David Gilbert “He has served 40 years.. He was the driver, not the murderer”

40 Years is a long time for someone whose involvement was being at the scene of a Murder.

Ex-cop Dan White received a 5 year sentence for MURDERING IN COLD BLOOD San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk in November 1978.

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Excerpted from New York Times 8.23.2021

David Gilbert, who was serving a 75-year sentence for felony murder in the notorious Rockland County crime, will now be eligible for parole.

In the waning hours of his final day in office, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo commuted the prison sentence of one of the members of the gang behind the infamous robbery of a Brink’s armored car in 1981 that left two police officers and a guard dead, a politically motivated ambush that continues to reverberate 40 years later.

David Gilbert is serving a 75-years-to-life sentence for his role in the crime as a member of the Weather Underground, which stole $1.6 million in cash from the armored car outside the Nanuet Mall near Nyack, N.Y.

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David Gilbert booking photo – October 21, 1981

The decision does not mean he will automatically be released from prison. Mr. Gilbert will be granted a parole hearing in the weeks to come, according to Monday’s announcement.

Mr. Gilbert is the second member of the group to seek relief from Mr. Cuomo. In 2016, the governor commuted the 75-year sentence of Judith Clark, praising her “exceptional strides in self-development” as an inmate. Mr. Cuomo’s actions also granted her a parole hearing, and she was eventually released.

Mr. Cuomo cited Mr. Gilbert’s work in AIDS education and prevention while in prison, and as a teacher and law library clerk.

“He has served 40 years of a 75-year sentence, related to an incident in which he was the driver, not the murderer,” Mr. Cuomo wrote on Twitter on Monday evening.

Mr. Gilbert’s upcoming parole hearing follows a campaign for his release that included his son, Chesa Boudin, who was an infant when his mother, Kathy Boudin, and Mr. Gilbert were convicted in the attack, and who in 2019 was elected the district attorney of San Francisco. Ms. Boudin was released in 2003 after receiving a 20-year sentence as part of a plea deal, and went on to become a professor at Columbia University.

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“I am overcome with emotion,” Mr. Boudin said in a statement on Monday night. “My heart is bursting, and it also aches for the families of the three victims. Although he never used a gun or intended for anyone to get hurt, my father’s crime caused unspeakable harm and devastated the lives of many separate families. I will continue to keep those families in my heart; I know they can never get their loved ones back.”

Killed in the robbery were Sgt. Edward O’Grady, Officer Waverly Brown and Peter Paige, a Brink’s guard. The commutation of Mr. Gilbert’s sentence, like Ms. Clark’s before him, outraged the law enforcement community in Rockland County.

“It’s absurd,” Arthur Keenan Jr., a retired detective with the Nyack Police Department, who was wounded in the shootout, said on Monday. He said Mr. Cuomo “is stabbing all of law enforcement in the back, and when I say all, I’m talking about federal, state, local — all across the whole country — because he’s a traitor.”