Bodega Worker Files Lawsuit for Discrimination

( – The former bodega clerk who last year was charged with murder after fatally stabbing his attacker has sued Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg alleging racial discrimination, the New York Post reported.

In a lawsuit filed in Manhattan Federal Court last Friday, Jose Alba, who stabbed attacker Austin Simon during a fight at a Harlem bodega on July 1, 2022, claims that he was charged with second-degree murder and locked up at Rikers Island as part of Alvin Bragg’s quest for “racial equity” in the criminal justice system.

The lawsuit argues that while Bragg’s policies might be well-intentioned, the means and methods by which Bragg seeks to achieve them have had the opposite effect, resulting in racial discrimination against some defendants.

The lawsuit also names NYPD Detective William Garcia, along with the arresting officers and detectives.

Despite Alba claiming self-defense in stabbing the 35-year-old Simon, Alvin Bragg charged him with second-degree murder and requested a $500,000 bail. While the judge reduced the bail to $250,000, Alba still could not afford such a steep amount. As a result, he was sent to Rikers Island where, according to his lawsuit, he was subjected to “inhumane and unconstitutional conditions.”

Prosecutors lowered the bail amount to $50,000, and Alba was released after spending six days in Rikers.

After facing a public pressure campaign over Alba’s arrest, Bragg filed a motion to drop the charges, saying there was insufficient evidence to prove that Alba “was not justified in his use of deadly force.”

Alba’s lawsuit also names the Commissioner of the Department of Corrections and the city of New York for being “responsible for the unconstitutional conditions” and “inadequate medical care at Rikers Island.”

The former bodega clerk is seeking compensatory and punitive damages, the amounts of which will be determined by a jury, according to his attorney Rich Cardinale.

Copyright 2023,