Trump meets bodega worker cleared of murder for stabbing ex-con to death in self-defense: Crowd chants ‘four more years’ as he arrives in Harlem

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Written By Maya Cantina
  • Trump visited Jose Alba, a bodega worker who killed an ex-con in self-defense 
  • The former president made the stop after the second day of his criminal trial 
  • Trump received a raucous reception as he arrived at the bodega on Tuesday  

Donald Trump left his criminal trial on Tuesday and visited a bodega worker cleared of murder for stabbing an ex-con to death in self-defense in his Manhattan store.

The former president headed to Hamilton Heights to speak to Jose Alba, who knifed Austin Simon to death in July 2022, when he jumped the counter in his store. 

Trump received a raucous welcome as he arrived at the bodega, with the crowd chanting ‘four more years’ as the former president joined in. 

Charges against Alba were dropped in July by Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg, who has become a frequent target of Trump’s attacks on the campaign trail.  

Alba knifed Austin Simon to death in July, 2022, when he jumped the counter in his store

Trump received a raucous reception as he arrived at the bodega on Tuesday, as a crowd chanted 'four more years' at the former president

Trump received a raucous reception as he arrived at the bodega on Tuesday, as a crowd chanted ‘four more years’ at the former president 

Alba (right) fled to upstate New York and planned to move back to his home in the Dominican Republic because he feared for his life after he was charged

Alba (right) fled to upstate New York and planned to move back to his home in the Dominican Republic because he feared for his life after he was charged

Alba was attacked by Simon’s girlfriend during a vicious spat over a bag of chips, when her she tried to pay $3 but her card was declined.

As Alba and Simon fought, the girlfriend who started the row produced a knife from her bag and slashed Alba in the arm.

The girlfriend was never charged, but Alba was accused of murder in a case that sparked fury across the city. 

Alba fled to upstate New York and planned to move back to his home in the Dominican Republic because he feared for his life after he was charged, and quit his job after receiving an outpouring of hate over the stabbing.

But now he is back in the city.

On July 19, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office asked a judge to drop the charges Alba after having faced intense backlash, including criticism from the city’s mayor. 

Trump’s appearance came as Bragg has been a frequent target of his attacks.  

Surveillance footage clearly showed that Simon had moved behind the counter at the convenience store in Hamilton Heights and pushed the store clerk into a stack of shelves before grabbing him.

It was only then that Alba reached over to a shelf and pulled out a knife to fight back.

Trump made the stop at the bodega at the conclusion of the second day of his criminal trial

Trump made the stop at the bodega at the conclusion of the second day of his criminal trial 

The girlfriend was never charged, but Alba (above walking into a police precinct) was accused of murder in a case that sparked fury across the city

The girlfriend was never charged, but Alba (above walking into a police precinct) was accused of murder in a case that sparked fury across the city

Video footage reveals the bodega worker Jose Alba was trying to avoid confrontation with Austin Simon in the minutes leading up to the July 1 stabbing

Video footage reveals the bodega worker Jose Alba was trying to avoid confrontation with Austin Simon in the minutes leading up to the July 1 stabbing

During the altercation, Alba was apparently stabbed by Simon’s girlfriend, who instigated the argument when her benefits card was declined. The girlfriend was never charged in the incident.

The motion to dismiss stated that prosecutors ‘have determined that we cannot prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant was not justified in his use of deadly physical force.’

The filing said that ‘a homicide case against Alba could not be proven at trial beyond a reasonable doubt’ and that the case will not be presented to a grand jury.

Jose Alba shows off the injuries he sustained during the vicious attack in his bodega

Jose Alba shows off the injuries he sustained during the vicious attack in his bodega 

Alba (arm pictured) shows photographers his injuries alongside friend Francisco Marte

Alba (arm pictured) shows photographers his injuries alongside friend Francisco Marte 

Other videos obtained by DailyMail.com show Simon – who was on parole for attacking a police officer when he died – marching behind the bodega counter to confront Alba.

‘Papa, I don’t want a problem, papa,’ Alba told him calmly.

Simon charged into the Blue Moon convenience store minutes after his girlfriend tried to buy a bag of chips for her daughter, but her electronic benefits card had been declined.

Donald TrumpNew York

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