Who Died of COVID-19 in Jail: Watchdog

Scathing report from the city’s jails oversight board finds the men — all with medical conditions — were packed into dormitories without masks. One tried, in vain, to protect himself with sheets and pillow cases.