Shuford v. City of New York, 09 Civ. 0945 (PKC) (S.D.N.Y.)

Nature of Claims: Excessive force by staff and failure to protect against other prisoners. The complaint, filed in February 3, 2009, alleges that in March 2007, the 17-year-old plaintiff Tyreek Shuford was assaulted and severely injured by gang members two weeks earlier, in the presence of staff members who did not intervene. After he was beaten, the officers in the housing area refused to take him to the clinic. Two days later, a captain saw his injured face and escorted him to the clinic, and subsequent x-rays revealed that he had at least one, and possibly three, fractured facial bones. He was then confined for protective reasons in the “close custody” unit at the adolescent jail on Rikers Island, where he was confined to a cell 23 hours per day. There, he had a brief argument with an officer, who made a crude insulting remark about Shuford’s mother, a correction officer who had formerly worked in that jail, and Shuford responded with an insult. The officer had Shuford’s cell opened, ordered him into the dayroom, and when they were out of range of surveillance cameras, and punched him repeatedly in the face. He sustained additional facial fractures. The case was settled in July 2009 for $375,000.

Current status: Settled.

Reported decisions: None.