An outraged New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York Police Commissioner Bill Bratton blasted a court program that freed a one-time PCP addict with a 16-year rap sheet, leaving him free to kill police officer Randolph Holder, the New York Daily News reports. Not only did murder suspect Tyrone (Peanut) Howard dodge a six-year prison term after convincing a judge, he repeatedly eluded arrest for seven weeks after a Sept. 1 shooting. “The perpetrator involved here was obviously a hardened and violent criminal,” de Blasio said. “He should not have been on the streets.” An irate Bratton blasted the decision to spare the recidivist drug dealer with at least 23 arrests, including one for the 2009 shooting of an 11-year-old boy, from jail time. Howard, 30, was instead steered to a drug diversion program, despite the Manhattan district attorney's demand for the six-year sentence. The accused cop killer was arraigned last night on first-degree murder and robbery charges, surrounded by a sea of cops and furious family members. Howard did not enter a plea as he was ordered held without bail. The slain cop's partner managed to wound the suspect in the leg, police said.
Cops said Howard pulled a .40-caliber handgun with a 30-shot clip and fired a single bullet into Holder’s forehead Tuesday night. “If ever there was a candidate not to be diverted, it was this guy,” Bratton said of Howard. “He's a poster boy for not being diverted. His whole life has been about an escalation of crime … and now we have the murder of a New York City police officer.” Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Edward McLaughlin, while calling the killing of Holder “an absolute tragedy,” defended his decision to spare Howard from jail. “I don't get a crystal ball when I get the robe,” McLaughlin told the Daily News. “I know I made the right decision. …I'm confident it's accurate and appropriate.”