Bodega clerk sues woke Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg for RACIAL DISCRIMINATION after he was slung in Rikers Island for killing attacker in self defense ‘to push prosecutor’s ‘equity’ agenda’
A former bodega clerk is suing Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg for racial discrimination after he was booked into Rikers Island jail for killing an attacker in self-defense.
Jose Alba was charged with manslaughter after stabbing ex-con Austin Simon in the neck and chest on July 1, 2022, at a Blue Moon bodega in Harlem.
After an outburst of anger over the decision to prosecute, Bragg’s office on July 19 asked a judge to drop charges against Alba after facing strong backlash, including criticism from the city’s mayor.
Now Alba is taking on the New York City Police Department and Bragg with claims that he was a pawn in the district attorney’s push for “racial equality,” according to Manhattan Federal Court documents filed Friday.
The lawsuit names NYPD Detective William Garcia, along with unnamed arresting officers and detectives.
A former bodega clerk is suing Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg for racial discrimination after he was thrown into Rikers Island jail for killing an attacker in self-defense
“While Bragg’s “racial equity” policy is in theory a well-intentioned attempt by him to implement balanced justice, the means and methods used by Bragg have instead had the opposite effect and resulted in discrimination against certain defendants based on of race. ‘ there stands that.
Alba was working at the Blue Moon deli on July 1 when he fatally stabbed Simon in the neck and chest.
After a public campaign, Bragg finally dropped the charges on July 19, 2022, admitting that there was not enough evidence to prove that Alba was “unjustified in his use of deadly physical force.”
Surveillance footage clearly showed that Simon had gotten behind the counter of the Hamilton Heights convenience store and pushed the store clerk against a stack of shelves before grabbing him.
Only then did Alba reach into a shelf and pull out a knife to fight back.
During the altercation, Alba was apparently stabbed by Simon’s girlfriend, who caused the row when her benefits card was refused. The girlfriend was never charged in the incident.
Despite Alba’s claims of self-defense, Bragg charged the clerk with second-degree murder and requested a $500,000 bond, although it was reduced to $250,000.
The store clerk was unable to pay the bill and was taken to Rikers, where he claims he endured “inhumane and unconstitutional conditions,” according to the complaint.
Rikers Island is a 413-acre island in the East River in the Bronx, home to New York City’s largest prison.
Bragg’s decision sparked vicious reactions, including Mayor Eric Adams and former NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton.
Surveillance footage from the Blue Moon supermarket in Hamilton Heights showed Jose Alba, 61, being attacked before grabbing a knife and stabbing Austin Simon, 35, on July 1.
Alba, a hard-working store clerk who seemed to protect himself, had to spend six days in jail before being released when prosecutors lowered his bail to $50,000.
“My heart goes out to the employee who was doing his job in the store,” Adams said at the time.
“I hope we all take that into consideration as this hard-working New Yorker was doing his job and someone aggressively went behind the counter to attack him.”
After a public campaign, on July 19, 2022, Bragg ultimately dropped the charges, conceding that there was not enough evidence to prove that Alba was “unjustified in his use of deadly physical force.”
The lawsuit also names Department of Corrections Commissioner Louis Molina and other DOC personnel, along with the city, as “responsible for the unconstitutional conditions of confinement and inadequate medical care on Rikers Island.”
Alba announced plans to file a lawsuit in February, but the case was postponed as they tried to reach a settlement, Rich Cardinale, who represents Alba, told the New York Post.
Alba spoke briefly to the media after the charges were dropped. He said the wounds he sustained during the altercation were “healing.” Alba’s battered arm is depicted as the bodega worker shielded his face behind his door.
Alba showed his wounds to DailyMail.com on July 11, 2022
Cardinale said his client will seek compensatory and punitive damages, determined by a jury, although no award has been given at this time.
Bragg “treats people differently and hurts people,” Cardinale told the NYP.
“Meanwhile, other people are repeatedly committing crimes and he continues to give them a chance.”
“We cannot continue to pit ourselves against each other based on race.”
DailyMail.com has reached out to the NYPD, DOC, the city’s legal department and the district attorney’s office for comment.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the Law Department said, “The city will review the case when it is filed and respond accordingly.”