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August 25, 2019

After blinding his grandmother with his bare hands, Long Island man kills himself in jail

March 12, 2019
Michael Grief who allegedly gouged out his grandmother’s eyes committed suicide in jail last week. (Suffolk County District Attorney)

A Long Island man who allegedly gouged out his grandmother’s eyes committed suicide in jail last week, according to officials.

Michael Grief, 30, was being held at the Suffolk County jail in Riverhead, where a guard found him hanging in his cell Friday, according to Newsday. Grief, who was discovered around 4 a.m., was transferred to Peconic Bay Medical Center and then Southside Hospital in Bay Shore. He was pronounced dead at 11:12 p.m. Friday evening. Grief was not on suicide watch when he took his own life.


The suicide came just after Grief’s Wednesday arraignment where he pleaded not guilty to first-degree assault and two counts of second-degree assault against his 78-year-old grandmother, Sheila Grief. Grief was accused of “using his thumbs, [gouging] his grandmother’s eyes one at a time with such force that the globes of her eyes ruptured, both of them,” stated Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy Sini.

The altercation is said to have followed an argument after Grief’s grandmother called him out for overdrawing her debit card by $1,000.

Even following an eight-hour eye surgery, it was said that Grief’s grandmother was unlikely to regain her vision. When authorities detailed his grandmother’s injuries to him, Grief was nonchalant, simply replying, “So?”

According to ABC affiliate, ABC7NY, Grief had no prior arrests. He had a history of mental illness, for which he had previously been admitted.

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