NewsNational News


New York prisons lift ban on book about Attica uprising

Attica Book Ban
Posted at 5:03 PM, Aug 02, 2022

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York state prison authorities have lifted a ban on a book about the 1971 Attica uprising following a First Amendment lawsuit.

Author Heather Ann Thompson, a historian and professor at the University of Michigan, sued the state's prisons in March in Manhattan federal court over the censorship of her 2016 book "Blood in the Water: The Attica Uprising of 1971."

Prison official said last week in a letter to a Manhattan federal judge that they would dismiss the ban but will cut out a two-page map from all copies for security purposes.

The riot began in Attica, New York, on Sept. 9, 1971, when more than 1,300 inmates took over part of the prison to protest years of mistreatment.

The prisoners took 39 guards hostage.

The standoff ended on Sept. 13 when law enforcement officers shot tear gas into a prison yard before shooting into the smoke.

In total, 32 inmates and 11 hostages were killed.

No law enforcement officers were prosecuted for their role in the massacre.