News

Editorial: Steinle verdict -- Let's channel our frustration

Mexican man's acquittal on shooting charges leaves Pleasanton stunned

"Justice was rendered, but it was not served." -- Jim Steinle, Kate Steinle's father, told the San Francisco Chronicle in the wake of the verdict.

The acquittal last week of the person charged with killing Kate Steinle left many in Kate's hometown of Pleasanton feeling betrayed by the justice system and outraged.

Attorneys for Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, a 45-year-old Mexican national and convicted felon in the U.S. illegally, convinced the jury that Garcia Zarate picked up a gun he found and it accidentally fired, with the bullet ricocheting before killing 32-year-old Steinle on Pier 14 in San Francisco in July 2015.

Garcia Zarate was able to enter the U.S. illegally six times, and was set to be deported when Steinle was killed.

However, San Francisco's "Sanctuary City" policy allowed Garcia Zarate to remain here -- homeless and not contributing to society in a positive manner -- when he was released from San Francisco jail custody that April after a drug charge was dismissed, without federal immigration officials being told. San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee continues to defend the policy.

The Nov. 30 verdict, though, was shocking and set off a firestorm of comments of disbelief, shock and outrage through the media outlets covering the story, including the Pleasanton Weekly.

Most understand the technicalities that led to Garcia Zarate not being found guilty of first-degree murder or even second-degree murder, specifically prosecutors' failure to prove intent to fire the gun at Steinle or toward the pier crowd. However, it is difficult to understand how Garcia Zarate, who was holding the gun that shot the bullet that killed Kate, was found not guilty of involuntary manslaughter.

San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon defended the work of his prosecutors on the Steinle case, including the decision by prosecutors in closing arguments to ask jurors to consider a first-degree murder verdict rather than the second-degree or manslaughter charges.

"If there was any failure in the preparation or presentation of this case, the responsibility is mine and mine alone," Gascon told reporters this week. We'll find out next election whether Gascon is held accountable for those prosecutorial miscalculations.

Adding insult to injury, the Public Defender's Office announced Monday it will appeal the only charge Garcia Zarate was found guilty of -- being a felon in possession of a firearm.

It is understandable that lax border control and blatant disregard for federal immigration policies make us angry. If Garcia Zarate hadn't been on that pier, would Kate have died in her father's arms that day? Doubtful.

It is also understandable that the verdict provokes anger because the acquittal feels like more of a political power play than justice. If Garcia Zarate was a legal immigrant or U.S. citizen, would this case have become such a hot-button issue? Doubtful.

But Kate's death has been exploited for political means since that horrible day in 2015.

U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Dublin), who represents the 15th Congressional District that includes Pleasanton, knew Kate growing up and remains in contact with her family.

"I respect our justice system, but I disagree with the verdict," Swalwell, a former Alameda County prosecutor, told the Weekly. "I pray for Kate's family and I hope that when her name is spoken it is to remember what she contributed to our community, and not a way of advancing anyone's political agenda."

In the wake of the shooting, "Kate's Law" was drafted to toughen punishment for criminal offenders who re-enter the U.S. illegally.

Swalwell was one of two-dozen Democrats who voted in favor of the Republican-sponsored bill June 29, and it has passed the House of Representatives. Yet it languishes in the Senate.

At the time, Swalwell said, "(Kate's) heinous murder was a tragedy and we still grieve today, wishing she was still with us. Sadly, we can't bring Kate back, but lawmakers can work to try and better protect our communities from criminals hurting people. This bill is not perfect ... but it does improve our ability to punish individuals who repeatedly break the law and to deter those who may do so."

We stand with Congressman Swalwell on needing to enhance punishment of criminal offenders who illegally enter the U.S. over and over with seemingly no consequences.

We also look forward to following the Steinle family's pending lawsuit against the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. It was an agency-issued firearm that fired the bullet that killed Steinle, after it was stolen when a ranger lackadaisically stored his backup duty weapon in a backpack stuffed under the front seat of his SUV parked on The Embarcadero.

Let's channel our frustration and anger about the Steinle case by encouraging officials to finally pass "Kate's Law" as well as other commonsense legislation, to make the Bay Area safer for everyone.

* Editor's note: Information from the Bay City News Service's trial coverage was used in this report.

Comments

46 people like this
Posted by Hot Sam
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Dec 7, 2017 at 1:41 pm

"...Yet it languishes in the Senate."

