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Rikers Island Detainee Shot

In March, 1999, Rikers Island, New York City, jail prisoner Petros Bedi, 27, was shot in the chest with a .25 caliber pistol by another prisoner. Bedi was awaiting trial on murder charges.

Jail guard Edward Quinn was suspended after the shooting for allowing Norman Seabrook, head of the Corrections Officers Benevolent Association (i.e., the jail guards' union), into the area where the shooting took place. Jail spokesman Tom Antenen said Quinn should not have allowed anyone into the area as it was an active crime scene.

The shooting occurred in the James Thomas Center on Rikers Island. During a search of the jail, guards recovered the pistol, with four rounds of ammunition, they believe was used to shoot Bedi.

Rikers Island prisoners have been shooting each other for years. [see: NYC Claims 'Prisoners Shoot Themselves to File Suit, PLN, Apr. 1.993]. Typically, prisoners bribe guards to smuggle guns into the jail with which they then either shoot themselves or have another prisoner shoot them. The shot prisoner then either sues the jail or attempts to escape from the hospital. Given the frequency of shootings in the jail, the lack of fatalities is surprising.


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