ILLEGAL sentenced to time served on gun charges linked to 2015 killing of Kate Steinle on San Francisco pier

CBS NEWS:

A California federal judge on Monday sentenced the Mexican man acquitted of murder in the 2015 shooting death of a woman on a San Francisco pier to the seven years he’s already spent in jail — bringing to a legal close the case that ignited a national firestorm over immigration, crime and sanctuary cities.

Jose Inez Garcia Zarate was in the U.S. illegally when Kate Steinle, 32, was fatally shot along a crowded Pier 14 where she was walking with her father and a family friend. He faces deportation and U.S. District Judge Vince Chhabria told him to never return to the U.S.

The shooting shocked a country already divided over immigration and fueled Donald Trump’s successful campaign for president. Trump called for a crackdown on unlawful immigration and the sanctuary cities and states — including San Francisco and California — that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration authorities.

Garcia Zarate admitted to firing the gun on July 4, 2015, but said he found it under a bench and didn’t know what it was when he picked it up because it was wrapped in a T-shirt. The gun fired accidentally after he picked it up, he said. Officials said the bullet ricocheted off the ground and hit Steinle.

He was acquitted of homicide charges by a San Francisco jury in 2017 but faced firearms charges in federal court. In March, he pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm and a person illegally in the country in possession of a firearm.

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