"Let's channel our frustration and anger about the Steinle case by encouraging officials to finally pass "Kate's Law" "

And why is it languishing in the Senate? Because it needs 60 votes to pass, meaning 8 Democrats need the guts to defy the hard-left elements running their party and vote yes. So what are the chances that either of our 2 "officials" in the Senate, representing Kate's home state, will jump ship and vote yes?

You libs put them in office. This is what you get.


40 people like this
Posted by Mike
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Dec 8, 2017 at 9:59 am

Sanctuary City laws were at first proposed as a way to help police to solve crimes by reassuring people who were illegals that if they came forward as a witness they would not be turned over to ICE for deportation. To use sanctuary city laws to protect convicted criminals from deportation is a perversion of justice. The officials in San Francisco who have misused these laws and protected criminals need to be held accountable for their actions.


8 people like this
Posted by Brendan St John
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 8, 2017 at 1:35 pm

Kate Steinle was tragically killed by someone who had 7 previous felony convictions, and was deported to his home country of Mexico 5 times. Kate’s killer was released back into the public due to San Francisco’s sanctuary city status and their “Due process for all Ordinances” law that allows them to ignore federal agency requests to detain individuals of interest for an additional 48 hours. Eric has indicated that he prefers to call Sanctuary Cities “Safe Cities” (Source: Web Link) and has consistently vocalized his support for the sanctuary city policies that contributed to this heartbreaking tragedy. Policies that allow repeat felons to be arbitrarily released into society at the very least represent a gross negligence of common sense; at the very worst they lead to the killing of innocent civilians like Kate Steinle. I oppose these policies that create conflict between local and federal agencies that should be working together to keep all citizens safe.

We have a rich tradition of embracing immigration to the United States, and as District 15’s representative and Independent voice in Congress I would prioritize a solution for individuals previously covered by D.A.C.A. Then, I would be open to exploring solutions that don’t disadvantage legal immigrants for those who are already here and have demonstrated a positive contribution to our country. Any legislative solution will need to be done with bipartisan support, and as a non-party representative I’ll be in the best position to work with both parties to broker a solution.

www.brendanforcongress.com
www.facebook.com/brendanforcongress/


5 people like this
Posted by Liz Paul
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 9, 2017 at 12:41 pm

I also found it hard to comprehend that the accused was not found guilty of involuntary manslaughter.

I appreciate that in your Opinion piece you recognize that unfortunately this case was exploited for political means by certain groups, which in my opinion whipped up an frenzied media environment that probably pushed the DA to instead push for a murder conviction, which they were not able prove.

I also appreciate that you recognized that our elected rep, Eric Swalwell has supported proposed legislation to toughen the penalties for criminal offenders who repeatedly try to enter the U.S., from any country.

What I don't appreciate is the inclusion of a whole race/group of people in subhead that you chose to run under this story "Mexican man's acquittal on charges leaves Pleasanton stunned." Why was it necessary to use the phrase "Mexican" here with no other context? Could it not have just read "Acquittal on charges leaves Pleasanton stunned?"

In the almost 15 years that our family has lived in Pleasanton, my husband and two children (green card holder and dual American/Mexican citizens, respectively) have all been the recipients of racist anti-Mexican comments. So what I would respectively ask is for the PW to not use this type of collective phrasing that further promotes negative, anti-Mexican stereotyping.

Yes, the accused is from Mexico. But that should not be the central issue here, nor should it be the collective "handle" to which this subject is presented. This whole situation began with carelessness of a U.S. federal agent. Sadly, this gun could have been found and misused by any number of people - be it an immigrant from another country or even someone who is a U.S. citizen.

So again, I appreciate your opinion here to look for opportunities for further punishment for repeat criminal offenders. But please, look to do it in a less racial stereotypical way. Thank you.


18 people like this
Posted by Spudly
a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Dec 9, 2017 at 4:41 pm

@Liz Paul,

If the title should not include the word Mexican, how is it best to describe the person charged?

Do any of these work? if so, which one is best?

* Illegal alien's acquittal..
* Male suspect's acquittal...
* Man's acquittal...
* Felon's acquittal...
* Undocumented person's acquittal...
* Race or nationality (this seems to be used a lot in the news) so do you have the same feeling if the title said "Black suspect's acquittal...


I am not convinced the article is stereotyping. The suspect was Mexican and was acquitted. If they were white the article could have said "White suspect acquitted..." There is a difference between stereotyping and simply stating fact. I think the issue comes with inconsistency. State the facts the same way each time. For example, always use race or citizenship status or whatever to describe a person. Just pick the descriptors and stick with them.


