Details on the remaining two deaths weren’t immediately available.
The mayor touted the recovery of more than 2,700 weapons and other contraband that were found during tactical search operations, which paused under former Mayor Bill de Blasio. He also said that since they resumed in late February, stabbings and slashings are down 63%.
“We’re seeing progress,” Adams insisted.
The remarks come as a federal takeover of the jail looms in the background after prosecutors and a federal monitor appointed to oversee the agency found they’ve consistently failed to rectify a string of long-standing issues.
Earlier this month, Judge Laura Swain accepted a plan submitted by the DOC that outlined the steps they’ll take to fix the problems, which is expected to stave off a federal receivership at least until November.
When asked about staff absenteeism, one of the issues plaguing the agency that’s been cited in court, Adams noted 1,400 uniformed workers have come back to the job since Commissioner Louis Molina took over.
The Legal Aid Society lambasted the mayor in an emailed statement, saying his refusal to “take responsibility” for the deaths is both “irresponsible and callous.”
“This is emblematic of how City Hall views incarcerated people as second-class citizens, guilty until proven innocent and unworthy of compassion” the agency said.
“The extraordinarily high death rate on Mayor Adams’ watch, and the suffering of all who are kept in abysmal conditions inside, are a humanitarian crisis that this Administration seems incapable of rectifying any time soon.”