Bronx DA: Rikers Island Inmate Indicted for Attempting to Rape a Nurse in the Jail and for Forcibly Touching a Female DOC Officer




Incidents Happened Hours Apart


             Bronx District Attorney Darcel D. Clark today announced that a Rikers Island inmate has been indicted on Attempted Rape in the first degree and additional charges for sexually abusing a nurse and for forcibly touching a female Department of Correction Officer in the jail.


District Attorney Clark said, “The defendant allegedly forcibly touched a female Correction Officer. Hours after that incident, the defendant allegedly attempted to rape a nurse assigned to the facility. He has been indicted for these appalling acts against women who work in the city’s jail.”


District Attorney Clark said the defendant, Michael Cleaver, 56, an inmate in Rikers Island, was arraigned today on Attempted Rape in the first degree, first-degree Sexual Abuse, first and second-degree Unlawful Imprisonment, two counts of Forcible Touching and two counts of third-degree Sexual Abuse before Bronx Supreme Court Justice Albert Lorenzo. Remand was continued and the defendant is due back in court on April 6, 2022.


According to the investigation, on November 12, 2021, at approximately 2:22 a.m. in the Eric M. Taylor Center (EMTC), the defendant allegedly lunged at a 39-year-old female Correction Officer and touched her in her breast area. At approximately 4:12 p.m., also in EMTC, the defendant allegedly forced the second victim, a 51-year-old nurse on Rikers Island, into a room and locked the door. Cleaver placed the victim in a bearhug and pushed her to the ground. He then placed his hand into her pants and pulled her clothes down, exposing part of her backside.  The victim yelled for help and another inmate broke the lock on the door and punched the defendant several times in an effort to get him off the victim. 


The case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Larry Pisahov of the Rikers Island Prosecution Bureau, and Senior Investigative Assistant District Attorney Miriam Bell-Blair of the Rikers Island Prosecution Bureau, under the supervision of Francis Alberts, Chief of the Rikers Island Prosecution Bureau, and under the overall supervision of Denise Kodjo, Deputy Chief of the Investigations Division, and Wanda Perez-Maldonado, Chief of the Investigations Division.


District Attorney Clark thanked Assistant District Attorney Adrienne Giunta, Deputy Chief of the Special Victims Division, for her assistance.


District Attorney Clark thanked Investigators Anthony Scoma, Paul Smith, and Walter Holmes, all of the Department of Correction Intelligence Bureau, for their work on the case.


An indictment is an accusatory instrument and not proof of a defendant’s guilt.

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