Mayor de Blasio announces plans for smaller jails to replace Rikers

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio is announcing plans for new jails to replace Rikers, but the state says the city is doing such a horrible job with it they may take it over and close it themselves.

During a press conference in Brooklyn, the heated debate over violence inside city jails continued.

"Why in the hell are you hell bent on opening new jails when you can't keep this jail safe?" said Elias Husamudeen, COBA President. "In any other business, any other corporation, he would be fired."

The union president representing the city's correction officers laid into Mayor de Blasio for his 2016 decision to end punitive segregation for inmates under 21.

Had it still been in place, he and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams said Saturday's beat down of a correction officer at Rikers by known gang members may not have happened.

"And so now they carry out this assault, they go to court, they get bumped up in leverage in their street gang, and then they go back to the facility and get their iPad and their $25 stipend," Adams said. "This is a joke and a mockery of the law enforcement system and it cannot be tolerated."

But Mayor de Blasio says reinstating the controversial program isn't the answer.

Studies showed solitary confinement harms mental health and makes bad behavior worse.

Wednesday morning, de Blasio said he's moving forward with his version of reform, announcing plans for new smaller jails.

Under the mayor and city council plan, Rikers Island would be replaced by four municipal jails:

- Manhattan Detention Center, 125 White Street, Manhattan, 10013
- Brooklyn Detention Center, 275 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, 11201
- Queens Detention Center, 126-01 82nd Avenue, Kew Gardens, 11415
- NYPD Tow Pound, 320 Concord Avenue, Bronx, 10454

A brand new report from the governor's office shows Rikers is one of the five worst jails in the state.

The report blasts the city's management, citing an uptick in violent incidents and calling the 10-year plan to close the jail system, "Wholly unacceptable and repugnant."
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