Jose Ines Garcia Zarate killed Kate Steinle back in July 2015. Today the verdict of his crime was announced and it was quite shocking.
Jurors decided, after 6 days of deliberating, that Zarate would walk.
The incident happened in San Francisco, CA, on Pier 14 where Steinle was walking with her dad and family friend when she was shot — collapsing into her father’s arms — and killed by Zarate.
The illegal immigrant had been released from jail just 3 month prior to the murder, and despite federal immigration authorities’ request to detain him, Zarate was released.
San Francisco is qualified as a ‘sanctuary city’, meaning local law enforcement are barred from cooperating with any federal immigration authorities.
Via Fox News: While Zarate’s immigration status is what brought the case into the national spotlight, jurors did not hear evidence about that, and it was not a factor in the trial.
After 12 days of testimony, dozens of witnesses and two days of closing arguments, the jury had to decide whether Steinle’s death was the result of an act of murder or a tragic accident.
Earlier in the day, the bailiff and court clerk were seen entering the jury room with a small yellow evidence bag before retreating with it a few minutes later.
A source inside the courtroom confirmed that the jury asked to see the gun used to shoot Steinle. Zarate and his defense team maintained the argument that the suspect found the stolen weapon on the pier that day and it “just fired.”
The gun belonged to a federal Bureau of Land Management ranger and was stolen from his parked car a week earlier.
What killed Steinle was a ricocheted bullet, which struck the concrete on the pier’s walkway. The illegal immigrant admitted to the shooting, but claimed it an accident.
Prosecution attorneys claimed a different story, telling jurors Zarate intentionally fired the gun at Steinle “playing his own secret version of Russian roulette.”