Accused S.F. Pier shooter’s release was in line with city’s policy: legal counsel says

Accused S.F. Pier shooter’s release was in line with city’s policy: legal counsel says

The San Francisco County Sheriff's Legal Counsel Freya Horne has defended the decision of setting a man free who later gunned down a 32-year-old Pleasanton woman while she was strolling San Francisco's Embarcadero with her father.

Francisco Sanchez, 45, shot and killed Kathryn Steidle along Pier 14 last Wednesday evening. Less than four months back, he was in a Bay Area jail.

The Department of Homeland Security said that Sanchez should have been turned over to federal immigration officials immediately upon his release from jail, but the San Francisco County set him free.

But the county sheriff's Legal Counsel Horne argued in a recent interview San Francisco was a sanctuary for immigrants, and it didn't turn over undocumented immigrants just because immigration officials wanted them to do that.

Expressing grief over the shooting death of Steidle, "It's a tragedy. We all recognize that. But we followed city policy."

However, Horne said she could realize that letting the suspect free from jail on 15th of April this year after not being charged with illegal marijuana sales was a shame.

Sanchez, who is again behind the bars, is an undocumented immigrant from Mexico. He has a long history of criminal activities, and has been deported to Mexico five times, last time in 2008.

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