Feds Charge Rikers Island Correction Officer With Letting Inmate Die [Photo]
The feds have arrested a city correction officer on a charge that he deliberately ignored the urgent medical needs of a Rikers Island inmate who had ingested a ball of cleaning powder and who ultimately died in his cell.
Terrance Pendergrass, 49, a former correction captain, was collared Monday morning and is scheduled to appear before a judge Monday afternoon in Manhattan Federal Court. The bust comes a year after the Bronx district attorney’s office announced it would not pursue criminal charges in the 2012 incident involving robbery suspect Jason Echevarria.
Pendergrass allegedly refused to call a doctor to help Echevarria, 25, who was housed in a unit for inmates with mental health issues and who had swallowed the “soap ball” he had been provided with to clean up a sewage backup in his cell.
Two different correction officers told Pendergrass on August 18, 2012 that Echevarria had swallowed the soap and that he had requested attention, prosecutors allege. The inmate may have eaten the soap in hopes of getting out of solitary confinement.
Pendergrass told the first officer that he wanted to be called on only if the officer needed help with the extraction of an inmate from a cell or if there was a dead body, according to a complaint unsealed Monday.
When that officer later reported seeing vomit in Echevarria’s cell, Pendergrass allegedly replied that the inmate should “hold it.”
Wow!! Our sincerest condolences goes out to the loved ones of this victim.
Source: NY Daily News