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Drug dealer who killed a Bronx prosecutor granted parole

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Jose Diaz is being released from prison in June of 2018. Jose Diaz, 48, fatally shot Bronx prosecutor Sean Healy, then 30, on August 30, 1990 (Photo courtesy of DOCCS/Handout)

By Anthony DelMundo and Reuven Blau, New York Daily News

A drug dealer convicted of gunning down a young Bronx prosecutor has been granted parole after serving 26 years in prison, the Daily News has learned.

Jose Diaz, 48, fatally shot Sean Healy, then 30, as he bent over to pick up a box of doughnuts from a store on East 163rd St. on Aug. 30, 1990.

Diaz, a 19-year-old school janitor at the time, sprayed the bodega with an Uzi as he tried to kill a rival drug dealer in the store, prosecutors said.

He’s to be released from Otisville Correctional Facility by July 5 or earlier, prison records show.

Before his death, Healy served as a lawyer in the Navy and traveled to India as a volunteer assisting Mother Teresa.

A state parole board originally decided to release Diaz in 2009.

But outcry back then from Healy’s family and the Bronx District Attorney's office convinced the board to rescind the decision.

Current Bronx DA Darcel Clark, who took over in 2016, brought up the same objections this time around about Diaz’s release. Her office sent the parole board a letter from Jean Walsh, a prosecutor involved in the case.

“The callous indifference to human life shown by Mr. Diaz is clearly an indication of his lack of regard for others and his potential for future harm,” Walsh wrote the parole board on April 9, 2018.

“He brought fear into his own community and into the lives of those who worked with Sean and those who resided around the courthouse.”
Jose Diaz at the 48th Precinct station. (Gerald Herbert/New York Daily News)

Prisoner advocates say the parole board’s decision should be honored.

“The job of the parole board is not to resentence someone,” said JoAnne Page, president of the Fortune Society, an organization that helps former prisoners.

“Their job is to look at what has happened during the years the person has been incarcerated and make an assessment,” she added. “The seriousness of the crime is baked into the original sentence.”

In exchange for confessing, Diaz negotiated a deal and was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison instead of the 25-to-llfe maximum.

All told, Diaz had gone before the parole board eight times before his scheduled release, records show.

Healy’s brother, Patrick, did not immediately respond to a call seeking comment.

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U.S. - U.S. Daily News: Drug dealer who killed a Bronx prosecutor granted parole
Drug dealer who killed a Bronx prosecutor granted parole
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