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Saturday, December 10, 2022

Judge orders NYC prison chief to appear at status conference

NEW YORK ( Associated Press) – A federal judge ordered the chief of New York City’s prisons to appear at an upcoming status conference on the conditions at the troubled Rikers Island prison complex, prosecutors said, saying the situation had become so dire that it was necessary to establish There may be court monitoring on the troubled system to institute necessary reforms.

US District Judge Laura Taylor Swain directed City Corrections Commissioner Luis Molina to attend Tuesday’s session.

She issued the order after receiving a letter from US Attorney Damian Williams’ office earlier in the week.

In the letter, prosecutors said “prisons are in a state of crisis, inmates and staff are seriously injured, and action is now desperately needed,” and questioned whether the city and the Department of Corrections had the “capacity, expertise to And have the will “to rapidly make the changes necessary to bring about the right improvements.”

death of sixteen prisoners Three have died so far in Rikers last year, and in 2022.

Prosecutors suggested that more aggressive steps could be taken, including establishing an independent authority to implement the reforms.

In his order handed down on Thursday, the judge noted the “seriousness and urgency of the security situation” and the “consequential need for clarity as to the planned changes and implementation.”

In a statement, New York City Mayor Eric Adams said Molina is “laying the groundwork for long-term change.”

“Fixing recurses is critically important, a moral imperative, and we need to fix it. But to do that, we need the opportunity to implement our plan,” he said. “These are generational challenges. , which are deeply intertwined, and no administration can resolve them in less than four months. We look forward to continuing our close collaboration with the Federal Monitor and all other stakeholders.”

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