22 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 9, 2017 at 5:03 pm

The guy was Mexican - that's a fact. You make a point of taking offense to that?

Are all Mexicans criminals ? Of course Not. The article makes no implication of that either. Youre taking offense to the wrong thing here. Be furious at this verdict. Be furious at this individual. As both are fueling a justification for backlash voter pool over a rational one.


48 people like this
Posted by PleasantonTaxpayer
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Dec 11, 2017 at 9:59 am

PleasantonTaxpayer is a registered user.

The Liz Paul post can't be real. It's gotta be a trolling attempt.


Like this comment
Posted by Realist
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 11, 2017 at 1:23 pm

Sanctuary City laws had nothing to do with the murder of Daniel Shaver and the jury acquittal of his murderer.


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 11, 2017 at 2:30 pm

Rider is a registered user.

Does anyone know if sanctuary city policies protect violent felons from being handed over to immigration authorities? If so, can you provide a reference where you found this information?

Please, if you don't have a reputable reference for where you got your information, don't respond.


Like this comment
Posted by Realist
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 11, 2017 at 7:39 pm

"Sanctuary City" is a stupid name for a policy that simply requires the Federal government to pay for their own law enforcement rather than free-loading off local governments.


6 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Amador Estates
on Dec 11, 2017 at 9:12 pm

A "Sanctuary City" is a city who refuses to cooperate with federal immigration agents by intentionally releasing illegal aliens into the public in order to garner Democratic votes by masquerading as "Champions of the downtrodden" but in reality sentencing them to "the plantation" by promising protection and handouts. Its both pathetic and Illegal. Now what all the Liberal apologists and deniers don't want to address is the fact that had San Francisco complied with FEDERAL LAW, Kate Steinle would be alive today. No amount of excuses or Liberal double speak can change those facts. Also, someone wrote: "This whole situation began with carelessness of a U.S. federal agent. Sadly, this gun could have been found and misused by any number of people". Well here's a bullet point for you...the gun was stolen from the federal agents car-presumably by the defendant. It wasn't "Left on the pier" by by law enforcement. My God....some of you...sheesh!


4 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 11, 2017 at 10:11 pm

sanity is a registered user.

Posted by Rider:
"Does anyone know if sanctuary city policies protect violent felons from being handed over to immigration authorities? If so, can you provide a reference where you found this information? Please, if you don't have a reputable reference for where you got your information, don't respond"

Here ya go sweetheart:

Web Link

There is PLENTY of documentation to verify this.


Like this comment
Posted by Realist
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 11, 2017 at 11:55 pm

Look at this so-called conservative unironically complaining about a sovereign state right to execute police powers as the state sees fit.


4 people like this
Posted by Oh No! The race card again!!
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 12, 2017 at 2:33 pm

I wondered how long it would take before people like Liz Paul threw out the race card. I am so sick and tired of people who have a perennial chip on their shoulders trying to blame everyone else for the problems that some people of their race cause. Don't tell the truth about who these people are and the crimes these people commit for heaven sake; you might offend some other illegal alien. Face it Liz, like many others, he is a Mexican illegal alien who committed an horrific crime against a total innocent, who then died in the arms of her father and all you are worried about is that he was identified as what he is? You are sick.


6 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 12, 2017 at 2:38 pm

sanity is a registered user.

Realist:
There is this thing called "FEDERAL LAW"...you don't get to ignore it when it doesn't suit your ideology.


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 12, 2017 at 4:04 pm

Rider is a registered user.

@Sanity

Thanks, the article contained a link to an ICE document that was interesting Web Link.

ICE issued a large number of detainer requests in the week of Feb 4 - 10, 2017: 2,825 total and only 47 were declined. 30 of the declined requests were for people who were only charged with a notable crime, not convicted. As for the remaining 17 convicted criminals, the notable crimes included Domestic Violence, Assault, Burglary, Cruelty Toward Child, Marijuana Possession, Indecent Exposure, Burglary Tools Possession, Traffic Offense, Forgery, DUI, Possession Of Weapon and Cocaine Possession.

Marijuana Possession and Traffic Offense are petty crimes. Cocaine Possession and Indecent Exposure are more serious crimes, but also non-violent. Forgery, Burglary and Burglary Tools Possession are even more serious crimes, but non-violent. DUI and Possession Of Weapon are perhaps the most serious non-violent crimes when it comes to the risk releasing them pose to the public.

