Dying Young in Prison

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Alicia Barazza, whose son killed himself in an adult prison, testifies in favor of raising New York's age of criminal responsibility at a legislative hearing in Albany last month. Photo by Karen Savage/JJIE

Alicia Barraza started her testimony with statistics.

Sixteen- and 17-year-olds who serve time in New York’s adult facilities are twice as likely to report being beaten by staff, she said matter-of-factly. Looking straight ahead at a panel of New York state senators, she explained that juveniles in adult facilities are 50 percent more likely to be attacked with a weapon, are most at risk of sexual assault, and are 36 percent more likely to commit . . .

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