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Correction Officers Rally Behind Rikers Island Asst. Deputy Warden Accused Of Excessive Force

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Edwin Diaz (credit: CBS 2)

Edwin Diaz (credit: CBS 2)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A Rikers Island Correction supervisor has been charged with excessively attacking an inmate, who had punched a female officer.

Correction officers are now galvanized behind him.

Some 150 officers and supervisors came out in support of Assistant Deputy Warden Edwin Diaz, who didn’t want to speak of the charges on Thursday.

“No comment,” he told reporters, including CBS 2’s John Slattery.

Diaz has been indicted on charges of assault and falsifying records of the assault. The incident is not new as it took place in September of 2008.

It all stems from Diaz coming to the aid of a female officer who was being attacked by an inmate.

That 22-year-old convict Jesus Alejandro, was was serving 23 years for fatally stabbing his girlfriend 26 times and slitting her throat. He allegedly punched the female correction officer.

“He had grabbed a female officer by the hair and he pummeled her and bloodied her face and the assistant deputy warden comes to her aid, and he’s indicted,” said Sidney Schwartzbaum of the Deputy Wardens’ Association.

The Deputy Wardens’ Association is calling it a travesty. It took the DA three and a half years to bring the case, after the Department of Correction decided not to discipline Diaz.

“He’s absolutely adamant that he is not guilty and he’s eager to have a trial and I tried to push that fact with the judge,” Diaz’s attorney, Kenneth Gomez, said.

It’s a question of whether excessive force was used and whether records were changed to cover the truth.

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