Free Jose Alba!
A hard-working Manhattan bodega clerk who was forced to grab a knife to fend off a violent ex-con, now finds himself sitting behind bars at the notorious Rikers Island jail charged with murder and unable to post $250,000 bail.
The sky-high bail for Jose Alba — who has no known criminal history — was just half of what controversial Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office demanded, despite surveillance video showing the clerk being assaulted by his alleged victim in the bodega.
Alba, 51, was charged with the fatal stabbing of Austin Simon, 34, who can be seen storming behind the counter at the Hamilton Heights Grocery on Broadway and West 139th Street to attack the store worker Friday night.
“It was either him or the guy at the moment,” Alba’s daughter Yulissa told The Post Wednesday, saying it was a case of self-defense.
“He’s never hurt anybody. He’s never had an altercation where he had to defend himself. This is the first time for him.”
This poor man is on Rikers Island because he defended himself from a violent ex-con. Words fail. Alba deserves a medal for ridding the city of a thug. The New York Post editorial board points out:
Thanks to Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, New York is a city turned upside down.
Get caught with an illegal gun, get released without bail. Shove an elderly person to the ground, attack someone because they are Asian, a slap on the wrist. Shoplift again . . . and again . . . and again . . . nothing.
But defend yourself and your place of business from a man who attacks you, and Bragg sends you to Rikers.
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That’s one sign of the values that matter to New York’s ruling class today. Here’s another:
You can’t kill violent thugs who assault you while you are minding your own business without the Democratic DA putting you in jail, but you can kill unborn children, and the state’s Democratic governor will brag about it.