Moussa Diarra: NYC parking garage worker who shot suspected thief says he 'didn’t do anything wrong' as he breaks down while being cuffed to bed
MANHATTAN, NEW YORK CITY: A Manhattan parking garage worker, who had originally been charged with attempted murder for shooting an armed thief, sobbed while being handcuffed to his hospital bed on Sunday, April 2, 2023. He was distraught over the outcome. "I got bullets in me, and I'm cuffed to a hospital bed, but I didn't do anything wrong," grieved Moussa Diarra, 57, according to Meyers Parking's Chief Operating Officer Michael Carolan.
Diarra sustained gunshot wounds twice during a struggle with alleged burglar Charles Rhodie at Carolan's West 31st Street workshop early on Saturday, April 1, 2023, before shooting the suspect. As a result of having Rhodie's gun at one point, the Manhattan garage worker was originally charged by police with criminal possession of a weapon. However, the charges were later dropped by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg's office on Sunday. The accusations against Rhodie persist, including attempted murder, as per New York Post.
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Who is Moussa Diarra?
New York City parking garage attendant Moussa Diarra has also been charged with assault and criminal possession of a weapon in relation to the incident that occurred at around 5.30 am. The attendant had seen a man on the second level of the West 31st Street garage in Manhattan peering into cars. Diarra took the man outside and interrogated him about what was in his luggage since he had a suspicion that the man was stealing. The man then pulled a gun on Diarra, who tried to take the weapon. The worker was shot in the stomach and had a graze to the ear after the pistol was discharged. He then turned the gun on the suspected thief and shot him in the chest.
Charles Rhodie, 59, the suspected thief, was also accused of attempted murder, assault, and criminal weapon possession. According to authorities, he was also charged with burglary. Diarra and Rhodie were taken to Bellevue Hospital in stable condition following Saturday's incident at the parking garage.
Meanwhile, people on the internet are furious a for charging the New York City worker. A user wrote, "How can this be happening in America?" Another user wrote, "As they say the criminal are protected and the victims are sent to prison." One user claimed, "HORRIBLE!!!! I can't believe this is America anymore. I hope the public puts pressure on the DA and this parking garage attendant has the charges against him dropped." "We need to start advocating for these men in their self defense.," a user remarked. Another user said, "Life in prison for Moussa & no doubt a new apartment, steak dinner & tickets to a Broadway show for the actual criminal."
How can this be happening in America?— Don Barcome, Jr.🇺🇸Oly⭐️⭐️⭐️ (@dbznd) April 2, 2023
“I got bullets in me..I’m chained to a hospital bed, but I didn’t do anything wrong,” Moussa Diarra, 57, lamented, according to Meyers Parking owner Michael Carolan..”
Prayers are with you #Moussa#WakeupAmericahttps://t.co/skWV44WQXe
As they say the criminal are protected and the victims are sent to prison.— PhillyFails (@FailsPhilly) April 2, 2023
HORRIBLE!!!! I can't believe this is America anymore. I hope the public puts pressure on the DA and this parking garage attendant has the charges against him dropped.— DebVader (@DebVader) April 2, 2023
We need to start advocating for these men in their self defense.,— Bran (@branwynne) April 2, 2023
Life in prison for Moussa & no doubt a new apartment, steak dinner & tickets to a Broadway show for the actual criminal— BritintheBronx. (@Heatpress1977) April 2, 2023
What is DA Alvin Braggs' decision?
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office had reportedly dropped Diarra's charges on Sunday. The man appeared utterly dejected in a photograph taken at Bellevue Hospital that NY Post was able to acquire before he was cleared. "One of my first thoughts was a political football, and this gentleman shouldn’t become a political football," Meyers Parking’s Chief Operating Officer Michael Carolan said, as Bragg continued to draw criticism for his allegedly lax local anti-crime policies.
"I can’t get my head around, necessarily, the legal process of charging an individual and having to go through 48 hours for his family and himself," Carolan stated. "Here’s a gentleman who’s just a hardworking individual doing his job," he said regarding Diarra. "You just think you’re doing the right thing. The altercation happens because of the other individual, not our guy. He’s reacting." 'You just think you’re doing the right thing' Diarra underwent surgery for two gunshot wounds—one to his ear and one to his gut—his attorney Charles Clayman claimed. Cops ultimately accused both men of illegal possession of a weapon, assault, and attempted murder, leaving Diarra injured and perplexed. Only after Bragg's office declared that it would not pursue criminal charges against Diarra while an investigation was ongoing did the cuffs come off of him later on Sunday.
'He was nervous, panicked and reacted'
"My understanding is they saw [Rhodie] kind of in between vehicles," Carolan claimed. "So, they brought him downstairs, and there was a conversation about a bag and wanting to make sure he didn’t take anything while he was up there for that brief time. "He pulled out a gun, and [Diarra’s] flight or fight kicks in," he said. "I’m sure he was nervous and panicked and reacted."
'So all’s well that ends well'
Rhodie still faces charges despite having at least 20 prior arrests, most of which were for petit larceny, with the most recent one happening in 2018. According to reports, Diarra has no priors. "We are more than pleased with the result," Diarra’s lawyer, told NY Post. "I think what they wanted to do was sort things out, and both men had been shot," he said of police. "And they just didn’t have time just to start talking to witnesses at that point." He added, "By this morning, people understood exactly what had happened, what a hero and victim my client was. Obviously not the perpetrator," he stated. "So all’s well that ends well."
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