Progressive Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg recently suffered a defeat in court regarding his ongoing dispute over the extradition of a murder suspect to New York City. As previously reported, Bragg has been requesting that a prosecutor in Arizona extradite the suspect, who is wanted for murder in New York City.

However, Maricopa County District Attorney Rachel Mitchell, a Republican, has expressed concerns about releasing the alleged killer, who has a history of violence, back onto the streets. Instead, Mitchell plans to fully prosecute the suspect for multiple serious crimes committed in the Phoenix area before handing him over to New York authorities.

A judge in Arizona recently ruled in favor of Mitchell, refusing to extradite Raad Almansoori to New York City to face a murder charge in Manhattan, despite Bragg’s objections. Nevertheless, Bragg may still attempt to bypass Mitchell by filing a petition for Democrat Arizona Governor Katie Hobbs to intervene in the case and override the decisions of the local prosecutor and judge, thereby forcing Almansoori’s extradition to New York for prosecution.

The dispute between Bragg and Mitchell began last month when Almansoori, wanted for the fatal beating of a woman in a SoHo hotel, was arrested in Arizona. He was charged with attempted murder, sexual assault, and carjacking in separate incidents in the Phoenix area, during which he stabbed two women. Law enforcement authorities have also linked Almansoori to alleged violent crimes in Florida and Texas.

Upon his arrest on February 18, Almansoori not only confessed to the crimes in the Phoenix area but also admitted to the murder in New York. He even claimed that he was actively seeking another victim when he was apprehended. Currently, he remains in custody at the Maricopa County jail, facing numerous criminal charges and a $250,000 bond.

“We will not be agreeing to extradition. I’ve instructed my extradition attorneys not to agree to that,” Mitchell told reporters.

“And 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 and keep him in custody so that he can not be out doing this to individuals either in our state, county, or anywhere in the United States.”

Bragg was incensed by Mitchell’s choice and justified his position by emphasizing Manhattan’s minimal crime rates in contrast to Phoenix, all the while asserting that the “homicide case” he had against Almansoori “must be given precedence” over the minor criminal allegations the suspect was confronted with in Maricopa County.

“It is deeply disturbing to me that a member of my profession, a member of law enforcement, would choose to play political games in a murder case,” Bragg said at the time.

In the court hearing held on Monday, Court Commissioner Barbara Spencer granted Mitchell’s request for Almansoori’s non-extradition, as reported by Phoenix Fox affiliate KSAZ-TV.

The judge said, “Nothing can happen on the fugitive case other than there could be what’s called a governor’s directive, which is the document that would hold you instead of the governor’s warrant, or you would choose to sign a waiver.”

According to a report by The New York Post, Almansoori had the option to waive his rights and agree to be extradited to New York. However, he chose not to do so, resulting in his continued custody in Arizona. Unless DA Bragg can persuade the Arizona governor to intervene and enforce the extradition against Mitchell’s objections, Almansoori will remain in custody.

“Seeking justice for victims and survivors is our priority at the Manhattan D.A.’s Office,” a spokesperson for Bragg said in a statement.

“We do not stand on ceremony but prioritize the integrity of the process.

“We are proceeding as we do in each and every case involving an out-of-state arrest: Following the facts and the law to ensure justice is served.”

Despite the exaggerated language used by DA Bragg and others, Mitchell explicitly stated during the beginning of the extradition dispute, as reported by CBS News, that Almansoori would ultimately be held responsible in New York for his alleged violent actions. However, this would only occur after he had been held accountable for the crimes he committed and supposedly admitted to in the Phoenix area.

“I am protecting victims, not politicizing them or this case,” Mitchell said in response to Bragg’s accusations.

“Because of Mr. Bragg’s track record, I am concerned this defendant could be released, posing a serious threat to women in New York and Arizona, and any state in between.”

“To be very clear, I am not saying the defendant will never be tried in New York.

“I am saying he will face trial here first, then — once we have convicted him and have a lengthy sentence in place — he can then return to New York and be tried there,” she added.

“As I have stated before, a defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

“By doing it this way I am confident that, under Arizona law, the defendant will spend a very long time in prison.”