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Press Conference/Rally against Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department Brutality

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2013-02-14 21:03:59 -

/ New York, NY - February 13, 2013 -- On February 16, 2013 at Noon, Roosevelt Island Residents will Hold a Rally to Demand a Federal Investigation by the U.S. Attorneys’ Office and Legislative Changes, Specifically Passage of Assembly Bill A00956, After a Pattern of Escalating and Widespread Constitutional Rights Violations

WHERE: Good Shepherd Church – 543 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, NY

WHO: Speakers to include Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Public Safety Committee Members, victims of these abuses, the attorney representing

those victims, and elected officials.

The pattern on Roosevelt Island of constitutional rights violations and abuses culminated in the near-death beating of Anthony Jones on January 13, 2013. Mr. Jones was lawfully visiting a friend at his apartment building, when he was rushed by Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department (RIPSD) officers, brutalized, arrested and handcuffed to a hospital bed where he lay for days with broken ribs, bleeding lungs, and lacerations. Mr. Jones was not prosecuted by the District Attorney’s office for any crimes and all charges were dropped. THIS WAS NOT AN ISOLATED INCIDENT. The use of excessive force, targeting of the youth of Roosevelt Island, violence, and constitutional violations are rampant within RIPSD and nothing is being done to stop it. Citizens cannot rely on the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation (RIPSD’s employer) for accountability or for change.

The Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department and their actions demonstrate a lack of training, regulation and accountability. Uniquely, the RIPSD officers are not accountable to any watch-dog organizations like the CCRB or internal investigation departments like the IAB. Accordingly, there is no real accountability for their actions. Without any safeguards, many of these officers have run amok. Their actions are indicative of tactics designed to terrorize a peaceful and law-abiding community into fear and submission. Come stand with the victims and citizens of Roosevelt Island as they declare that enough is enough!

In response to the outrageous behavior of the Roosevelt Island Safety Department and their continued abuse of Roosevelt Island citizens, the RIRA Public Safety Committee, chaired by Erin Feely-Nahem, along with Frank Farance (committee member and former RIRA President), attorney Michael S. Lamonsoff, and others are holding a rally against the peace officers brutality and abuses of power. The rally will highlight their demands which include a federal investigation into the ongoing constitutional violations on the Island, immediate passage of “The Kellner Bill” (A00956) which seeks to create a state-wide CCRB to bring accountability to these peace officers, and for the immediate removal from active duty and discipline of RIPSD Director Keith Guerra, Deputy Director Rene Bryan, Lieutenant Yee, and Special Peace Officer Ralph Torrens.

The rally gets under way at Noon at the Good Shepherd Church on 543 Main Street, directly across the street from the Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department. In the event of inclement weather, the rally will be held inside the Church.

Join this rally to stand with Anthony Jones, other victims of RIPSD brutality, and the residents of Roosevelt Island who have had enough and are demanding change!
SPONSORED BY: Roosevelt Island Residents Association and its Public Safety Committee.


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