Prosecutors drop murder charges against NYC Bodega worker

UPDATED 9:56 AM PT – Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Prosecutors are moving to drop murder charges against a New York City bodega worker who fatally stabbed a man who attacked him. The Manhattan district attorney filed a motion to dismiss the charges against 61-year-old Jose Alba Tuesday.

This came after a reported probe determined they could not prove Alba was not justified in using deadly force. Alba contends he acted in self-defense when he killed 34-year Simon Austin, who camera footage shows attacked him behind the counter of the Blue Moon bodega on July 1.

The case drew widespread scrutiny with Mayor Eric Adams among several of Albas notable supporters. Adams said he cannot dictate or mandate how the Manhattan district attorney prosecutes crimes. However, the Mayor did add that his heart goes out to the hard-working and honest Alba.

“I am hoping that we take all of that into consideration as this hard-working New Yorker was doing his job and someone aggressively went behind the counter to attack him,” Adams stated. “I support hard-working, innocent people that are doing their job.”

The United Bodegas of America and Yemeni American Merchants Association has been lobbying for Albas’ charges to be dropped, while explaining his act of self-defense was justified.

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