Justice Department to probe federal jail

The Metropolitan Detention Center is shown on Jan. 8 2017 in the Brooklyn New York. On Feb. 2 2019 it was announced by the federal Bureau of Prisons that the power would be restored to the jail after inmates had to deal without heat or electrici

Another protest was being held Sunday at the federal jail in Brooklyn that has little to no heat and only partial light for inmates, and a local official confirms with WCBS 880 that pepper spray was used on some protesters. The prison was put on lockdown and the 1,600 inmates there were denied access to both family and attorneys.

Inmates at the facility had been living without power for the past week. "Where's the president on this?"

On Sunday night, power and some heat was finally restored to the jail, but attorneys and family members are still struggling to see clients and relatives. Several protesters came running out minutes later to cover their faces in water and milk.

Lawyers meeting with clients reported coughing fits from everyone in the meeting room. "Inmates who have medical conditions can't read the instructions on the medications", Patton said.

Velazquez disagreed. She said lawmakers measured the temperature as low as 49 degrees in some cells. The court papers say that jail officials have taken no steps to provide Sanchez with "an oxygen mask, clothing, blankets, or access to a habitable location that will mitigate his health risks".

Inmates at a Brooklyn jail were locked up without heat or hot water this weekend, sparking what attorneys call a "humanitarian crisis" in a lawsuit filed Monday. He said the warden told him 600 blankets from the city had been distributed.

Witnesses also said guards pushed them back and sprayed them with an unknown stinging substance.

Protesters had gathered outside the prison on Saturday, February 2, as well.

"Today's confrontation between the Bureau of Prisons and family members of people jailed at MDC highlights the desperate need to address the risky, inhumane and unlawful conditions inside the facility", NYCLU executive director Donna Lieberman said.

Southeastern tells commuters to avoid peak trains amid ice warning
Gatwick Airport also saw flurries, although the airport was advising passengers it was planning on operating as normal. British Airways also cancelled or merged a number of short-haul flights from Heathrow Airport in London.


"The people inside have a right to dignity and safety and we won't stand by while the Federal Bureau of Prisons fails them", the mayor said. "This has gone on for far too long".

Just as things were starting to get back to normal, a bomb threat Monday morning led to the evacuation of visitors and contractors, authorities said. "It is essential that BOP ensure that no detainee be subjected to retaliation for peacefully protesting this inhumane treatment".

A message was left with the U.S. Justice Department seeking comment.

"The electrical power at the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) facility at MDC Brooklyn was restored at approximately 6:30 pm this evening".

Inmates also reported smelling noxious fumes and seeing prison officers wearing masks even though none were supplied to inmates, the lawsuit said.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) claimed, in a statement emailed to the media Sunday, that "Cells have heat and hot water, there is lighting in the common areas and inmates are receiving hot meals".

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a brief statement that the conditions at the jail were unconstitutional and demanded an immediate fix.

According to union leaders, the heating issues were unrelated to the power outage, but occurred when the boilers that draw heat upward in the building froze amid the polar vortex that gripped much of the northern United States and plunged New York into single-digit temperatures, the New York Times reported.

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