Yesterday, in a courthouse in San Francisco, a jury ruled that Jose Ines Garcia Zarate was not guilty of intentionally killing Kate Steinle in July, 2015. They did find Zarate guilty of being in possession of a firearm. This means he could face up to three years in prison. The jury had to base their decision on whether or not Zarate meant to kill Steinle. They were unaware of Zarate’s criminal background and that he was an illegal immigrant.
Zarate wrote a confession saying he was sitting on a chair where he found a gun wrapped in a t-shirt underneath. When Zarate picked it up, it accidentally fired. The bullet hit Steinle in the back while she was walking with her father along a pier nearby. There was strong evidence that the bullet had ricocheted about 90 feet before hitting Steinle. This evidence made the jury believe it was an accident. The gun had been reported stolen from a different person.
Many people are upset about the fact that Zarate was released from jail 3 months before Steinle was shot. They feel this could have been prevented if he was deported. He was protected by the city of San Francisco, which is a sanctuary city that protects illegal immigrants from being deported. President Trump furiously criticized the decision on Twitter. The Immigration Customs Enforcement have stated they will deport Zarate as soon as he serves any remaining prison time.