Morello says that the 23-hour lock-in doesn't necessarily mean that the inmates are in their cells 23 hours a day. They receive the same out-of-cell activities as other inmates, and they're allowed to watch television in adjoining plexiglass cells.

"The suicides that have occurred since Commissioner Horn took office at the beginning of 2003 total 25 percent fewer than in the equal number of years prior to the start of this tenure," Morello says. But he declined to state the exact number of officers assigned to a given shift in the protective-custody unit on security grounds.

For now, the investigation into Morales's death at Rikers continues. Heredia is mulling whether to file a notice of claim against the city.

Ken Garduno

Details

ALSO
The Jail Interview Steven Morales Gave to Columbia Grads
by Molly Messick and Sarah Morgan

"Everyone failed this kid, and now the correction system has failed him too," Solano says.

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