kalief browder suicide rikers brothers baldwin intv nr_00000525.jpg
kalief browder suicide rikers brothers baldwin intv nr_00000525.jpg
Now playing
01:18
Man jailed for 3 years without trial kills himself (2015)
Brooke Baldwin last show goodbye CNN newsroom vpx_00000217.png
CNN
Brooke Baldwin last show goodbye CNN newsroom vpx_00000217.png
Now playing
03:56
'Get a little uncomfortable': See Brooke Baldwin's last words on air
Now playing
01:24
How Kyra Sedgwick got the cops called on Tom Cruise
Now playing
05:18
Anderson Cooper explains how he overcomes being shy
US Navy
Now playing
01:28
Pentagon confirms UFO video is real, taken by Navy pilot
Kristina Barboza
Now playing
03:09
Grieving mom's advice to other families: You can try to help, support and love
Fancy Feast/Purina
Now playing
01:06
Cat food company makes a cookbook ... for humans
Now playing
02:35
WWII veteran: End of the war was 'the biggest thrill of my life'
Google Earth's new timelapse feature
Google
Google Earth's new timelapse feature
Now playing
01:09
Google Earth's new Timelapse feature shows 40 years of climate change in just seconds
FOX/"The Masked Singer"
Now playing
01:23
'The Masked Singer' reveals identity of The Orca
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 07:  A visual representation of the digital Cryptocurrency, Bitcoin on December 07, 2017 in London, England. Cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Lightcoin have seen unprecedented growth in 2017, despite remaining extremely volatile. While digital currencies across the board have divided opinion between financial institutions, and now have a market cap of around 175 Billion USD, the crypto sector coninues to grow, as it continues to see wider mainstreem adoption. The price of one Bitcoin passed 15,000 USD across many exchanges today taking it higher than previous all time highs.  (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 07: A visual representation of the digital Cryptocurrency, Bitcoin on December 07, 2017 in London, England. Cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Lightcoin have seen unprecedented growth in 2017, despite remaining extremely volatile. While digital currencies across the board have divided opinion between financial institutions, and now have a market cap of around 175 Billion USD, the crypto sector coninues to grow, as it continues to see wider mainstreem adoption. The price of one Bitcoin passed 15,000 USD across many exchanges today taking it higher than previous all time highs. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
Now playing
03:07
Bitcoin has an energy problem
The new all-electric Mercedes-EQS
Mercedes-Benz AG
The new all-electric Mercedes-EQS
Now playing
01:05
See the new all-electric EQS luxury sedan from Mercedes
Now playing
01:32
Scientists turned spiderwebs into music and it sounds like a nightmare
Jeopardy Productions, Inc.
Now playing
01:02
Aaron Rodgers' Green Bay Packers question stumps 'Jeopardy!' contestants
Now playing
05:18
Coinbase CFO: We're an on-ramp to the crypto economy
CNN
Now playing
02:12
'Too dangerous to do anymore': Sacha Baron Cohen on Borat

Story highlights

Kalief Browder spent three years at Rikers Island

He was released after the charges against him were dropped

Browder spoke to CNN's sister network HLN in 2013

(CNN) —  

A New York man who spent three years behind bars at Rikers Island without being convicted of a crime has taken his own life, his attorney told CNN.

Kalief Browder was a 16-year-old sophomore when he was arrested, and later charged with second-degree robbery. He was released in 2013 when the charges against him were dropped.

Browder’s story drew national attention when he was profiled in a story in the New Yorker, which also reported on Browder’s death.

Paul Prestia, Browder’s attorney, said Sunday that Browder hung himself Saturday. He had just turned 22.

“Every day was a struggle. He lived with a degree of sadness every day since his release,” Prestia said.

Browder spoke to CNN’s sister network HLN in 2013, just months after he was released. He described the physical and emotional abuse he suffered in jail. Browder spent long stretches of time in solitary confinement. He missed his sister’s wedding, the birth of his nephew, his own prom and graduation.

While at Rikers, he attempted suicide at least six times, according to a lawsuit Browder filed against New York City, its police department, the Bronx district attorney and others, including several corrections officers. The suit claims he was falsely arrested, maliciously prosecuted, and denied a speedy trial.

Browder was hospitalized for five days in November 2013 after attempting suicide. According to his attorney, he was attending a community college in the Bronx, and had a 3.5 GPA.

Prestia told CNN that Browder’s lawsuit against the city would continue to move forward. He described Browder as bright, humble, and someone with a great sense of humor.

“Prior to going to jail, I never had any mental illnesses,” Browder told HLN. “I never tried to hurt myself, I never tried to kill myself, I never had any thoughts like that. I had stressful times prior to going to jail, but not like during jail. That was the worst experience that I ever went through in my whole life.”

CNN’s Janet DiGiacomo and Allison Brennan and HLN’s Amanda Sloane contributed to this report.