Manhattan DA asks for murder charge dismissal in bodega fatal stabbing case
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg has asked a judge to dismiss murder charges against Jose Alba – a bodega worker who fatally stabbed a man who attacked him while he was working on July 1.
Alba had faced one count of second-degree murder after he was arrested on July 2.
According to the complaint, Austin Simon, 35, was fatally stabbed by Alba after Simon had approached the bodega worker behind the counter at the Blue Moon Convenient Store. Minutes earlier, Alba had a confrontation with Simon’s girlfriend and her daughter over a “malfunctioning Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Card” and pulled a snack from the hand of the 10-year-old.
Simon is seen on surveillance video shoving Alba and grabbing him before Alba grabs a knife and stabs him repeatedly.
According to a DA filing on Tuesday:
“After investigation, the District Attorney's Office has concluded that a homicide case against Alba could not be proven at trial beyond a reasonable doubt. Consequently, the People will not be presenting the case to the grand jury, and hereby move to dismiss the Criminal Court complaint.”
Elected officials and groups such as the United Bodegas of America and the Yemeni American Merchants Association called for the murder charge to be dismissed – calling his actions self-defense.
Rep. Adriano Espaillat issued a statement:
“Jose Alba’s case did not go unnoticed, and I commend District Attorney Bragg for today’s motion to the court to dismiss Mr. Alba’s case following his review of the evidence.”