Defense Lawyer in Kate Steinle Murder Case Warns Donald Trump, Jeff Sessions, Mike Pence: You’re ‘Under Investigation’

lawyer Matt Gonzalez
AP/Jeff Chiu

The lawyer for the illegal alien just found not guilty of murdering Kate Steinle had a special warning for President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions in his first comments after the verdict: “They are under investigation themselves.”

Matt Gonzalez, a lawyer for defendant Jose Garcia Zarate, addressed reporters in the moments after verdict was read in the case of the murder of Kate Steinle.

After taking a moment to address Zarate being found “not guilty” of murder, Gonzalez launched into a warning for Trump, Pence, and Sessions:

For those who might criticize this verdict, there are a number of people that have commented on this case in the last couple years, the Attorney General of the United States, the President and Vice President of the United States. Let me just remind them that they are themselves under investigation by a special prosecutor in Washington, DC and they may themselves soon avail themselves of the presumption of innocence and beyond a reasonable doubt standard. And so I would ask them to reflect on that before they comment or disparaged the result in this case.

President Trump tweeted a couple of hours later:

AG Sessions also issued a statement regarding the verdict in the case:

“When jurisdictions choose to return criminal aliens to the streets rather than turning them over to federal immigration authorities, they put the public’s safety at risk. San Francisco’s decision to protect criminal aliens led to the preventable and heartbreaking death of Kate Steinle.”

The AG went on to call out San Francisco for not honoring an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) hold put on Zarate (then known under the alias Juan Francisco Lopez Sanchez) before Steinle’s death. “I urge the leaders of the nation’s communities to reflect on the outcome of this case and consider carefully the harm they are doing to their citizens by refusing to cooperate with federal law enforcement officers,” said Sessions.

Gonzalez appeared to be referring to the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election in his post-verdict warning to the President, Vice President, and Attorney General.

Zarate had been convicted of seven felonies and had been deported five times when he held the gun that killed 32-year-old Kate Steinle on San Francisco’s Pier 14.

ICE’s Deputy Director Tom Homan committed in a post-verdict statement that ICE would work to deport Zarate for a sixth time.

Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana 


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