“He was a great man, always was,” Barbara Jimperson, 62, said of her Harlem neighbor after learning that cops had reclassified his death as a homicide more than 30 years after he was paralyzed in a robbery shooting.
Just vivacious, gregarious. He had integrity – that’s what it was
“Just vivacious, gregarious. He had integrity – that’s what it was.”
Hailey could often be found sitting in his wheelchair on the corner of East 129 Street and Lexington Avenue. Sometimes he’d move to his front stoop a few doors down, where he had lived for at least 35 years. When it got cold, he’d sit just inside the building’s door.
He was the mayor of this block
“Every day, he’d be out, and I’d be out here with him,” said Hailey’s friend Ricardo Cuevas. “He was the mayor of this block.”
Hailey’s life changed immeasurably May 26, 1983, when he was walking to his car at Macombs Road and Nelson Ave. in the Bronx, and was confronted by two thieves who shot him during a robbery.
Hailey, a neighborhood basketball legend and Army veteran, lost the use of his spindly legs. No arrests were ever made.
Hailey, 62, died in May from sepsis, a blood infection that developed from his paralysis. Sources said investigators have interviewed Hailey’s widow as part of the reclassified investigation.
If you have any information that can close this cold case call 9-1-1.