According to a press release from the victim’s attorney, Thomas Hamm, a visitor to the Rikers Island facility, was beaten by two corrections officers hurling anti-gay slurs. Earlier this year, the Jail’s Action Committee released a report maintaining that conditions for visitors to Rikers “continue to be discouraging at best and traumatizing and violent at worst.”
When prosecutors and judges are turned into vote-seekers, efforts to develop more humane approaches to punishment and law enforcement suffer, the veteran TV journalist said in an interview aired on CUNY’s “Criminal Justice Matters” program Tuesday. He charged that the Trump administration’s “tough on crime” rhetoric has made things worse.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo says, “The situation is intolerable.” Inmates argue that shutting down the 10-jail complex is the only solution for violence by guards and gang members, mistreatment of the mentally ill and juveniles, and unjustly long detention for minor offenders.
What can reduce the violence that has plagued New York’s jails—especially at the vast Rikers Island facility? Recent proposals from New York City’s Department of Correction include recommendations for more stringent monitoring of visitors and packages: Visitors will receive background checks to weed out felons and those who might try to smuggle in weapons and other contraband; and all parcels would have to be sent to the jails through a third-party vendor, such as Amazon, in order to decrease the […]