A group of inmates at Rikers Island helped corrections officers prevent the rape of a female corrections officer after she found herself locked inside of a vestibule with a 290-pound inmate.
The inmate, 27-year-old Raleek Young, allegedly pulled down his pants and began to masturbate while he choked the female officer during the sexually charged attack. He then dragged her to an adjacent bathroom where he prevented her from opening the security door.
A source who viewed surveillance footage of the incident indicated that the majority of the attack had been caught on video, according to the NY Daily News who broke the story.
Young, who is currently serving five-to-ten for raping a 13-year-old girl back in 2007, was not initially charged with anything out of the ordinary as the attack was labelled a routine “use of force” of the jail’s administration. This labeling infuriating the facility’s staff who demanded that the attack be classified as a sexual assault.
Corrections officers at Rikers refused to work on Sunday in a show of defiance against the administration’s labeling of the attack, however, the Correction Officers Benevolent Association’s president, Norman Seabrook, arrived at the jail and persuaded members of the union to return to work with his promise that he would undertake their cause.
Seabrook said that while officers find themselves “assaulted every day,” accountability is a necessity.
There must be accountability […] Officers are assaulted every day, and [the Bronx DA] has the audacity to say, ‘Not today, bring him back at another time.’ I will not tolerate it. I will not stand for it. […] I appreciate [the inmates] helping a sister officer because that could been their mother, wife or sister
The union leader noted that 90 percent of inmates “are there to do their time and go home.”
Young was arraigned in Bronx Criminal Court facing a slew of new charges which include attempted rape, forcible touching, assault, harassment and sexual abuse. The criminal complaint alleges that he ripped off the officer’s sweater and proceeded to place “his lips on her mouth and about her face.”
The attack took place on Saturday night around 8:15 p.m. as the convicted rapist gained entry into the watch post area by insisting that he needed to acquire a mattress from another unit.
The matter is currently under investigation, according to Correction Department spokeswoman Eve Kessler who spoke on the matter.
Inmates who came to the officer’s rescue assisted other correction officers in the process of tearing Plexiglass off of the outside of the watch post, creating a gap through which a skinny inmate managed to slip through. Once in, the skinny inmate opened the security door and the team of helpful inmates took down the assailant and held him until other officers arrived.
The female officer was treated at a hospital following the assault.
What do you think of this team of incarcerated criminals who came to the rescue of a female officer to prevent her rape, are they heroes in this instance?