Arizona Prosecutor Refuses to Extradite Murder Suspect to Manhattan DA, Citing Concerns over Soft-on-Crime Approach

Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell has made it clear that she will not hand over murder suspect Raad Almansoori to the Manhattan District Attorney’s office. Mitchell expressed her lack of trust in Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg’s ability to keep the accused killer behind bars, implying that he is soft on crime. Instead, Mitchell plans to prosecute Almansoori on two violent felonies in Arizona before considering his extradition to New York.

During an appearance on “Fox & Friends,” Mitchell emphasized the importance of prioritizing the victims and ensuring that Almansoori remains in custody. She stated, “We have two very violent crimes here. We have two women that were stabbed, and he is facing a lengthy mandatory prison sentence here, and even though there was a homicide in New York, we can guarantee that he is going to stay in custody here.”

Mitchell clarified that her decision does not mean Almansoori will evade justice in New York. However, she insisted that Bragg will have to wait until she is confident that he will remain incarcerated. “Let me be very clear: My heart goes out to the next of kin of the victim in New York,” she said. “And I want to be very clear to the public, we’re not saying that he will never be prosecuted in New York for what he did, but we’re saying we’re going first. And that way, when we secure a prison sentence on him, that has to be honored when he is extradited to New York City.”

Almansoori is facing charges of carjacking and stabbing a woman in Arizona, as well as kidnapping and stabbing a McDonald’s worker during a crime spree following the Soho hotel stabbing in New York. The series of attacks began on February 7 when Almansoori allegedly assaulted and strangled Denisse Oleas-Arancibia, a 38-year-old Queens mother working as an escort, inside the Soho 54 Hotel.

Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg initially sought Almansoori’s extradition to New York to face murder charges related to the Soho incident. However, Mitchell’s unexpected announcement on Wednesday halted the process. “I’ve instructed my extradition attorneys not to agree to that,” she stated during a press conference. “We’re gonna keep him here. These are mandatory prison sentences. Having observed the treatment of violent criminals in the New York area by the Manhattan DA there, Alvin Bragg, I think it’s safer to keep him here.”

During her appearance on Fox & Friends, Mitchell cited Bragg’s decision to release a group of migrants charged with assaulting two NYPD officers near Times Square as evidence of his lenient approach. However, Mitchell mistakenly referred to since-disproved reports that the migrants had fled to Arizona. Federal immigration authorities in Arizona clarified that the group apprehended there was not connected to the attack on the police officers, as all the suspects had already been taken into custody in New York.

In response to Mitchell’s statements, the Manhattan DA’s office accused her of playing politics at the expense of Almansoori’s victims. Emily Tuttle, a representative for Bragg, stated, “It is deeply disturbing that DA Mitchell is playing political games in a murder investigation. In Manhattan, we are serious about New Yorkers’ safety, which is why murders are down 24% and shootings are down 38% since D.A. Bragg took office. New York’s murder rate is less than half that of Phoenix, Arizona, because of the hard work of the NYPD and all of our law enforcement partners. It is a slap in the face to them and to the victim in our case to refuse to allow us to seek justice and full accountability for a New Yorker’s death.”

Author: CrimeDoor

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