Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple and more than 30 jail employees are at the center of a federal lawsuit alleging guards tortured young inmates from New York City.
The 101 page lawsuit stems from a New York City Board of Correction decision to ban inmates at Rikers Island younger than 22 from being placed in solitary confinement.
The lawsuit alleges in order to get around the ban, inmates were shipped up to a ‘black site’ at the Albany County jail.
That’s where lawyers allege inmates were unreasonably caged, beaten and sexually abused.
The lawsuit details the story of four young men from the city, two as young as 19 years old. It claims one day the inmates were put in the back of a van with no idea where they were going and hours later they arrived in Albany, far from their family and their lawyers.
The lawsuit said guards would deliver unusual and confusing commands and when they got it wrong, the guards would punch, kick and taze the inmates.
The lawsuit also alleges the guards would insert their batons in the young men’s rectums, and that the inmates would spend weeks, months or years in isolation.
All of the above allegations happened while the men were awaiting trial and had not been found guilty.