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Steinle Zarate


On Thursday, the verdict in the highly publicized trial of Kate Steinle’s accused killer was met with dismay by many as the five-times deported Jose Ines Garcia Zarate was acquitted of all murder and manslaughter charges. Zarate was on trial for shooting Steinle as she walked next to her father along Pier 14 in San Francisco in July 2015.

In what they said will be their last interview, Steinle’s family was heartbroken over the verdict, yet seek a little comfort in that the whole ordeal is now over.

“We just want to get this over with and move on with our lives, and think about Kate on our terms. Nothing’s been on our terms. It’s been on everyone else’s terms,” Kate's father, Jim, told The San Francisco Chronicle. “We have never had a second of anger — not a moment."

“Frustration, maybe, and sadness for sure, but no anger and no retaliation or vindictiveness or anything like that,” he added.

Despite this, when the verdict was announced, it felt the justice system had failed.

"We’re just shocked — saddened and shocked ... that’s about it,” Jim said. “There’s no other way you can coin it. Justice was rendered, but it was not served.”

"I’m stunned that they couldn’t even get him on using the weapon,” Kate's brother, Brad, said, adding he's “not surprised” because of the “epic failure” that led Zarate to be on the streets in the first place.

Brad had serious problems with the defense's argument of how Zarate's gun went off accidentally.

“I own a handgun,” he said. “I know that guns don’t just go off. But you have a jury full of people, the vast majority of which probably haven’t shot a gun before and don’t know the intricacies of how a gun works.”

President Donald Trump blasted the verdict Friday morning, posting on Twitter, “The Kate Steinle killer came back and back over the weakly protected Obama border, always committing crimes and being violent, and yet this info was not used in court. His exoneration is a complete travesty of justice. BUILD THE WALL!”

Please note: This is a commentary piece. The views and opinions expressed within it are those of the author only and do not necessarily reflect the editorial opinion of IJR.

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