A woman who fell for a killer while serving as a juror at his trial — and tried to set him free — was among three people fatally shot amid the latest wave of gun violence across New York City, authorities confirmed Thursday.
Katherine Diop, 29, was gunned down in The Bronx late Wednesday night following a fight between her brother and another man, cops said.
Diop’s brother, 31, was also shot and wounded when the other man opened fire at East 194th Street and Marion Avenue in Fordham Manor, cops said.
The slaying came little more than five years after Diop made headlines when she was prosecuted over her stint serving jury duty in 2012 in a case that could have sent her away for seven years.
After being picked for a murder trial, Diop developed a crush on defendant Devon Thomas, who was charged with fatally shooting Abdoul Toure, an African immigrant and aspiring basketball player, in 2008.
When the case went to deliberations, Diop voted to acquit, resulting in a hung jury.
“She was hoping he could get off and [she could] start a relationship with him after he got out of jail,” the victim’s mom, Aissata Diane, said at the time.
Following the mistrial, Diop visited Thomas more than 30 times in jail and she even showed up in court to support him during his retrial, at which he was convicted of manslaughter and weapon possession.
Following the verdict, Diop was in the gallery with Thomas’s family when he turned and blew a kiss.
The Bronx District Attorney’s Office launched an investigation that found that Diop falsely claimed during jury selection for Thomas’ first trial to never have been arrested or been a defendant in court.
In fact, she was busted twice in 2011 in separate cases involving attempted burglary and theft of services, both of which resulted in plea bargains.
Diop was charged with two counts of perjury in 2013, and in 2016 she struck a deal for three years of probation.
But at her scheduled sentencing, it was revealed that she’d told a probation officer that she hadn’t “actually” been arrested, leading the judge to postpone the proceeding to decide “whether this promised sentence is going to apply.”
The judge ultimately let the deal stand and sentenced Diop to probation, the Bronx DA’s Office said Thursday.
Metro | New York Post