Outgoing NY Governor Andrew Cuomo has been blasted by victims’ groups for commuting the murder sentence of San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin’s dad over an armored car robbery that killed three.
Cuomo announced Monday evening that he was commuting the prison sentences of David Gilbert, 76, Greg Mingo, 68, Robert Ehrenberg, 62, Ulysses Boyd, 66, and Paul Clark, 59.
All five have murder convictions, with Gilbert – Boudin’s father – the only killer still incarcerated with no possibility of parole over a deadly 1981 hold-up of a Brinks cash truck, that left a security guard and two cops dead.
He served as a getaway driver for the crime, with Cuomo saying Monday his crime ‘related to an incident in which he was the driver, not the killer.’
Gilbert was convicted of three counts of second-degree murder in 1983 over the killings, with Cuomo’s commutation meaning his 75 year minimum sentence has been lowered to 40 years time served. Although Cuomo said he had commuted Boudin’s sentence, he added that the case had been referred to the parole board, for ‘potential release,’ meaning he will not be freed immediately.
Cuomo ordered the release of the other four men whose sentences he also commuted.
Boudin shared his joy on Twitter upon learning about his father’s commutation, writing: ‘My heart is bursting. On the eve of my first child’s birth, my dad – who’s been in prison nearly my entire life – was granted clemency. He never intended harm, yet his crime devastated many families,’ he added.
But the clemency was received with backlash from elected officials in Rockland and family of the victims.
The Rockland County Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association has opposed to previous attempts of clemency for Gilbert.
State Assemblyman Michael Lawler said the commutation was a ‘disgusting betrayal to the people of Rockland County, the families of Peter Paigere, Edward O’Grady, and Waverly Brown, and law enforcement officers everywhere.’
And Rockland County Executive Ed Day had even harsher words for Cuomo – accusing the governor of ‘debasing his office.’
Andrew Cuomo has commuted the sentence of terrorist killer David Gilbert – the father of San Francisco DA Chesa Boudin, pictured, left, with his father in an undated photo
He told LoHud: ‘I did not think that Andrew Cuomo could debase his office or this state any more than he did,’ a reference to Cuomo’s resignation over claims he sexually harassed 11 women.
‘My thoughts are with the families of the victims of the Brinks robbery and every person of Rockland County who has insulted by the governor today.’
This October will mark the 40th anniversary of the 1981 Brink’s robbery, in which Gilbert and his wife, Kathy Boudin were involved.
Kathy Boudin fired the shots that killed the two cops while fleeing the scene. She struck a plea deal that saw her admit felony murder in exchange for a 20 year sentence, and was released in 2003. She is now an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s School of Social work in New York.
Gilbert was a member of 1960s far-left revolutionary group the Weather Underground. He and his cronies would hold up Brinks trucks filled with cash taken from stores to fund their ideology.
Chesa Boudin, son of David Gilbert, shared on Twitter his joy after Cuomo granted his father clemency. He addressed the family of the victims heartbreak, but said his ‘heart is bursting’
Boudin was just 14 months old when his parents, David Gilbert and Kathy Boudin were arrested for the 1981 Brink’s robbery that left two cops and one security guard dead
David Gilbert and wife Kathy Boudin – who was convicted of murder after shooting and killing two cops during the same 1981 robbery, only to be freed from jail in 2003
Boudin is facing a recall as San Francisco DA over claims he is too soft on crime, and advocated for his dad’s release from jail
In this May 1985 photo provided by Chesa Boudin, his father, David Gilbert, makes fists as his father holds him during a prison visit at Auburn Correctional Facility in Auburn
The heist which landed him in jail started at the Nanuet Mall in upstate New York, when security guard Peter Paige was killed during the robbery. His colleague Joseph Trombino was seriously wounded, and later died in the 9/11 terror attacks.
Police later stopped the robbery’s getaway drivers in nearby Nyack, with Nyack Police Sergeant Edward O’Grady and Officer Waverly ‘Chipper’ Brown both killed.
Two other cops were badly injured at the roadblock set up to try and catch Gilbert and his fellow robbers.
Gilbert requested clemency in March, and was backed by his son – who faces a recall in San Francisco over claims he is soft on crime – as well as Kathy.
When Gilbert and Kathy Boudin were arrested, their son, Chesa Boudin, who would go on to become San Francisco District Attorney, was just 14 months old.
Boudin was adopted by fellow members of the Weather Underground, who raised him in Chicago.
Other elected officials in Rockland Country have also expressed their solidarity with the families of the victims.
County Legislator Charles Faciglia told lohud that someone like Gilbert who was guilty of a ‘heinous crime like murder deserves life in prison.’
In the tweet, Cuomo disclosed the names, ages, and convictions of the sic men he granted commutations and pardons to
Officer Waverly Brown was one of the fatal victims of the 1981 Brink’s robbery, for which David Gilbert was convicted
Officer David O’Grady was also killed by shots fired from Kathy Boudin, Gilbert’s wife and mother of San Francisco DA Chesa Boudin
The sister of late officer O’Grady (left) has said that she is disappointed and saddened by Cuomo’s decision, while elected officials in Rockland County have also shown their commendation
Peter Paigere was a security guard who lost his life in the 1981 Brink’s robbery
Mary Crowley, the sister of one of the killed cops, said she was saddened and disappointed by Cuomo’s decision.
While in prison, Gilbert also worked as a a student tutor, law library clerk, paralegal assistant, teacher’s aide, and an aide for various additional facility programs. Parole board will oversee his potential release.
He was granted the commutation for his contributions to AIDS education and prevention programs, the Gov said.
