Lawsuit alleges vicious gang assaults against prisoners were committed by Sing Sing correctional officers
A lawsuit alleges vicious gang assaults against prisoners were committed by correctional officers at Sing Sing Prison in Ossining.
The 245-page lawsuit alleges correction officers "executed gang assaults on dozens of prisoners" at the correctional facility beginning Nov. 7.
Prisoners were allegedly forced "to strip down to their underwear" and "were beaten mercilessly with hands, feet, and/or weapons."
It resulted in injuries that hospitalized at least seven prisoners.
"Not only were these assaults carried out by special teams of correction officers, but the events were overseen by high-ranking prison officials," says attorney Danielle Muscatell.
Muscatello is one of the attorneys who filed the claim against New York state on Jan. 31 after speaking with a client in the prison she was already representing.
"He described men in black tactical gear," says Muscatello. "Who just came in, directed him to strip down to his underwear, to slippers, to face the wall...Then suddenly, he hears his cell gate open, and he immediately begins getting struck in the head, the back."
Muscatello says the accounts were echoed by more than two dozen prisoners.
The lawsuit is seeking punitive damages and reform.
"One thing we are seeking at minimum is cameras. There are no cameras in the facility, and none of these officers were wearing body cams... which would really have probably prevented this," Muscatello says.
The state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision said in a statement it does not comment "on internal or external investigations to ensure the integrity of those investigations."
News 12 also reached out to the U.S. Attorney's Office and the union representing state corrections officers but did not hear back.