NYC: Murder Suspect Accidentally Released From Rikers Is Recaught 5 Weeks Later


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A man charged with murder who was mistakenly released from a New York City jail more than a month ago was taken back into custody Friday.

Christopher Buggs, 26, was arrested by members of a U.S. marshals fugitive task force and the New York City Department of Correction, said Peter Thorne, a spokesman for the city Correction Department.

Details of the arrest and how authorities found Buggs were not released. He was captured in the Bronx, according to media reports.

Buggs is awaiting trial for the 2018 fatal shooting of Ernest Brownlee, 55, at a Brooklyn bodega.

He was mistakenly released from Rikers Island in early March when a 30-day sentence for criminal contempt he was serving ended while he was detained on the murder charge. The error resulted in four jail employees being suspended without pay.

“We hope that Mr. Buggs’ swift return to Rikers Island provides some comfort to the victim’s family,” Thorne said in a statement.



  1. There is something wrong with the statement by the city’s Corrections Department. The return to jail of the suspect before his trial is not primarily intended to be a comfort to the victim’s family. Jail before conviction is primarily intended to assure the accused suspect is present for trial.