Anyway, subtracting the non-violent criminals leaves 8 criminals convicted of violent crimes such as Domestic Violence, Assault and Cruelty Toward Child that were not detained for deportation. Assault, although violent, pertains to an offense like slapping or hitting someone. So this is not normally considered a serious violent crime. It's worth noting that 2 of the declined detainer requests for Assault were from communities with no policies in place that limit cooperation with ICE. So even communities without sanctuary city policies don't appear to have a problem releasing people convicted of assault back on the street.

That leave Domestic Violent and Cruelty Toward Child (i.e. Child Abuse) as the only remaining declined detainers for violent criminals. I believe the reason the sanctuary cities give for not detaining those criminals is because they are usually domestic in nature and deporting the criminal would generally involves splitting up a family. This is also for reasons related to fear of reporting domestic violence. A spouse is much less likely to report domestic violence if they know their spouse will be deported if convicted. Also, this appears to be something non-sanctuary cities do also because 2 of the declined detainers came form non-sanctuary cities.

In summary, while this data is only for 1 week in time, I don't see any evidence that sanctuary cities are declining detainers for seriously violent criminals i.e. people convicted of Assault with Deadly Weapon, Murder, etc. There are some declined detainers from both sanctuary cities and non-sanctuary cities for some violent criminals, but these are domestic or not serious in nature i.e. simple assault such as a slap or punch. There are also declined detainers for non-violent criminals from both sanctuary cities and non-sanctuary cities. While it would be nice to get rid of some of those criminals i.e. burglary, forgery, etc. I wouldn't want to deport a mother for stealing diapers for her baby. I find it disturbing the number of declined detains for people only charged with a crime, not even convicted and I find it very disturbing that some of the crimes are as minor as a traffic violation.


4 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 12, 2017 at 4:28 pm

sanity is a registered user.

@ Rider
The point was; (apparently you missed the point) There IS documentation that violent criminals have been released by sanctuary cities despite what some would espouse. All you have to do is be open to the idea that what you think is true may not in fact be true and you can find plenty of information. That was just the first one that came up. Go ahead and look, you'll find tons of evidence. Just saying that it doesn't happen doesn't mean it doesn't happen. I suggest that you do your own research and get back to us once you know what's really going on because at this point, you obviously don't.


4 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 12, 2017 at 4:33 pm

sanity is a registered user.

@ Rider said: "I find it disturbing the number of declined detains for people only charged with a crime".

You know what I find disturbing?
The fact that people can come here illegally and break our laws and folks like you will make excuses for them in order to garner votes. Its despicable.


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 12, 2017 at 4:56 pm

Rider is a registered user.

@Sanity

What I find disturbing is that ICE apparently issues a large number of detainer requests for people that are only charged with a crime, not even convicted. This violates the most basic principle of American justice system, that people are innocent until proven guilty.


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 12, 2017 at 5:07 pm

Rider is a registered user.

@Sanity

And I'm not making excuses. I think it would be a good idea to deport even some non-violent criminals such as career criminals i.e. people convicted of multiple burglaries, thefts etc. Something like a 3 strikes your out law.


7 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 12, 2017 at 5:30 pm

Pleasanton Parent is a registered user.

Rider - your tolerance for criminals is far greater than mine. Short Marijuana (for personal use) and traffic offense I'd say everything below that line gets you kicked out if you're here illegally.

We're kicking politicians out of office, canceling tv shows, and firing people left and right for sexual harassment (rightfully so). Yet, according to you, an illegal immigrant can do lines of coke of a prostitute after robbing a home and should be given a second and third chance?


6 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 12, 2017 at 5:58 pm

sanity is a registered user.

By Definition; Illegal aliens are already breaking the law just by being here.
First contact should send them home. Period. Problem solved. As long as some make excuses for them and allow them to stay, stay they will, and that makes the rest of us law abiding citizens less safe. That's just a fact. Are they all bad? No of course not. But they have all broken the law and they SHOULDN'T be here. Let me ask you this....suppose you have a big bowl full of M&M's. Just as you put your hand in the bowl I tell you there are some poisoned M&M's in there, but it's probably not a very big percentage. How many would you eat?


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 12, 2017 at 9:46 pm

Rider is a registered user.

@Pleasanton Parent

... "Yet, according to you, an illegal immigrant can do lines of coke of a prostitute after robbing a home and should be given a second and third chance?"

Not quite, that would be 3 offenses and qualify a person for deportation in my 3 strikes you're out proposal. The general idea would be to avoid doing inhumane things like deporting a mother for stealing diapers for her baby or deporting some old man who maybe did something stupid 40 years ago, but has since been a model citizen.