Cuomo said: ‘I am granting clemency to 6 people. These individuals have shown remorse, rehabilitation and commitment to their communities. I thank all the volunteer attorneys representing clemency applicants for their dedication and service to justice.
Commutations are intended to reward prisoners who have shown good behavior, or to reduce sentences that are too harsh for the crimes committed.
They are different from pardons because the sentence is shortened instead of the conviction being removed.
In the state level, only governors are entitled to grant commutations and they can’t be revoked, unless they have been grated on the basis of inaccurate evidence.
The governor will step down from his position at 11:59pm EST Monday night after being accused of sexual harassment by 11 women. He denies their claims.
Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul will replace him.
She is scheduled to be sworn in at 12.01am Tuesday.
Cuomo announced two weeks ago that he will resign from office rather than endure a likely impeachment battle in the state legislature over sexual harassment allegations.
David Gilbert, 76, has served 40 years of the 75-years-to-life after he was convicted of three counts of second-degree murder and four counts of first-degree robbery in 1983
Ulysses Boyd served 35 years of a 50 years-to-life sentence. While incarcerated, Boyd served as a clerk for the facility branch of the NAACP and as a DOCCS transitional services coordinator for over a decade. Upon release, Boyd will be reunited with his wife
Greg Mingo assisted over a thousand of other incarcerated people after earning his GED and a paralegal certification, and taught an eight-week legal research
The other five men granted commutations or a pardon by Cuomo were…
Lawrence Penn, 51, admitted a fraud charge in 2015, but was pardoned by Cuomo on his last day in office
A pardon was also granted to Lawrence Penn, 51, who admitted a fraud charge in 2015.
Penn, the founder of a New York private equity firm called Camelot Acquisitions, admitted to have spent $9.3million he stole from investors in jewelry and an expensive car.
The West Point graduate took a plea deal that allowed him to serve three years.
Penn allegedly created a scheme with pal Michael Ewers-who was also convicted-in which they siphoned money to a shell company.
The diverted cash was made to look like service payments but in reality went to credit card payments and other luxuries.
Explaining the decision to pardon Penn, Cuomo said: ‘A West Point graduate and a veteran, Penn continues to be active in his community and a full pardon will allow him to fully re-engage in a meaningful way with society.’
Greg Mingo has assisted over a thousand of other incarcerated people after earning his GED and a paralegal certification, and taught an eight-week legal research
Robert Mingo served 39-and-a-half years of the 50 years-to-life he was convicted to.
He was involved in a 1980 double-robbery in Queens, in which a couple was killed.
Mingo always maintained his innocence and had an alibi witness who was not called to testify by his lawyer.
A judge who used the N-word just five month after Mingo’s trial convicted him to two life sentences in 1982.
Mingo’s commutation was given on the grounds that he assisted over a thousand of other incarcerated people after earning his GED and a paralegal certification. He also taught an eight-week legal research while in prison.
He now plans to work as a counselor to help individuals dealing with addiction, anger, and domestic violence.
Robert Ehrenberg earned an associate’s degree from SUNY Sullivan and a Bachelor of Science degree from St. Thomas Aquinas College while he was in prison
Ehrenberg earned an associate’s degree from SUNY Sullivan and a Bachelor of Science degree from St. Thomas Aquinas College while he was in prison.
‘I’ll never be able to forgive or forget my terrible actions and can only try to atone for them through my actions during my 50-years-to-life prison sentence,’ Ehrenberg wrote in an op-ed for Times Union in 2020.
He has worked as a tutor, designed an 16-week algebra course, and helped charitable groups for causes like childhood cancer research, animal rescue and sanctuary efforts.
Ehrenberg served 28-and-a-half years of the 50-and-a-half sentence he got after he killed a man in a robbery.
Announcing his release, Cuomo said: ‘Mingo also became a dedicated and respected peer counselor—founding programs focused on fatherhood, family relationships, and domestic violence and abuse—and has facilitated thousands of hours of counseling programs.
‘Upon release, Mingo plans to live with family and work as a full-time counselor helping individuals struggling with addiction, anger, and domestic violence.’
Ulysses Boyd, 66, was convicted of one count of second-degree murder and two counts of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon for an incident in which he was not the gunman
Boyd, 66, was convicted of one count of second-degree murder and two counts of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
He served 35 years of a 50 years-to-life sentence.
He worked as a clerk for the NAACP branch on the facility where he was imprisoned and as a DOCCS transitional services coordinator for over a decade.
The statement commuting Boyd’s sentence read: ‘While incarcerated, Boyd served as a clerk for the facility branch of the NAACP and as a DOCCS transitional services coordinator for over a decade. Upon release, Boyd will be reunited with his wife.’
Paul Clark, 59, has served 40 years of a 58 years and 4 months-to-life sentence. While incarcerated, Clark earned a GED degree, an associate’s degree, and a variety of vocational certificates. Upon release, Clark will be reunited with his wife
Clark has served the most years from the group of men- 40 of his 58 years and 4 months-to-life sentence.
He has also earned a GED degree, an associate’s degree, and a variety of vocational certificates.
Clark was convicted of three counts of second-degree murder, one count of second-degree attempted murder, and one count of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
He maintained he was innocent of one of the murders he had been accused of, the killing of a 60-year-old cabby. Clark’s prosecutor was later convicted for committing eight murders for a mafia mob.
Clark did admit to have killed a 17-year-old when he was 18 at a block party.
Cuomo said that a pardon will ‘allow him to fully re-engage in a meaningful way with society.’
Lat week, Gov Cuomo also granted clemency to 10 people, among them a man whose unsuccessful campaign for exoneration in a 1998 killing was championed by actor Martin Sheen.