Scrutinizing Assaults on Rikers Island

We apologize for the delay folks. We haven't updated the blog in a while due to holidays, and just general life getting in the way. But now we are back and we hired a new associate!

Today on the docket we are discussing the new article in the Wall Street Journal about Rikers Island.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/rikers-island-violence-scrutinized-1479257896

In it, they talk about what the DOC (department of corrections) is doing about particularly aggressive inmates. Should they be segregated at an increased expense to taxpayers and an increased cost to the mental health of the segregated inmate? Or be housed with general population and punished should they act aggressively? I don't believe there truly is a good answer to these questions. I do believe that Rikers should not be a mental health facility and it seems to be heading in the direction (if it isn't one already). But unsure if that would make a difference as you are dealing with a general demographic with propensity towards violence (that is, the jail demographic).

If you throw them in segregation, it costs the city more and then advocates complain about its affect on mental health potentially causing more aggression down the road. If you leave them with general population then the City gets sued when they attack someone for failure to protect - a constitutional claim.

What would you do?


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