Racial Bias in New York Prisons

The Scourge of Racial Bias in New York State’s Prisons

2nd in a series by The New York Times

On Oct. 23, 2014, at Clinton, John Richard was stopped by Officer Brian Poupore, who took issue with his tinted glasses even though he has vision problems and had a medical permit to wear them, according to department records.

“Monkeys don’t wear glasses,” a sergeant said, according to Mr. Richard, who is serving a life sentence for murder.

When Mr. Richard refused to remove them, he said, Officer Poupore and several other guards jumped him. In their internal reports, the officers said Mr. Richard punched them several times and had to be subdued. After the encounter, Officer Poupore had a minor injury, according to the medical report, while the other officers had none.

The medical report said Mr. Richard had bruises all over his body, including his face, under his ear and on his back. He had trouble walking, the report said. His glasses were broken.

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