A corrections officer at a federal jail facility in Lower Manhattan has been brought up on assault charges after the revelation that he sexually abused at least four prisoners under his care between 2012 and 2018. While most inmate assault cases in New York City arise after physically violent confrontations, sexual assault is no less serious and can have lifelong after effects for the victims. In some cases, these serious civil rights violations have resulted in substantial settlements for the victims.
Investigators are looking into a potential case of inmate abuse in New York City. Corrections officers in charge of overseeing a ward at Rikers Island prison facility in New York City failed to respond in time to save an inmate's life late last month. 43-year-old David McPeck was found "unresponsive" in his cell at Rikers at around 8:21 in the morning on August 29th. He would eventually be declared dead. And while inmate deaths inside Rikers Island are not unheard of, this particular incident has safety advocates questioning the facility's staff and their commitment to the wellbeing of inmates under their care.
A Department of Health and Mental Hygiene investigation into the Rikers Island jail complex has uncovered dozens of cases of alleged prisoner assault in New York. An exhaustive investigation into prison records, current and former inmate interviews, and medical records from the jail and surrounding hospitals found that 129 inmates reportedly suffered "serious" injuries at the hands of corrections officers and other lockup staff.
A controversial new report shows that the increase in correction officer related inmate assaults in New York City (specifically at the Riker's Island prison) is directly correlated to the two-fold increase of injury claims filed by inmates against the Department of Corrections. The comptroller's office's data positively linked the 114% increase in violence over the last five years to the increase of inmates with mental health issues and the use (or misuse) of solitary confinement and questionable tactics many call abuse.
The Second Circuit Court of Appeals has reinstated a civil rights suit brought by female prisoners against New York prison guards for alleged rapes and improper touching.
A recent rec-area prison assault left an inmate dead in upstate New York. The 36-year-old victim suffered multiple blows to his head from another inmate or inmates. He was rushed to a nearby hospital, but ultimately died from his injuries. The inmate's death is still under investigation but at least one man has been tagged as a suspect.
Rikers Island received much recent attention while it held Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a man who some believe will be the next president of France. Now that Strauss-Kahn is out on bail for his sexual assault charges, the media circus has left Rikers. However, the media should be focusing its attention on the egregious conduct of some of the State prisons' corrections officers.