David Ranta, convicted of killing a Brooklyn rabbi in 1991, was released after 23 years in prison.
On Thursday, the 58-year-old found comfort in his family’s arms after judge Judge Miriam Cyrulnik released him and apologized.
“Sir, you are free to go,” the judge stated following prosecutor’s announcement that they supported tossing out the 1991 conviction.
Judge Cyrulnik stated, “To say I’m sorry for what you’ve endured would be an understatement. … But I say it anyway.”
Ranta’s daughter is now 25-year-old and pregnant; she was only two when he was locked up. Unfortunately, his parents died while he was incarcerated.
“I’m overwhelmed,” Ranta said to reporters outside the courtroom in downtown Brooklyn, carrying a purple laundry bag with all his belongings. “Right now, I feel like I’m underwater, swimming.”
Ranta’s sister, Beverly Maccheroni, 51, said the family supported him through the years he spent in a maximum-security prison outside of Buffalo.
“There are no words, no words. I don’t know how he would start over,” said the Staten Island woman. “I’m hoping he comes and stays with me for a while, because I have the biggest house where everybody can come and stay.”