Metro

Rikers inmate who jumped into East River dies: attorney

The Rikers Island inmate who escaped a jail barge and leaped into the East River has died, his attorney confirmed to The Post Wednesday — marking the city’s 14th inmate death this year.

Gregory Acevedo, 48 — who was being held for robbery — died just before 11 p.m. Tuesday, about 11 hours after he was pulled out of the water, his attorney Warren Silverman said. 

He climbed a recreation yard fence at the Vernon C. Bain Center, crawled under razor wire and then jumped five stories into the river at about 11:44 a.m. Tuesday, according to sources and a DOC spokesperson.

Gregory Acevedo, 48 – who was being held for robbery – died just before 11 p.m. Tuesday night, about 11 hours after he was pulled out of the water, his attorney Warren Silverman said.
Gregory Acevedo, 48, who was being held for robbery, died just before 11 p.m. Tuesday, about 11 hours after he was pulled out of the water, his attorney Warren Silverman said.
Getty Images

Staff threw the man several life preservers but they claim he refused to accept them, internal records show.

When he was pulled out of the water about 10 minutes later by the NYPD’s Harbor Unit, he was unresponsive, sources said.

He was rushed to Mount Sinai Queens, where he was initially listed in grave condition, according to sources and the FDNY.

Acevedo was ordered held without bail in connection to the February first-degree robbery case back in June, online records show. 

He was previously held for attempted murder, robbery, assault — an addition to an escape charge — from 1995 until he was bailed out in 2016.

A city Department of Correction rep called the Tuesday incident an “attempted escape” and said “an investigation is ongoing.”

Rikers Island
Acevedo was being held at Rikers Island on a first-degree robbery charge.
Getty Images

“Mr. Acevedo’s tragic passing is an immense loss,” DOC Commissioner Louis Molina said Wednesday. “We are conducting a preliminary investigation of this incident. Our thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones at this difficult time.”

His cause of death is under investigation by the city medical examiner’s office.

Deaths in DOC custody are up 40% so far this year compared to the same period in 2022, data show.

Silverman said Tuesday that even hours after the incident, the DOC had not called to inform him about what happened. 

“At this point, I don’t know if they bothered to contact anyone,” the lawyer said. “Once again, their system failed. I mean, he shouldn’t have been able to get to any position where he could have harmed himself, and clearly they dropped the ball, as usual.”

Leave a Comment