Kalief Browder, Teen Held at Rikers for 3 Years Without a Trial, Found Dead

In this July 31, 2014 file photo, Rikers Island juvenile detention facility inmates walk single file to the jail's chapel for a visit from Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons and entertainer L.L. Cool J. The city’s juvenile jails are extremely violent and unsafe, the result of a deeply ingrained culture of violence in which guards routinely violate constitutional rights of teenage inmates and subject them to “rampant use of unnecessary and excessive force,” federal prosecutors said in a scathing report released Monday, Aug. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson, File)
Rikers Island Correctional Facility (Seth Wenig/AP)
Rikers Island Correctional Facility (Seth Wenig/AP)


NEW YORK (New York Magazine) — Kalief Browder, the 22-year-old Bronx resident who was incarcerated as a teenager for years at Rikers without being convicted of a crime, was found dead by suicide in his mother’s home this weekend.

Browder was the subject of a 2014 New Yorker story that chronicled the violence and mistreatment he endured at Rikers — including two years in solitary confinement — after being accused of stealing a backpack at age 16. Browder maintained that he never stole anything, but he was still held for three years without a trial and subjected to brutal beatings by both guards and other inmates, some of which were captured in surveillance footage later published by The New Yorker.



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