Rikers Island Correction Officer Michael Dorsainvil admitted in court that the statement he submitted regarding the beating of an inmate contains false information. However, he denies that that constitutes lying. Officer Dorsainvil was convicted, along with Officers Christopher Huggins and Mark Anglin, on assault charges for the beating of inmate Carl Williams. They were also convicted of charges for filing the false report that somehow they didn’t lie while not telling the truth in.
Via the New York Daily News:
He wrote an official account riddled with false statements — but he did not lie, a city correction officer testified Tuesday.
Officer Michael Dorsainvil, on trial for beating Rikers Island inmate Carl Williams and falsely claiming that the detainee had tried to hang himself, said on the stand that he was “ashamed” of signing a statement saying a suicidal Williams pulled out a string from a bag and climbed on a bench before the attack.
But those phony claims — debunked with security footage — were not lies, Dorsainvil, 40, testified.
“There was no bag, right?” asked Assistant District Attorney Pishoy Yacoub in a heated exchange during cross-examination in Bronx Supreme Court. “Right,” the officer replied.
“And it’s clear that there was no string, right?” the prosecutor went on.
“Right,” Dorsainvil said.
“So that was a lie, right?” Yacoub said.
“No,” the officer answered.
Dorsainvil and Officers Christopher Huggins, 34, and Mark Anglin, 41, face up to 15 years in prison on attempted gang assault charges for the encounter at the city jail.
The March 2013 episode escalated after Dorsainvil confiscated a bag of Williams’ food and ordered him, alone, into an intake area that doubles as a search pen, officials said.
Williams, 23, started hurling insults from inside the pen, the officer testified Tuesday. At one point, the inmate’s tone changed and he threatened to hang himself, the officer said.
“I’m a hang up. And if you come in here, I’m a cut you up,” Dorsainvil quoted him as saying. Williams emerged from the search pen with his shirt covered in blood. He needed nine stitches to repair wounds to his mouth, officials said.
Later, on his official “use of force” report, the officer wrote Williams had pulled a “string-like object” out of a bag and gotten up on a bench.
But after video surfaced that showed, among other things, Dorsainvil taking away Williams’ bag before entering the pen, the officers were indicted.
Dorsainvil, under cross examination, maintained that he did not know his sworn statement was false – despite being the officer who had tossed the bag in the garbage. “I didn’t know it was false until after I saw the video,” he testified.
“I’m ashamed I even submitted it,” he said.
Dorsainvil also claimed on his official report that Williams threw “wild, violent punches” at him — though he had no bruises on his face and only got treatment for a sprained ankle.