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You are here News Of Special Interest U.S. Inquiry Finds a ‘Culture of Violence’ Against Teenage Inmates at Rikers

U.S. Inquiry Finds a ‘Culture of Violence’ Against Teenage Inmates at Rikers

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Riker's island abuse of teensIn an extraordinary rebuke of the New York City Department of Correction, the federal government said on Monday the department had systematically violated the civil rights of male teenagers at Rikers Island by failing to protect them from the rampant use of unnecessary and excessive force by correction officers.

The office of Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan, released its findings in a graphic 79-page report that described a “deep-seated culture of violence” against youthful inmates at Rikers, perpetrated by guards who operated with little fear of punishment.

The report, addressed to Mayor Bill de Blasio and two other senior city officials, singled out for blame a “powerful code of silence” among jail staff, along with a virtually useless system for investigating attacks by guards. The result was a “staggering” number of injuries among youthful inmates, the report said.

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