New York City Department of Correction

New York City Department of Correction
New York City Department of Correction
Abbreviation NYC DOC
Patch of the New York City Department of Correction.
NYC Corrections Shield.jpg
Shield of the New York City Department of Correction.
Motto NY's Boldest
Agency overview
Formed 1895
Employees 14,000
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* City of New York in the state of New York, USA
Map of New York Highlighting New York City.svg
Map of New York City Department of Correction's jurisdiction.
Legal jurisdiction New York City
General nature
Operational structure
Headquarters Jackson Heights, Queens
Correction Officers 9,500
Commissioner responsible Dora Schriro
Agency executive Larry Davis Sr., Chief
Official Site
* Divisional agency: Division of the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.

The New York City Department of Correction is responsible for New York City's inmates, housing the majority of them on Rikers Island.[1] It employs 9,500 uniformed officers and 1,400 civilian staff, has 543 vehicles,[2] and processes over 100,000 new inmates every year,[3] retaining a population of inmates of between 13,000 and 18,000.[2] Its nickname is New York's Boldest.[3] Previously located in Manhattan, the Department of Correction headquarters has now moved to the Bulova building in the northern section of Jackson Heights, Queens, minutes from Rikers Island.



The New York City Department of Correction was first founded as a separate entity in New York City in 1895 after a split from the Department of Public Charities and Correction.[1] Roosevelt Island, then called Blackwell's Island, was the main penal institution under the jurisdiction of the DOC until the 1930s when it was closed. The penal institutions moved to Rikers Island, which the city purchased for $180,000, where 10 prisons and 17,000 inmates are now held.[1]

In 1995, the prison system in New York City had over 1,000 stabbings, and in 2002 new safety initiatives were undertaken to improve security.[3] By 2007, the number of stabbings was reduced to 19, making that year the Department of Correction's safest on record.[3]

In 2009, former commissioner of both the Missouri and Arizona prison systems Dora Schriro was selected to head the department, with some citing a need in the department for a boost in morale.[4] Schriro was named in several federal court cases such as Schriro v. Smith and Schriro v. Summerlin. Schriro served with the United States Department of Homeland Security prior to coming to the Department.

Power and Authority of Correction Officers

NYC Correction officers are New York State peace officers authorized to make warrantless arrests, carry and use a firearm, and use physical and deadly force. Officers have peace officer powers both on and off duty.


There are ten titles (referred to as ranks) in the New York City Department of Correction. Their images refer to the uniform rank insignia. However, there are also equivalent level civilian titles as well whom also have equivalent power and responsibility and are saluted due to following uniform customs and courtesies. From highest to lowest rank, they are:

Title Insignia
Commissioner of Department
5 Gold Stars.svg
Chief of Department / First Deputy Commissioner
4 Gold Stars.svg
Deputy Chief / Deputy Commissioner
3 Gold Stars.svg
Supervising Warden / Associate Commissioner
2 Gold Stars.svg
Warden / Assistant Commissioner
1 Gold Star.svg
Deputy Warden in Command
Colonel Gold.png
Deputy Warden / Chaplain
Colonel Gold.png
Assistant Deputy Warden
US-O4 insignia.svg
Correction Captain
Captain insignia gold.svg
Correction Officer

Tour of Duty

In the New York City Department of Correction, one day is divided into three 8-hour and 31-minute shifts: 11:00 PM to 7:31 AM (called a 2300hrs to 0731hrs), 7:00 AM to 3:31 PM (called an 0700hrs to 1531hrs), and 3:00 PM to 11:31 PM (called a 1500hrs to 2331hrs). Officers work 4 of these shifts per week based upon a rotating squad chart (ie. 4 working days, 2 days off then another 4 working days and 2 days off). There is also a 5 and 2 squad (Monday - Friday, with Saturday and Sundays off) for special units (ie. Emergency Service Unit, Investigation Division, Intelligence Unit, Academy and Firearms Training Units, etc.)

Equipment and Vehicles

Correction officers are equipped with a firearm, celayaton baton, canister of chemical agent, handcuffs, flashlight, bullet resistant vest, and a radio that is directly linked to the Central Dispatcher and other Corrections officers.

Although all correction officers are trained and authorized to carry firearms, only correction officers at certain post assignments carry a firearm due to the potential threat of prisoners overpowering an officer and seizing their firearm. Any officer in areas of the prison where they may have contact with prisoners are unarmed. Officers assigned to prisoner transport units, hospitals, court buildings, exterior patrol posts, and guard towers carry firearms. All correction officers can carry a firearm off duty.

The department uses numerous vehicles including Chevrolet Impalas, Ford vans, transport buses, firetrucks, and riot vehicles.[5][6]

Service Pistol

NYC Correction officers are authorized to carry on duty the Smith & Wesson 5946. Senior officers hired before 1993 are still authorized to carry the Smith & Wesson .38 revolver models 64 and 10 (2", 3", or 4" barrel). Off duty weapons are all of the above plus the Beretta 92FS and the Sig Sauer P226. Glock Model 17,19,26.

Fallen officers

Since the establishment of the New York City Department of Correction, 9 officers have died in the line of duty.[7]

Officer Date of Death Details
Deputy Keeper Hugh McGovern
Monday, October 29, 1900
Keeper Jeremiah Murphy
Wednesday, November 3, 1926
Warden Peter J. Mallon
Wednesday, November 3, 1926
Deputy Warden William J. McConnell
Saturday, November 26, 1932
Correction Officer George Motchan
Monday, September 15, 1975
Captain Stanley Delano Rhem
Monday, June 10, 1991
Corrections Officer Arturo M. Meyers
Thursday, June 17, 1993
Corrections Officer Bruce Mayo
Monday, October 4, 1993
Correction Officer Kenny Michael Duncan
Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Notable People Working at NYC DOC

Over the years, several notable people have come through the ranks of DOC:

  • Mickey Marcus, Commissioner in 1940- Would go on to serve in World War II with the United States Army and later join the Israeli Defense Force and be instrumental in leading their forces during that country's independence movement.
  • Bernard Kerik, Commissioner in 1994-Would eventually become Commissioner of NYPD and later be nominated for Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, which eventually brought up corruption and ethics violations after an investigation into his background.

See also

Portal icon New York City portal
Portal icon Criminal justice portal
Portal icon Law enforcement/Law enforcement topics portal


  1. ^ a b c History of the DOC New York City Department of Correction, retrieved March 13, 2008
  2. ^ a b Facilities Overview New York City Department of Correction, retrieved March 13, 2008
  3. ^ a b c d Press Release - January 6, 2008 New York City Department of Corrections, available here retrieved March 13, 2008
  4. ^ City Jails Get a New Commissioner [1] The Village Voice
  5. ^ NYC Corrections Chevy Impala
  6. ^ NYC Corrections Vehicles
  7. ^ [2]

External links

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