Layleen Polanco wiki
Polanco, 27, died in solitary confinement on June 7 last year after an epileptic seizure, according to a coroner’s report.
Last week, the New York City Department of Investigation, charged with overseeing city employees and contractors, and the Bronx District Attorney’s Office concluded that staff members at the Rikers Rose M. Singer Center Island were not criminally responsible for Polanco’s death. That same report found that staff members at the women’s facility left Polanco alone for 47 minutes or so at the time of her death, a violation of the correction policy requiring controls of prisoners in solitary confinement every 15 minutes. Prison employees say they thought Polanco was asleep in the hours before her cell was finally opened and found to be unresponsive.
Layleen Polanco footage obtained
Shanies said the images, obtained by his firm as evidence in the ongoing lawsuit against New York City and released to NBC News, add key details that the Bronx district attorney and the Investigative Department did not take into account when they found that the officers were not responsible.
About Layleen Polanco Death
Polanco’s death has sparked a protest by LGBTQ activists, who they say is an example of the dehumanization facing transgender women behind bars, and of people advocating for bail reform. Polanco was arrested last April on misdemeanor assault charges and held on $ 500 bail dating back to a 2017 prostitution charge. Records indicate that Polanco was placed in punitive prison for assaulting an officer in Rikers.
Layleen Polanco investigation report
Diane Struzzi, director of communications for the Research Department, told NBC News in an email that an investigation found that her laughter had nothing to do with Polanco.
“Evidence from the investigation conducted by the DOI and the Bronx District Attorney’s Office found that those who were monitoring Ms. Polanco consistently indicated that they thought she was sleeping,” Struzzi said, adding that detainees have the right to nap.
A witness, whose name is redacted from the DOI report, noted that Polanco often slept after taking her medication. Struzzi did not say whether employees were able to confirm signs of life when they repeatedly called Polanco’s cell between 1:26 and 2:50 p.m., when she was found unanswered in her cell.
Shanies is unconvinced.
“You could see on the video that multiple officers are staring into Layleen’s cell knocking, waiting, calling other people over to look,” he said. “At certain points, people spend five to 10 minutes just staring through the window, into the cell. It’s not something that you do for somebody who you think is asleep.”