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originally posted by: muzzleflash
originally posted by: Templeton
This isn't a good thing if true. The fed should not be relitigating this case. They should deport him and build the wall to keep him out.
I don't know if they are re-litigating it yet.
It seems unclear what the warrant is for exactly.
I think they are just throwing the book at him hoping something/anything will stick.
A Reader investigation found ten cases since 2011 where police killed a civilian in Chicago and charged an accomplice with the murder.
Jeopardy only attaches to prosecutions of the same criminal acts by the same sovereign. 43 Thus a state may prosecute individuals for a crime which they stood trial for in federal court. Federal authorities may also prosecute individuals for crimes they stood trial for in state court. The double jeopardy defense does not apply to either of these actions.
Example: Officers of the Los Angeles Police Department, were tried and found not guilty of assault on Rodney King in Ventura County Superior Court in 1991.
Some of those same officers were later charged and convicted in federal court for violating Rodney King's civil rights.
The federal charges and convictions arose out of the same incident as the previous state case in Ventura County Superior Court. However, because the state of California and the federal government are separate sovereigns, double jeopardy did not bar the prosecution of those officers in federal court.
But after police presented him with what Lt. Anthony Ravano, the lead investigating officer in the homicide, called “fake evidence,” Garcia Zarate admitted to sitting on the pier, shooting Steinle and throwing the gun off the pier.
In one exchange with homicide investigator Sgt. Chris Canning, Garcia Zarate said the shooting was both accidental and intentional. Garcia Zarate spoke to the officers in Spanish through police translator Officer Martin Covarrubias.
“Did you mean to do it?” Canning asked.
“No,” Zarate responded.
“Was it an accident?”
“But you made the decision to pull the trigger, correct?”
“What did you think was going to happen after you pulled the trigger?”
“That I was not going to be able to keep it in my hand because it was big and fat.”
Defense attorney Matt Gonzalez told reporters after court that police pushed and led Garcia Zarate into his answers during the interrogation that lasted until nearly 6 a.m.
“The fact that very skilled and experienced and educated interrogators can get a second-grade [educated] Mexican immigrant to adopt what they are saying, like that Kate Steinle was five-feet away when the gun discharged, that doesn’t make it true,” Gonzalez said.
Ravano said in court that investigators lied to Garcia Zarate about witnesses who saw the shooting, gunshot residue recovered from his hands, the handgun they pulled from the water and a DNA match connecting him to the weapon.
Garcia Zarate said he was homeless, collecting bottles and cans for work, when he found the gun wrapped in a heavy rag or shirt on the pier.
“When I was walking along, there was a rag and stuff and I stepped on it and then it fired,” Garcia Zarate said in Spanish, according to the translation from Covarrubias. “I was trying to prevent the gun from firing by itself.”
The only motive for the shooting that Garcia Zarate offered to police was that he was aiming at a sea lion. When asked whether Steinle made him mad, spoke to him or looked at him in a bad way, he said “No.”
He also told police that he was born Sept. 1, 1863.
Speaking largely through a police interpreter, Garcia Zarate first denied being near the scene of the shooting, saying he was instead sitting near the ballpark eating cookies or crackers, and gave police a false name and date of birth.
He also declared early in the interview that he is Colombian and would pay for a lawyer.
As the interrogation progressed into the early hours of the next day, Garcia Zarate acknowledged his involvement, but still gave several versions of events.
"When I got there, I was walking along, there was a rag and I stepped on it and it fired and then I picked it up," the interpreter translated him as saying.
A short time later, Garcia Zarate agreed twice with police when they asked if he pulled the trigger, but when they asked him again why he threw the gun in the water he responded through the interpreter "Because the gun was firing by itself."
Giving frequent answers of "I don't know," Garcia Zarate never indicated a motive for the shooting, saying that Steinle had not done anything to make him want to shoot her and indicating that he had not known that he shot her. At one point, in response to repeated questions, he told police he was shooting at a sea lion, or a fish.
Outside of court today Matt Gonzalez, chief attorney for the public defender's office, noted that Garcia Zarate had willingly agreed to statements suggested by police that later turned out to be false, such as when he said he was only 5 feet away from Steinle when she was shot. He was, in fact, around 90 feet from her, evidence shows.
While testimony had yet to establish what happened on the pier, Lopez-Sanchez said in a jailhouse interview with KGO-TV that he had found a gun — a .40-caliber pistol that had been stolen from a federal agent in a car burglary four days prior — wrapped in a T-shirt under a bench.
It went off, he said, after he took sleeping pills he found in a trash can. His attorney, Matt Gonzalez, has said the evidence in the case points to an accidental shooting.
A witness account and surveillance video from a nearby fire station led investigators to believe that Lopez-Sanchez had thrown the gun into the bay, Ravano said, and police divers were able to recover it in the water.
Ravano said Lopez-Sanchez had given officers a series of different names. When he was brought to the homicide unit for questioning, he fell asleep, Ravano said.
Steinle’s alleged shooter, Francisco Sanchez, had five previous convictions for re-entry after deportation, according to court records, and seven prior felony convictions.
Steinle was strolling arm-in-arm with her father, Jim Steinle, on Pier 14 the evening of July 1. Shots rang out, and a bullet hit her in the back, according to prosecutors. She was pronounced dead at a hospital shortly thereafter.
Lopez-Sanchez told KGO-TV that he found a gun wrapped in a T-shirt on the ground near a bench that evening and that it accidentally fired three times when he touched it. He said he kicked the gun off the pier and walked away, unaware anyone had been shot.
The weapon turned out to have been stolen from a U.S. Bureau of Land Management vehicle.
San Francisco police criminalist and ballistics expert Gerald Andrew Smith took the stand Wednesday and held up for the judge to see in court the black Sig Sauer P239 .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol, that was recovered from the San Francisco Bay near Pier 14 the day after the homicide.
Smith processed the loaded pistol, which later was discovered stolen from a Bureau of Land Management ranger during an auto burglary, and determined that one of the bullets had been fired.
He said that upon examining the one spent bullet retrieved from Steinle's body during the autopsy, it is his opinion that the signatures of the bullet matched the test bullet he fired from the pistol.
Smith noted that the bullet is damaged significantly on one side, leading him to believe that it likely ricocheted after being fired, but
before striking Steinle.
"There was no mechanical malfunction," Smith said, explaining that this firearm is commonly used by law enforcement officials because of its reliability.
San Francisco police Inspector John Evans, who was tasked with investigating the crime scene, said that on July 5, investigators located a strike mark on the cement pier.
Garcia Zarate faced a charge of second-degree murder, but jurors also were allowed to consider first-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter convictions.
Juan Francisco López-Sánchez (or Francisco Sánchez; given name José Inez García Zárate), of Guanajuato, Mexico, had been deported from the U.S. a total of five times, most recently in 2009.