Mexican acquitted in San Francisco pier shooting faces new gun, immigration charges

08 December, 2017, 02:08 | Author: Jason Torres
  • Calls for 'Kate's Wall' emerge after Mexican immigrant's acquittal in Steinle killing

Officials filed new immigration and gun charges against Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, just days after he was acquitted of murder and manslaughter in the Steinle case.

Garcia Zatate now faces felony charges for possessing a gun and bullets and for being "an illegally present alien in possession of a firearm and ammunition", according to a press release from the Department of Justice's Northern District of California. A San Francisco jury convicted him of a state charge of felon in possession of a firearm after acquitting him of murder and assault for the July 1, 2015 shooting.

Under a sanctuary city law, San Francisco authorities released him from custody three months before the shooting, instead of turning him over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Zarate was acquitted of first and second degree murder and involuntary manslaughter on Thursday.

Garcia Zarate was accused of gunning down 32-year-old Steinle, a Pleasanton native, on Pier 14 in San Francisco's Embarcadero neighborhood.

The alien had been deported five times and was wanted for a sixth deportation when Steinle was fatally shot in the back while walking with her father on the pier.

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That case drew national attention after then-candidate Donald Trump raised it as a justification for his proposed crackdown on illegal immigration and sanctuary cities. But the jury did convict him of being a felon with a gun.

George Gascón, district attorney for the city and county of San Francisco, would not comment on the developments but talked to reporters about the recent trial.

Garcia-Zarate is a seven-time convicted felon and had been deported from the USA five times.

The case also caught the attention of presidential candidate Donald Trump a year ago, who used it to highlight crime committed by undocumented immigrants during his campaign.

CNN reached out to Garcia Zarate's attorneys on Tuesday but didn't receive an immediate response.

President Trump has demanded funding for the border wall, but Congress has yet to agree to provide beyond the $20 million allotted for prototypes and related infrastructure.

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