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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 12, 2017 at 9:56 pm

Rider is a registered user.

@Sanity

... "First contact should send them home. Period."

How long do you think it would take to send every single undocumented immigrant home if local police start detaining every single person they come into contact with that is undocumented? How much do you think it would cost to send them all back? How many people would die in fatal crashes when all those undocumented immigrants try evading local police for even a minor traffic stops? How many local cops would get killed by undocumented immigrants desperate to stay?

The answer to the above questions: 10+ years, billions of dollars and thousands upon thousands of deaths of undocumented immigrants, police officers and innocent bystanders.

So get real. What you are proposing is completely untenable.


2 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 12, 2017 at 9:57 pm

Rider none of the crimes you described above are situational of the persons youre stating you want to protect.

I agree - I want to provide a path for hard working contributing members to our society.

Commiting crimes, violent or otherwise, only detract from society. Get out.


2 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 12, 2017 at 9:59 pm

Rider - provide evidence for your assesment.


6 people like this
Posted by Mike
a resident of another community
on Dec 12, 2017 at 10:11 pm

Rider:

You come home one day and some homeless stranger is sitting on your couch watching TV, eating your food after he used your shower and towels. What would you do? I'll answer that. based on your comments, you will invite him to take up residency in your house. However, being the hypocrite liberal you are, you will either kick him out or call the cops, because you don't want a homeless stranger in your house, unless you invited him. This scenario is no different then an illegal crossing the boarder uninvited and milking the system.


4 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 12, 2017 at 10:25 pm

sanity is a registered user.

@Rider:
"How long do you think it would take to send every single undocumented immigrant home?"

I'm glad you asked....you start with the FIRST one and will never get to this point.
Instead, people like you made excuse after excuse allowing them to stay and become a bigger and bigger problem until the problem is so out of control a clear answer is more difficult than ever. You know what the answer is? The answer is to never let people like you in positions of power as you always ALWAYS screw things up. Liberal policies have weakened our country, our economy, our defenses and our moral fiber. The answer is to do the right thing. Even if it is hard. You don't let people break our laws and invade our country. You round them all up and ship them out. The money saved in welfare, handouts, medical costs, education, crime, criminal defense and incarceration costs will more than pay for the bus tickets out of here. The answer is to do the right thing. Something you'd never have the stones to do. You will only make the problem even bigger. Time to take a stand and return this great country to its roots, and people like you are only in the way.


2 people like this
Posted by Realist
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 13, 2017 at 12:04 am

Sanity, I'm completely shocked that a so-called conservative doesn't understand States' rights. Are you meming, bro?

Here's what the Tenth Amendment has protected:
- States' rights to not have implemented the Federal fugitive slave hunts.
- States' rights to not implement Federal gun background checks.
- States' rights to legalize marijuana (so far).
- States' rights to not expand Medicaid under Obamacare.

The Tenth Amendment works irregardless of ideology.

But my post isn't intended to convince you of otherwise. My post is simply for those on the fence reading your alt-right fake news.


2 people like this
Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 13, 2017 at 12:06 am

Rider is a registered user.

@Pleasanton Parent

Your statements are somewhat contradictory. You say you want to provide a path for hard working members of our society to earn citizenship, but not if they commit a crime, except minor crimes like Marijuana possession (for personal use) and traffic offenses.

Do you also consider shoplifting a minor crime? How about if it's a mother shoplifting diapers for her baby? What about Assault? What if the assault conviction was against a woman who slapped a guy because he groped her?

The devil of defining a deportable offense is often in the details and it is very difficult to legislate details.

As for evidence: According to USA Today, a typical deportation costs over $10,000 per person Web Link. Multiply that by the 11 million estimated undocumented immigrant in the US according to the Pew Research Center Web Link, that comes to over 110 billion dollars to deport all 11 million undocumented immigrants.


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 13, 2017 at 12:33 am

Rider is a registered user.

Additional evidence: According to a NY times article Web Link, The American Action Forum, a conservative-leaning research group, calculated the federal outlay to be at least $400 billion (to deport all 11 million undocumented immigrants), and then only if the deportations were stretched over 20 years.


4 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 13, 2017 at 8:42 am

sanity is a registered user.

Rider...I find it hilarious that you think you're so smart...yet you don't realise there is no such word as "Irregardless". The word is "Regardless" as in Regardless what Rider says, the fact remains that it is their ideology caused this problem and continues to worsen every day, therefore, that ideology is obviously flawed and should be disregarded....


