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A spate of stabbings and beatings erupts on Rikers Island

It’s a bloodbath on Rikers Island.

In 2021, the complex saw a total of 419 stabbings and stabbings of inmates and correctional officers — a 1,097 percent increase from 2011 — according to figures released earlier this week during a public corrections officer meeting. At the same time, the number of occupants fell by more than half from 12,419 to 5,563.

Data shows this year will be even bloodier.

By the end of April, 191 stab wounds had been recorded, according to Julio Medina, a member of the Board of Corrections. That equates to a pace of 575 for the year, a 37 percent increase from 2021.

Some of these vicious attacks include a Bloods gang member who was slashed in the face with a large kitchen knife in early April, and a correctional officer who almost lost his eye and ended up with eight stitches while breaking up a fight in March.

Experts say the bloody attack is the result of violent criminals, who make up the majority of inmates at Rikers these days, as bail reform has kept low-level criminals out.

Correctional officers cut and stabbed by inmates.
A correctional officer is seen after being slashed in the face at Rikers.

“There is no doubt that those now incarcerated are proportionately a more concentrated group of serious and dangerous offenders,” former DOC Commissioner Martin Horn told The Post. “The less serious offenders today are less likely to go to prison.”

Benny Boscio Jr., president of the Corrections Officers’ Benevolent Association, attributed the alarming rise in stab and stab injuries to the prison’s long-running staff crisis.

“We ran the numbers from January to April and we’ve already lost 400 officers to resignations and retirements. During the same period, only 75 recruits graduated from the academy,” he said. “We need corpses to keep everyone safe in our prisons.”

Guns confiscated from law enforcement officers
One inmate made a Plexiglas knife with handles made from torn fabric.

Rikers has recently become notorious for overcrowded cells, absent officers and deteriorating infrastructure, including broken Plexiglas, metal bed frames and heating coils.

Images provided by a corrections source show pieces of plexiglass carved into a blunt but deadly knife by an inmate, with handles made of torn fabric and pages of newspaper. Another picture shows a police officer with a blade sticking out of her hand after intervening in a gang fight.

Boscio accused the de Blasio government and his DOC commissioners of mistreating Rikers and restricting gun searches.

Photos of Rikers Island Correctional Officers being cut and stabbed by inmates.
Benny Boscio Jr., president of the Corrections Officers’ Benevolent Association, attributed the alarming rise in stab and stab injuries to the prison’s long-running staff crisis.

“It’s been eight years of neglect,” he said. “The previous government was so concerned about the use of force that they thought placing the same gang members in the same neighborhoods would stop prisoner-on-prisoner violence, but that was not the case. Now they were only fighting for power. It created armies.”

Current DOC Commissioner Louis Molina shared the same view.

“The ineffective decisions of previous leaders of this city and agency have crippled the department’s ability to operate effectively and have led to tragedy for officials and inmates alike,” he said.

Manhattan federal prosecutors recently threatened to request federal surveillance for Rikers Island unless the DOC stems the violence, corrects staffing issues and regulates living conditions.

https://nypost.com/2022/05/14/rikers-island-sees-surge-of-stabbings-and-slashings/ A spate of stabbings and beatings erupts on Rikers Island

JACLYN DIAZ

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