25-year-old inmate found dead in cell at NYC’s Rikers Island

NEW YORK (AP) — Authorities are investigating the death of a 25-year-old inmate in his cell at Rikers Island, the New York City Department of Correction said.

Brandon Rodriguez was found unresponsive in a cell at Rikers’ Otis Bantum Correctional Center early Tuesday, officials from the department said. Medical staff pronounced him dead.

“We are working closely with all relevant agencies to investigate the cause and circumstances so that we may better understand how this happened,” Correction Commissioner Vincent Schiraldi said in a statement. “Mr. Rodriguez’s loved ones have our utmost sympathy, this is an awful, painful tragedy.”

Sharon Covino, an attorney who represented Rodriguez, said her office is investigating the circumstances of the death as well.

Rodriguez was arrested Aug. 4 on Staten Island. The Staten Island Advance reports that he was arrested following a domestic incident.