On Monday, former New York Police Department officer Gilberto Valle was released after 21 months in jail for allegedly plotting, killing, and eating young women. He was fired from his job after his conviction.
It was Valle’s wife Kathleen Mangan who found conversations and disturbing photos that Valle kept on their computer. Defense lawyer Julia Gatto declined to comment on Valle’s current relationship with his ex-wife and their six-year-old daughter.
According to Judge Paul Gardephe, there was a lack of evidence to support the jury’s guilty verdict. Valle’s lawyers said that Valle’s plots were just fantasy online roles and that he never harmed anyone in real life. They said that their client is guilty of having unconventional thoughts. “We don’t put people in jail for their thoughts. We are not the thought police,” they said.
— The Independent (@Independent) July 1, 2014
Prosecutors, on the other hand, said that Valle was not just fantasizing and that he did actions to carry out his plans. In an online conversation Valle had with another man, he said, “I want her to experience being cooked alive. She’ll be trussed up like a turkey… She’ll be terrified, screaming, and crying.”
Valle was convicted in 2013 on a conspiracy charge and a misdemeanor count for illegally accessing a law enforcement database.
Outside the court, Valle apologized to the public. “I want to take the opportunity to apologize to everyone who’s been hurt, shocked, and offended by my infantile actions,” he said. Valle also thanked his lawyers, family, staff, and his fellow inmates at the Metropolitan Correctional Center who took care of him. “I’ll never forget them and love them,” he said.
— Lisa Evers (@LisaEvers) July 1, 2014
Valle was freed from jail on a $100,000 bond and was ordered to stay at home with his mother. He also has to go to counseling and has limited use of the Internet. “I’m tired. I just want to go home and spend some time with my family,” he said after being released.
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