Fifth Rikers Island inmate death in 2022

For the fifth time so far in 2022, an inmate has died while being held in custody at Rikers Island, officials say.

Mary Yehudah, 31, who was in custody at the Rose M. Singer Center (RMSC) passed away on Wednesday, jail officials said in a news release.

She was pronounced deceased at approximately 5:11 a.m. at Elmhurst Hospital.  Her cause of death was not immediately available.

Yehudah had been in custody on a robbery charge since Feb. 12, 2022.

Commissioner Louis A. Molina issued a statement saying:  "Ms. Yehuda’s passing fills us with sadness, every life here is precious. Our thoughts are with her family and loved ones."

The death is being investigated by the State Attorney General's Office and the NYC Department of Investigation.

A federal monitor has given the city until the middle of May to correct issues at the jail or be placed under federal control.

Sixteen people died while being held in custody at Rikers in 2021. 

Rikers Island has been a major issue for lawmakers in New York City for the last several years. Plans to close the facility have moved slowly, while the average length of stay in the city's jails has increased from 187 days to 329 days.