You are reading

Rikers Inmate Tests Positive for COVID-19; City to Release 40 Vulnerable Inmates

Stock Photo Unsplash

March 20, 2020 By Allie Griffin

New York City will release 40 inmates on Rikers Island who are vulnerable of complications associated with the novel coronavirus, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Thursday.

The individuals have been chosen based on specific health vulnerabilities and their low-risk status, as non-threatening and unlikely to reoffend.

The NYPD and the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice are reviewing more potential cases for release, which must be signed off on by the relevant district attorney and/or the state of New York, de Blasio said.

The City also confirmed its first case of an inmate on Rikers Island who tested positive for COVID-19.

The inmate is in his early 30s and is doing okay, health-wise, de Blasio said. He is currently in isolation at the facility’s communicable disease unit.

Eight fellow inmates who shared a housing unit with the man have exhibited symptoms of COVID-19 and are also in isolation in the communicable disease unit.

On Wednesday, the Chief Physician of Rikers Island Ross MacDonald warned that “a storm is coming,” should coronavirus reach the island’s sprawling prison system.

He asked that the City let out as many inmates as possible.

“A storm is coming and I know what I’ll be doing when it claims my first patient. What will you be doing? What will you have done? We have told you who is at risk,” MacDonald wrote on Twitter. “Please let as many out as you possibly can.”

Meanwhile, Tiffany Caban, who was narrowly defeated by Melinda Katz in last year’s Democratic primary to be Queens District Attorney, called on the Mayor to release more prisoners given the crisis.

email the author: [email protected]
No comments yet

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

BP launches new advisory panel for youth to become civically engaged in the future of Queens

In an effort to get more young people involved in civics, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has created a new advisory panel known as the Youth and Young Adult Council to introduce the “youngest and fiercest” community advocates to both community service and organization.

Members of the advisory body will advocate concerns through means of community engagement by participating in one of two cohorts. The first will be made up of high school representatives between the ages of 13 and 17, while the second cohort will be comprised of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25.

These Queens eateries are participating in the upcoming NYC Restaurant Week

NYC Restaurant Week is underway, so nix that skillet and bring family and friends to your favorite neighborhood spot, or get inspired and break bread somewhere new and different. During this special citywide culinary event, food-lovers will enjoy curated menus and prix-fixe prices that are easy on the wallet.

Bookings began on Jan. 17 and are available until Feb. 12, and you can reserve a table at 30 participating Queens restaurants, along with hundreds more across the five boroughs.

Lunar New Year ‘special celebration’ held at Queensborough Community College in Bayside

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz joined Councilwomen Sandra Ung and Linda Lee on Wednesday, Jan. 18, for a special celebration in honor of the Lunar New Year at the Student Union Building at Queensborough Community College in Bayside.

Ung escaped the Cambodian genocide as a child, and her family emigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old. Now she represents Flushing with its enormous Asian American population. She said she is proud to see how many Lunar New Year celebrations she sees around the city compared to when she first arrived in Queens.