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Justice Department Says Rikers Island Jailers Routinely Abused Teen Inmates

Posted on Aug 8, 2014


An extensive report by the Justice Department has found that New York’s primary jail is an absolute hell for underage inmates.

According to the Center for Investigative Reporting, which has also been critical of Rikers after a yearlong investigation, “The report says that correction officers routinely beat young inmates—often about the head—as retribution or punishment, and frequently attacked teenagers even when they were ‘completely subdued’ or ‘never resisting in the first place.’ The report found that between 2012-2013, jail staff used force against adolescents more than 1,000 times, resulting in 2,116 total injuries.”

In addition to physical abuse, Rikers personnel allegedly used solitary confinement “at an alarming rate,” and for nonviolent offenses. Teens found themselves in “the box” for months at a time.


—Posted by Peter Z. Scheer

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