San Francisco defends Sanctuary status as Backlash is installed –

San Francisco defends Sanctuary status as Backlash is installed


SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – The attacks on San Francisco and other cities with similar immigration policies began moments after a jury acquitted a Mexican man of killing a woman on a popular dock, some calling for a boycott . of the city that fiercely defends its reputation as a refuge for all.

President Donald Trump called the verdict a "complete sham of justice" and Attorney General Jeff Sessions demanded that cities like San Francisco eliminate immigration policies that prohibit deportation efforts.

Twitter users resorted to hashtags #BoycottSanFrancisco and #kateswall to demand the construction of the US-Mexico border wall that Trump requested. Conservative politicians and celebrities such as former Alaska governor Sarah Palin and actor James Woods criticized the city as insecure.

City officials promised to back up their "sanctuary city" policy. It is what led José Inés García Zarate to be released from the San Francisco jail despite a federal request to detain him several weeks earlier Kate Steinle was shot dead in the back in 2015. He had been deported five times and was wanted for a sixth.

"San Francisco is and always will be a sanctuary city," said Ellen Cbade, a spokeswoman for Mayor Ed Lee.

Sanctuary policies improve public safety by allowing immigrants to cooperate with the police without fear, said state Sen. Scott Wiener, a former San Francisco Democratic supervisor.

"This family has gone through hell, but there are people, including our president, who continue to use this tragedy to demonize immigrants and slander immigrants suggesting they are all criminals, and that is not true," he said Friday. .

San Francisco was one of the first cities in the United States to establish a sanctuary law in 1989 as part of a national wave of local policies aimed at helping Central American refugees

. Since then, the city has always been a of the first to adopt some of the most immigrant-friendly policies in the entire country, and prides itself on serving as a safe haven for religious and gender minorities, who are not English speakers and people in the country illegally. Hundreds of other cities have similar immigration policies.

A judge did not allow immigration policy in the courtroom for the García Zárate trial.

San Francisco Deputy District Attorney Diana Garcia urged the jury to convict Garcia Zarate of first-degree murder, saying he had arrived at the dock with a weapon and a desire to hurt someone.

His lawyers argued that he found a weapon wrapped in cloth under a chair on the dock and fired when he picked it up.

The members of the jury rejected charges of murder and involuntary manslaughter, but condemned García Zárate for being a criminal in possession of a firearm, which carries a maximum sentence of three years in prison. It is likely that he served a sufficient amount behind bars considering his time in custody.

EE. UU The Immigration and Customs Service said it would "definitely eliminate" García Zarate from the country.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, then-candidate Trump and others singled out Steinle's death as reasons why the country's immigration laws should be stricter.

Trump called the verdict "shameful" and posted on Twitter that "Kate Steinle's killer came back and came back on Obama's weakly protected border, always committing crimes and being violent, but this information was not used in court"

"His exoneration is a complete parody of justice BUILD THE WALL," Trump tweeted.

García Zárate's convictions were related to immigration and drugs, but he had no history of violence.

Former President Barack Obama maintained the policy of his Republican predecessor to allow US immigration officials. Stop people suspected of living illegally in the country for up to 48 hours.

García Zárate had ended a federal prison sentence for illegal re-entry to the United States and had been transferred to the San Francisco prison in March 2015 to face a 20-year Charge for selling marijuana. The sheriff's department released him a few days after prosecutors withdrew the marijuana charge despite a request by federal officials to detain him for deportation.

Federal officials obtained an arrest warrant against García Zárate days after the shooting, which they said was a violation of his supervised release from prison for illegal re-entry. A judge revealed that order on Friday.

Michael Cardoza, a veteran attorney in the San Francisco Bay Area, said the prosecutor overstepped his case by requesting a conviction for first-degree murder, which would mean that García Zárate would attempt to kill Steinle despite the strong evidence the bullet bounced around 90 feet (27 meters) before hitting it.

Cardoza said that a better case could have been made to convince the jurors that Garcia Zarate had a "reckless disregard for human life" and condemn him for murder in the second degree.

Steinle's father, Jim, told the San Francisco Chronicle that "justice was done, but it was not fulfilled."

"We are amazed, sad and shocked … that's all," he said. in an interview described as the last of the family.


The Associated Press writer Sophia Tareen contributed this report from Chicago.

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