SAN FRANCISCO – Jose Inez Garcia-Zarate pleaded guilty these days in federal court docket to being a felon in possession of a firearm and to being an alien unlawfully current in this state in possession of a firearm, announced United States Lawyer Stephanie M. Hinds and Bureau of Alcoholic beverages, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) Special Agent in Demand Patrick Gorman.
A federal grand jury indicted Jose Inez Garcia-Zarate on December 5, 2017. In accordance to the indictment, on July 1, 2015, Garcia-Zarate, who is a citizen of Mexico and reportedly 51 many years outdated, possessed a semi-automated pistol and several rounds of ammunition in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) (felon in possession of a firearm) and 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(5) (possession of a firearm by an alien unlawfully present in the United States). In a community submitting in the circumstance, the governing administration described that Garcia-Zarate was on Pier 14 of the Embarcadero in San Francisco on July 1, 2015. Also on the pier ended up Kathryn “Kate” Steinle, who was 32, her father James Steinle, and Frances “Kaye” Williams, a relatives close friend. The a few were being sightseeing. At around 6:30 p.m., Garcia-Zarate possessed and fired a loaded semi-computerized pistol. The bullet strike Kathryn Steinle in her back again, killing her. At the time of the taking pictures, Garcia-Zarate was a convicted felon and illegally in the United States, obtaining formerly been deported. He was also on federal supervised release from a 2011 Texas conviction.
On November 30, 2017, a prosecution by the San Francisco County District Attorney’s Place of work resulted in a jury convicting Garcia-Zarate of just one condition violation – being a felon in possession of a firearm in violation of California point out legislation – and acquitting him of homicide fees. On August 30, 2019, a California state Court of Appeals courtroom overturned Garcia-Zarate’s conviction based on the failure of the point out demo courtroom to instruct the jury on the state’s affirmative protection of momentary possession. The ruling had no legal impact on the federal prosecution, which experienced previously been initiated.
Garcia-Zarate created his initial appearance in federal court docket to deal with federal firearm prices on January 8, 2018, right away pursuing his release from condition custody. A federal jury demo set in January 2020 was delayed when the Court docket purchased Garcia-Zarate to be evaluated for mental competency to stand demo. Pursuing competency proceedings occurring through 2020 and 2021, a alter of plea hearing was established for today.
At today’s listening to, Zarate-Garcia pleaded guilty to the two prices in the federal indictment against him, devoid of a plea agreement. He admitted that on July 1, 2015, he was on San Francisco Embarcadero Pier 14 and possessed a semi-automated pistol loaded with 8 rounds. He admitted he understood he was an alien that was unlawfully and illegally in the United States at the time and that he experienced previously been convicted of a felony, which includes the felony of Unlawful Re-Entry Right after Deportation for which he expended more than a calendar year in federal prison.
Garcia-Zarate’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for June 6, 2022, at 1 p.m. in advance of United States District Judge Vince Chhabria in San Francisco. Garcia-Zarate remains in custody pending the sentencing listening to.
Each individual of the two violations of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g) to which Garcia-Zarate pleaded guilty has a utmost statutory penalty of 10 years in jail adopted by 3 many years of supervised launch. Nonetheless, any sentence will be imposed by the Court docket only immediately after thought of the U.S. Sentencing Pointers and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.
The scenario is staying prosecuted by Assistant United States Lawyers Eric Cheng and Kevin Barry, with support from Madeline Wachs. The prosecution is the consequence of an investigation by ATF and the San Francisco Law enforcement Department.