Judge: Released inmate seeking heart transplant should remain free

A judge ruled today that a Hempstead woman previously released from behind bars should remain out of jail as she seeks a heart transplant.Diane McCloud

MINEOLA - A judge ruled today that a Hempstead woman previously released from behind bars should remain out of jail as she seeks a heart transplant.Diane McCloud didn't know what her future would hold as she walked into the court today. In April, a judge threatened to lock her up again when he found out she had been smoking cigarettes, for which she was removed from the heart transplant program. McCloud was given until today to quit smoking. Leonard Isaacs, McCloud's attorney, presented a letter from a doctor saying his client had enrolled in a program to help her kick the habit and was awaiting a call back from Mount Sinai Medical Center to be screened for its heart transplant program.The judge ruled that McCloud would remain free until at least mid-August, when she'll have to appear in court again. McCloud was convicted of stealing $3,800 worth of merchandise from the Westbury Target. Once she gets a new heart, she will be resentenced.

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