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New York City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit over Death of Kalief Browder

HeadlineJan 25, 2019

New York City has agreed to pay $3.3 million to settle a lawsuit brought by the family of Kalief Browder, a Bronx resident who died by suicide in 2015 at the age of 22 after being held in the Rikers Island jail for nearly three years without trial for a crime he did not commit. Kalief was just 16 years old in 2010 when he was sent to Rikers Island jail on suspicion of stealing a backpack. He always maintained his innocence and demanded a trial. Instead, he spent nearly three years at Rikers—nearly 800 days of that time in solitary confinement. When not in solitary, Kalief was repeatedly assaulted by guards and other prisoners. Kalief’s story led New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio to pledge in 2017 to close the Rikers Island jail—in 10 years’ time.

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