3 years in Rikers Island, 2 in solitary confinement, this high school student, NEVER CHARGED, gets released
16-year-old high school sophomore Kalief Browder, of the Bronx, spent nearly three years locked up at the Rikers Jail after he says he was falsely accused of stealing a backpack. Amazingly, Browder never pleaded guilty, actually refused to plead guilty and requested a trial, even when pressured, but was never convicted and was only offered plea deals while the trial was repeatedly delayed.
Near the end of his time in jail, the judge “offered” to sentence him to time served if a guilty plea was entered, and warned him he could face 15 years in prison if convicted, but Browder still refused to accept the deal. The only reason Browder was finally released was because his case was dismissed, but the damage had been done.
Browder, a high school student, spent an unbelievable 800 days, or over 2 years, in solitary confinement, which is a common juvenile imprisonment practice that the New York Department of Corrections has now banned after several investigations.
How does a teen end up in jail for 3 years, of which 2 years was spent in solitary confinement, and never be charged with a crime?
Browder’s case highlights several broken mechanisms in the New York legal system that feeds itself to civil liberty abuses on our youth.
- The 6th amendment gives us a right to a speedy trial, but in New York they have a “Ready Rule”. The “Ready Rule” allows the courts to postpone trial dates by offering continuances. The system may give a continuance for 1 week, but logistically it may be 1 month before the trial actually comes to fruition and the still not convicted civilian only gets “credit” for the 1 week, not the actual time they have served. In Browder’s case, he was given an absolutely ridiculous number of continuances initiated by the prosecution which left him locked up because he could not afford the $3000 bail.
- Browder was a high school student and juveniles are supposed to continue their education while behind bars .. except for juveniles that are in solitary confinement. Guards would place juveniles in solitary and the schooling would stop relinquishing any educational support.
- While in solitary, Browder says that guards would routinely refuse to give him his meals. Hunger is a common complaint by teens that are locked up because of the 12-hour stretch between dinner and breakfast. Guards would use starve tactics at their discretion for punishment or their own personal enjoyment. Browder says the worst of his starvations lasted for 4 meals in a row, meaning he was denied breakfast, lunch, dinner and another breakfast.
- As it stands, the courts place people in these situations and it is human nature for some to strike a plea deal just to get out of jail. But Browder did not play into their game and take a plea deal, but maintained his innocence and requested a trial which came at a snail’s pace. This leads one to believe that the courts use this a planned tactic or procedure to play on human nature all in the name of getting convictions.
- The issues of using a Public Defender have long been recorded across the country. In New York, court appointed lawyers make $75 a case. In order to make money, that PD has to take on huge caseloads which leads to other problems. Browder, although locked up for nearly three years in Rikers, where his PD was located everyday, never once was visited by his PD or had anyone to advocate his case for him. This shows a reckless disregard which leads to a vicious cycle of apathy that often leads innocent people to copping pleas or getting longer sentences.
He was charged, but never convicted. Per the newyorker:
Not trying to imply that in any way makes this better. It’s horrifying from top to bottom.
tHIS IS THE YEAR WOMEN FINALLY SAID “FUCK YOU” TO SEXISM
YOU GO , GIRL.
'not that you're the genius'
questioning her intelligence when he has that hair cut in 2014
BAAAAAAAM, for fuck’s sake!!
LET ME TELL YOU SOMETHING ABOUT MAYIM BIALIK.
FOR YEARS AS A KID AND TEEN, SHE BALANCED SCHOOL AND ACTING, NEVER ONCE LETTING HER GRADES DROP OR HER CAREER SUFFER.
SHE GRADUATED HIGH SCHOOL AT THE TOP OF HER CLASS, AND WAS ACCEPTED TO HARVARD AND YALE BUT CHOSE TO GO TO UCLA BECAUSE SHE WANTED TO STAY CLOSE TO HER FAMILY.
SHE EARNED A BACHELORS IN NEUROSCIENCE, HEBREW STUDIES, AND JEWISH STUDIES ALL AT THE SAME TIME.
SHE THEN WENT ON TO GET HER DOCTORATE AND A Ph.D. IN NEUROSCIENCE, WHILE BALANCING AN ACTING CAREER AND MOTHERHOOD.
SHE HAS BEEN THE BUTT OF SO MANY FASHION JOKES AND ANTI-SEMETIC JOKES IN HOLLYWOOD. WHEN PEOPLE SAW HER AS AMY, THEY RIDICULED HER ONLINE.
BUT SHE STUCK WITH IT. BECAUSE SHE IS A BEAUTIFUL AND AMAZING PERSON AND IS HAVING NONE OF THIS “WOMEN CAN’T BE SUCCESSFUL AND SMART BULLSHIT.
SHE IS ALSO A NOW-SINGLE MOM OF TWO BOYS. AND STILL KEEPS HER CAREERS (YES THAT’S FUCKING PLURAL) ACTIVE.
BUT YET, PEOPLE STILL HAVE THE AUDACITY TO ASK HER STUPID FUCKING SEXIST QUESTIONS THAT THEY WOULD NEVER GIVE, SAY, JIM PARSONS OR JOHNNY GALECKI.
MAYIM BIALIK IS A FUCKING ICON.
Also has he ever watched the show? Because Amy is actually one of the “geniuses”
100,000 notes and I wonder how many people realise this line was improvised by a 7 year old
By now I hope at least some of you have heard of Javier Payne, a 14-year-old black boy from the Bronx who was attacked by the NYPD last weekend as he was walking home from a hookah shop in his neighborhood.
Cops said he was fighting with another boy, a 13-year-old neighbor in the area.
So what do you do when two boys are fighting?
Well, if you’re the NYPD, and the boys in question are black, you throw one of them through a window, puncturing his lung. As he lies there with blood filling his lungs, you handcuff him and refuse to call an ambulance. When you do call an ambulance, you enter the protocol for an adult drunk, instead of a dying child. When the ambulance comes, you refuse to let the paramedics uncuff him. Even as the paramedics explain that this boy is dying, you argue that he’s faking it and that he deserves to die there on the street for fighting with another boy. When you finally do let the paramedics uncuff him and take him to the hospital, you fail to report that you threw him through a glass window despite dozens of eye-witnesses reporting the opposite. When you are called upon by the community to account for your actions, you decide to do an “internal investigation” - therefore being accountable to no one outside your division. You encourage the deregulation of police conduct and refuse to let outsiders investigate how you train your officers.
And what do you do, if you’re a concerned citizen who is tired of seeing this? You write Bill de Blasio and you ask him to start an outside investigation into police brutality. Or at least that’s what I did. And if you want to cosign what I wrote him, you can do that here. And if you want to signal boost that for Javier Payne, you can do that too. You can sign my petition letter here.
Feeling down? here have some bouncy goats
kids these days
you did not