New evidence clears Hicksville man of armed robbery charge

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The Nassau District Attorney's Office cited new evidence as it dropped all charges against a Hicksville man who had been accused in an armed robbery. 

Alberto Alvarez was arrested in March and was facing a 25-year sentence for allegedly pulling a gun on a 35-year old man walking in Westbury.

The assistant district attorney told the judge inside a Mineola courtroom that DNA test results proved that Alvarez did not own a hat lost by the robber at the crime scene. She also said that they now had evidence from the phone company that Alvarez's cellphone was not near the Westbury location at the time of the robbery. 

Alvarez's attorney Jan Goldman says the district attorney's office took his client's claims of innocence seriously and worked with him, but he says the Nassau County Police Department needs to be more careful.

"I think they arrested him because he's Spanish and looked like the right guy," she said. 

His attorney says police showed a photo of Alvarez from an earlier marijuana-related arrest to the victim. The victim identified Alvarez as the robber, but allegedly told police he was only 80 percent certain.

In court, the prosecutor said that the Nassau County Police Department made the initial arrest based on that identification, an independent witness and an anonymous tip to police about other similar robberies in the area. The Nassau County Police Department did not respond to questions about the arrest.

"I'm just thankful to have my name cleared up," Alvarez told News 12.

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