Rikers Island inmate killed self with razor after captain ignored protocol: source

A Rikers Island inmate who slashed himself with a razor and bled out — allegedly as correction officers looked on — was not handcuffed or completely searched in an obvious lapse in protocol, in response to a source within the embattled jail advanced.

Michael Nieves, 40, sliced his throat on the jail Aug. 25, after hiding a razor he was on condition that morning. He died Aug. 30 and is amongst 14 in-custody deaths on the Division of Correction this yr, the newest on Wednesday when a detainee hanged himself in a employees lavatory on the jail.

Nieves, who had been in custody since 2019 on expenses of housebreaking, arson and reckless endangerment, had been beforehand taken off suicide watch regardless of two failed makes an attempt to take his personal life, the source mentioned.

He was being held at Rikers’ Program to Speed up Scientific Effectiveness unit, which has an elevated degree of take care of the mentally in poor health.

When a correction officer requested Nieves to return the razor after a morning bathe, he claimed he left it within the bathe, in response to the insider.

When the officer couldn’t discover it, Nieves mentioned the person who showered after him might need taken it, the source mentioned.

Fourteen individuals have died in Division of Correction custody this yr.

A logbook considered by The Put up and crammed out by a correction officer notes at 10:30 a.m. that Nieves “refuses to return a razor. … Area captain was notified.”

However the captain didn’t instantly come to the unit, the source mentioned.

The captain didn’t make logbook entries till 11 a.m. in a single ebook and 11:14 a.m. in one other. And the captain didn’t instantly authorize Nieves to be handcuffed and brought for a physique scan to see if he was hiding the razor, the source mentioned.

As an alternative, she directed correction officers to go looking his cell and that of the opposite inmate. Nieves was additionally patted down.

Lower than an hour later, Nieves was discovered dying.

At 11:45 a.m. a correction officer famous Nieves had blood “leaking” out and a medical emergency was activated. The logbook says EMS didn’t arrive till 12:30 p.m.

There was additionally a delay in getting the in-house medical unit to reply, in response to the source.

The captain didn’t instantly return a name for remark.

Patrick Ferraiuolo, the president of the Correction Captains’ Affiliation, mentioned he didn’t know of a delay within the captain’s response and that she made the choice to go looking each cells first earlier than taking the inmates for scans.

“It would have been better to remove them right away. I’m not going to deny that,” he mentioned.

The dying is below investigation and the Division of Correction would solely say that three uniformed officers remained suspended.

If you’re struggling with suicidal ideas or are experiencing a psychological well being disaster and reside in New York Metropolis, you’ll be able to name 1-888-NYC-WELL free of charge and confidential disaster counseling. When you reside outdoors the 5 boroughs, you’ll be able to dial the 24/7 Nationwide Suicide Prevention hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or go to

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