A cold-blooded cop killer who gunned down two of the NYPD’s Finest nearly half a century ago was paroled and will soon walk out of prison a free man, The Post has learned
Domestic terrorist Herman Bell — who fancies himself a “political prisoner” — was one of a trio of Black Revolutionary Army thugs who lured Officers Joseph Piagentini and Waverly Jones to a Harlem housing project with a phony 911 call back in 1971.
As the unsuspecting cops approached, the three opened fire for no apparent reason — except that their targets were cops.
Jones died instantly and Piagentini, who was already hit 12 times, begged for his life.
Instead, the heartless Bell finished him off with the cop’s own gun.
“Right now, I’m in shock,” the officer’s distraught widow Diane Piagentini told the Post, declining to comment further. “I just got the news this morning. I just can’t.”
Bell and the others escaped the death penalty only because capital punishment was illegal at the time.
Today, they’d be given life without parole — another option unavailable back then.
It was the seventh time since 2004 that the convicted cop had pleaded for parole — begging for the mercy he never showed his victims.
Bell argued that he should go free because he’d been a model prisoner, had earned a master’s degree — and learned to play the flute.
Bell never even admitted his guilt until 2012 after claiming he had been frames.
Past parole boards rejected his earlier bids, saying that freeing him “would deprecate the severity of this crime.”
But more lenient new guidelines say the risk of repeating a crime should be the major factor for parole.
It was unclear when Bell would be sprung.