Skip To Content
BuzzFeed News Home Reporting To You

Utilizamos cookies, próprios e de terceiros, que o reconhecem e identificam como um usuário único, para garantir a melhor experiência de navegação, personalizar conteúdo e anúncios, e melhorar o desempenho do nosso site e serviços. Esses Cookies nos permitem coletar alguns dados pessoais sobre você, como sua ID exclusiva atribuída ao seu dispositivo, endereço de IP, tipo de dispositivo e navegador, conteúdos visualizados ou outras ações realizadas usando nossos serviços, país e idioma selecionados, entre outros. Para saber mais sobre nossa política de cookies, acesse link.

Caso não concorde com o uso cookies dessa forma, você deverá ajustar as configurações de seu navegador ou deixar de acessar o nosso site e serviços. Ao continuar com a navegação em nosso site, você aceita o uso de cookies.

U.S. Sues New York City Over Excessive Violence At Rikers Island Jail

The lawsuit follows U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara's report that found the jails at Rikers Island are violent and unsafe for adolescent male inmates.

Posted on December 18, 2014, at 11:21 a.m. ET

Federal prosecutors sued New York City Thursday for alleged civil right violations and a "deep-seated culture of violence" affecting young inmates at Rikers Island jail.

AP Photo/Julie Jacobson, File

The lawsuit, which seeks court-enforced reforms to curb violence and hold officials accountable at the 10-jail facility, comes a day after Mayor Bill de Blasio visited the prison to announce the end of solitary confinement for 16 and 17-year-old inmates.

De Blasio's decision was one of 73 remedial measures recommended in an August report by the office of Preet Bharara, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York. Bharara's report was based on his office's two-and-a-half year investigation into Rikers Island jail which found rampant use of excessive force by corrections officers, failure to discipline such officers, and excessive use of solitary confinement.

Bharara had said that the investigation showed that "For adolescents, Rikers is a broken institution. It is a place where brute force is the first impulse rather than the last resort."

The federal complaint noted that between September and November alone there were 71 reported use-of-force incidents against 18-year-old inmates in facilities without surveillance cameras.

AP Photo/City of New York Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings

A 2012 photo shows Rikers Island inmate Robert Hinton in a medical clinic in New York, bloodied with a swollen face, shortly after a beating.

The complaint said that New York and its Department of Corrections have "engaged in a pattern and practice of violating the constitutional rights of male inmates—ages 16, 17, and 18" causing them "serious physical, psychological, and emotional harm."

The lawsuit also said that the city has been aware of the "extraordinarily high level of violence perpetuated" against the inmates but has failed to take meaningful action and address the organizational culture that tolerates unnecessary and excessive force.

In the filing, Bharara said "insufficient progress" was made with regard to reaching a speedy solution with the city on these issues.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.