A tourist at a hotel across the street from where the shooting occurred took photos of suspect Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez walking away from the scene, according to prosecutors.
A San Francisco Superior Court judge is weighing whether prosecutors have enough evidence to proceed to trial with murder charges.
Sanchez has pleaded not guilty. “This gun could not just be sitting on a table and all of a sudden, due to some malfunction, go off”.
In one of the world’s most photographed cities, a tourist’s smartphone snapshot helped police arrest a suspect about 55 minutes after Kate Steinle was fatally shot in the back during a stroll with her father on a San Francisco pier.
However, authorities believe Sanchez may have obtained the gun by stealing it from the vehicle belonging to a federal agent. Sanchez is due in court on Tuesday, August 25, 2015, for a preliminary hearing to determine whether there is enough evidence to try him on a murder charge in the July slaying of 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle.
A different witness told police the suspect discarded an object off the pier that fell into San Francisco Bay with a plop, in the vicinity where divers later recovered a firearm linked to a bullet removed from Steinle. Most major cities in the United States are designated as “sanctuary cities” including San Diego, Los Angeles, Miami, Houston, Detroit, and Chicago.
Following the incident, the country’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) reprimanded San Francisco for not adhering to its warnings to deport Sanchez back to Mexico again.
Lopez-Sanchez said he found the Sig Sauer.40-caliber pistol wrapped in a t-shirt under a bench on San Francisco’s pier 14.
Jim Steinle has since traveled to Washington D.C.to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee and to urge lawmakers to abolish local policies of ignoring federal immigration requests for cooperation with deportations.
The second day of a preliminary hearing will continue Wednesday after three police detectives testified Tuesday.
San Francisco and other cities and counties ignore requests from federal authorities to detain jail inmates who are thought to be in the country illegally.
The town’s sheriff, Ross Mirkarimi, has defended Sanchez’s April 15 launch, saying federal officers knew metropolis regulation requires a warrant or courtroom order to detain an inmate for deportation, however they didn’t acquire one for Sanchez. But leading politicians, including top Democrats such as California Sen.
Lopez-Sanchez, 45, shackled at the waist and wearing an orange sweatshirt and trousers, sat quietly as a Spanish translator spoke softly to him during the hearing Tuesday. Dianne Feinstein and presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton, said Lopez-Sanchez should have been detained.
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