Matthew Sedacca, New York Post, September 30, 2023
A former bodega clerk who was infamously charged with murder after fatally stabbing an attacker in his store last year in what he claimed was self-defense is suing lefty Manhattan District Attorney Alvin and the New York City Police Department for racial discrimination.
Former clerk Jose Alba, who stabbed ex-con Austin Simon to death during a fight at the Blue Moon bodega in Harlem in July 2022, claims he was hit with second-degree murder charges and endured days under lockup on Rikers Island because of Bragg’s pursuit of “racial equity” in the Manhattan criminal justice system, according to the Manhattan Federal Court suit filed Friday.
NYC Bodega worker (Jose Alba) is attacked by an irate customer (Austin Simon). He kills him in self defense and is now being charged with murder and held on $250K bail he can’t afford. pic.twitter.com/OYjI8S4Ye5
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“While in theory, Bragg’s ‘racial equity’ policies are a well-intentioned attempt by him to implement even-handed justice, the means and methods employed by Bragg have instead had an opposite effect and resulted in discrimination against certain defendants based on race,” states the suit, which also names NYPD Detective William Garcia along with unnamed arresting officers and police detectives.
On July 1, 2022, Alba, a 61-year-old Dominican immigrant, stabbed Simon, a 35-year-old black man, multiple times at the Harlem bodega, after the hardworking clerk got into an argument with his attacker’s girlfriend because she couldn’t pay for a bag of chips, video revealed.
The ex-con approached Alba from behind the counter and shoved him, sparking a fight that ended in Simon’s death and the clerk’s arrest, after he called the police.
Despite Alba’s claims of self-defense, Bragg charged the clerk with second-degree murder and requested bail be set at $500,000, although a judge lowered it to $250,000.