Local NBC affiliate WNBC reports:
A federal judge moved closer Tuesday to freeing a Brooklyn rabbi's convicted killer after state prosecutors admitted that they had withheld evidence during his 1995 murder trial. Federal Judge Dora Irizarry chided the Brooklyn District Attorney's office and over their objections, ordered a rare evidentiary hearing Wednesday that could free Jabbar Collins, 37, and bar prosecutors from retrying him for the rabbi's slaying. "What is troubling is that back in 2006 the DA's office didn't take that extra step," said the judge, criticizing Brooklyn prosecutors for failing to thoroughly investigate defense claims of prosecutorial misconduct years ago. Prosecutors did admit a crucial mistake: not revealing back in 1995 that a key witness against Collins briefly recanted. He went on to testify against Collins, who was sentenced to 34 years to life in prison for fatally shooting Rabbi Abraham Pollack during a 1995 robbery in Williamsburg.