Norman Seabrook, center, president of the New York City Correction Officers' Benevolent Association, was convicted of corruption in federal court Wednesday. AP File Photo by Mary Altaffer

Once Mighty Boss of Rikers’ Officer Union Convicted of Corruption

A former union boss who was once regarded as the king of New York City’s jails may be headed to federal prison after a jury convicted him of corruption charges Wednesday.

The Manhattan jury returned its verdict against Norman Seabrook months after another jury deadlocked on the charges against the former head of the union representing guards at Rikers Island.

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The Queens House of Detention sits vacant but will factor into the city's plan to close Rikers // nyc.gov

Queens House of Detention Set to Re-Open As Rikers Closes

The vacant Queens House of Detention is one step closer to re-opening as a key component of the city’s plan to shutter Rikers Island.

On Wednesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the four proposed borough-based sites to replace Rikers. The Queens jail will be located at 126-02 82nd Avenue, the site of the vacant House of Detention, which closed as a cost-cutting measure in 2002.
On Wednesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the four proposed borough-based sites to replace Rikers.

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A bail bonds Office in NYC. AP Photo by Kathy Willens

$1 Bail Fail Initiated Latest Reforms

A stunning bail system failure helped initiate a slate of jail reform bills signed into law Tuesday — though they came a few years too late for one Rikers detainee.

The new laws, introduced by District 24 Council Member Rory Lancman, will require bail bond agents to be more transparent when it comes to seeking compensation and filing complaints and will force each bail bondsman to display a consumer bill of rights inside their shops.

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Rikers Island, site of an upcoming voter registration drive for detained New Yorkers. AP Photo by Seth Wenig.

Free Phone Calls, Voter Registration Drive Come to Rikers

Perhaps the Rikers detainees will use their free phone calls to contact their elected officials.

New York will soon become the first major city in the U.S. to offer free phone calls from jails.

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District 24 Council Member Rory Lancman // Photo Courtesy of Rory Lancman

LANCMAN: Supervised Release Is Answer For ‘Fairer and Sensible’ Justice System

New York City’s bail system is costly, inefficient and unjust. Everyday, thousands of people languish on Rikers Island, who have not been found guilty of any crime, solely because they cannot afford to pay bail. In essence, these individuals are stuck in jail, not because they are too dangerous to release, but because they cannot afford to buy their freedom.

Until a few years ago, there was no solution to combat this crisis. Today, however, the answer is supervised release.

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The Queens House of Detention sits vacant but will factor into the city's plan to close Rikers // nyc.gov

Queens Jail Turned TV Set Has Role in Rikers Closure

Over the past 16 years, it seems that everyone in Queens has proposed a new use for the vacant Queens House of Detention near the Criminal Courthouse in Kew Gardens.

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