RIP Kalief Browder: New Law Passed In His Honor
June marks the one year anniversary of the untimely death of Kalief Browder. Last year he had succumb to the demons of his ongoing depression relating from trauma he experienced while on Riker’s Island.
My first time learning about him was on an episode of The View where I heard him tell his story. He became a social justice activist after he spent over 3 years in Riker’s Island awaiting a trial for being accused of stealing a backpack because his family couldn’t afford his $3000 bail.
The charge was later dismissed but the damage was already done. During that time in prison Kalief was mistreated where he was starved by guards as well subject to physical abuse by guards and inmates alike all of which was well documented on surveillance obtained by media outlets.
Kalief’s death will not go down in vain. New York has banned the practice of putting teenagers ages 16 and 17 in solitary confinement. Kalief’ spent over 2 years in solitary, an experience proven by multiple studies that help lead to suicidal thoughts. A law was also added in his honor this week to aid with ensuring a person accused of a crime receives a speedy trial (something I swore our Constitution already promised with the 6th Amendment but okay).
Let’s hope this “New Law” does something…. Thoughts?