DOJ issues arrest warrant for undocumented immigrant acquitted in Kate Steinle killing
A federal warrant has been issued for the arrest of a Mexican immigrant acquitted Thursday evening of murder charges in the 2015 killing of Kate Steinle.
Steinle's death has been taken up by opponents of so-called sanctuary cities. They argue that stricter immigration enforcement would have kept Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, who is residing in the U.S. illegally and was deported five separate times before the 2015 shooting, off the streets.
The arrest warrant unsealed in the Western District of Texas by the Justice Department on Friday accuses Zarate of violating his supervised release.
Zarate was released from jail in 2015, despite a federal immigration detainer request. Months after his release, he allegedly shot and killed Steinle on a pier in San Francisco.
Zarate was acquitted on Thursday of murder and manslaughter charges after a weekslong trial. He was convicted on a charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm.
President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump: 'I will not let Iran have nuclear weapons' Rocket attack hits Baghdad's Green Zone amid escalating tensions: reports Buttigieg on Trump tweets: 'I don't care' MORE seized on Steinle's killing as a presidential candidate, pointing to it as an example of the need to strengthen immigration laws. He chimed in on the subject after the verdict was announced Thursday night, calling it "disgraceful."
"No wonder the people of our Country are so angry with Illegal Immigration," Trump tweeted.
The Justice Department is also considering federal charges from Steinle's death.
“We’re looking at every option and we will prosecute this to the fullest extent available under the law because these cases are tragic and entirely preventable,” Sarah Isgur Flores, the department’s director of public affairs, said on “Fox and Friends.”
In a statement issued shortly after the verdict was rendered on Thursday, Tom Homan, the deputy director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said the agency would “work to take custody of Mr. Garcia Zarate and ultimately remove him from the country."