NY parole board to release cop killer from prison

Larchmont Police Officer Arthur DeMatte

A man who killed a police officer in Westchester is going to be released from prison on parole.

Larchmont Police Officer Arthur DeMatte was shot and killed with his own gun after trying to rescue a man from railroad tracks in 1976.

Anthony Blanks, 69, was convicted of first-degree murder and criminal possession of a weapon in 1978 for the veteran officer's killing. He was sentenced to 25 years to life.

Blanks could leave Sing Sing Correctional Facility as early as Oct. 18 after being granted parole.  He has been eligible for parole since 2001 but had remained behind bars after being denied parole multiple times.

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DeMatte had served with the Larchmont Police Department for 20 years. He was survived by his wife and four children.

At a news conference marking the 46th anniversary of his killing, DeMatte's wife and daughter spoke out about Blanks' upcoming parole.

"A was numb," his widow Alice DeMatte said.  "And I hope he does not hurt anyone else."

The Larchmont Police Benevolent Association, which has long opposed granting Blanks parole, was outraged.

"The NYS Parole Board is sending the message that cop killers have a place in our society," the group said in a statement.  "This is unacceptable.

A Wednesday evening vigil was placed for a memorial park in Larchmont that was named in honor of DeMatte.