2 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 13, 2017 at 8:45 am

sanity is a registered user.

Whoops...make that Realist. I can't tell you left wing nut jobs apart.


4 people like this
Posted by Mike
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Dec 13, 2017 at 9:55 am

I picked up a discarded copy of the East Bay Times yesterday while sitting in a downtown cafe and by coincidence came across this letter to the editor by Sally Whittaker of Moraga. She is referring to her son, Reed Whittaker, an EMT who lived in Livermore who was killed in 2013 by an immigrant with 7 DUI arrests named Primitivo Garcia, of Livermore. I could not find her letter in the online edition but if you search on the names involved you will find articles with the details of the crash, which involved a drunken driver slamming into the victim who was stopped in stalled traffic on I 580. Here is the transcription of her letter.

"California failed our son, who as killed in DUI crash
Four years ago, the state of California killed our 29-year old son. The state allowed an immigrant with seven prior DUIs to hold a valid drivers license. On Dec 12, 2013, this repeat offender once again drove drunk, murdering our nnocent son. Despite over 240 letters of protest, Alameda County Judge Dan Grimmer further compounded our pain by sentencing the criminal to six years in state prison, rather than the maximum of 10 years. Finally on Sept. 30, 2017, the state of California spit on the memory of our son, releasing his killer after serving only 21 months. He is now free to enjoy another holiday season with his family - our son is not. The media fails to cover such daily travesties off justice, only showcasing high profile crimes. Citizens of California beware: These tragedies are not aberrations in our justice system. Sadly, your family could be the next victim.
-Sally Whittaker, Moraga"


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 13, 2017 at 10:21 am

Rider is a registered user.

@Sanity. I don't label my opinions right or left. My opinions are based on rational thought about the problem at hand. I take into consideration known facts. I also believe to maintain our humanity, any real solution must be humane. Name calling and playing the blame game is not going to accomplish anything. Can you think of a real, rational solution to the problem at hand that is humane and does not cost taxpayers 400 billion dollars? An ideal solution would be one that doesn't cost taxpayers anything, insures domestic tranquility, improves our safety and benefits everyone including the undocumented immigrant.

The only solution I can think of that meets all those requirements is to transition all those peaceful undocumented immigrant who are just trying to make an honest living into American citizens. This will increase the taxpayer base, improve the economy, effectively eliminate crime committed by undocumented immigrants and be a win win for everyone.


4 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 13, 2017 at 10:27 am

sanity is a registered user.

No. Simply, NO.
This is the kind of effed up logic that caused this problem to begin with and it continues to worsen because of it. You have to stem the bleeding. Ship them out.
Haven't you been paying attention?


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Posted by Realist
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 13, 2017 at 12:35 pm

Whoa, calm down, bro. Irregardless is just a non-standard word. Why you get so spittin' mad over words? Don't you like alliteration? Which grammar teacher beat you as a child? Is that why you screech talking points like, "bUt bUT FeDEraL lAwS!" and "mUH IDEologGIES!" while ignoring what federalism is?


2 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 13, 2017 at 12:45 pm

sanity is a registered user.

@Realist...you're missing the whole point.
You don't get to cause a problem, make excuses for why it's okay to cause a problem while the problem keeps getting bigger, and then cry that the problem is too big so you have to let it become an even bigger problem. That's what you're doing. Amnesty was handed out back decades ago when the problem of illegal immigration was still relatively small. What happened? Did that fix it? No, we got MORE illegal immigration....don't you understand cause and effect? That is the problem with your argument...it's not just ridiculous, it's damaging the country.


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 13, 2017 at 2:20 pm

Rider is a registered user.

@Sanity. Again, I haven't seen a proposal come from you that doesn't involve spending 400 billion. Perhaps you like paying taxes so much that you want to pay even more.

As for my proposal, part of the process to transition the millions of peaceful undocumented immigrants to US citizens could include a fine. The fine would be punishment for violating US immigration law and serve as a deterrent for people thinking of violating US immigration law. It would have to be large enough to serve as an effective deterrent, but not so large to make it impossible for undocumented immigrants currently living in the US to afford. Oh, and perhaps one of the best things about this proposal from a conservative's point of view is it would cost $0. The revenue generated by the fines would more than pay for the cost of the program to convert undocumented immigrant to US citizens. It would perhaps even generate revenue, helping to lower your taxes. It's a win win situation for everyone.


2 people like this
Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 13, 2017 at 4:06 pm

sanity is a registered user.

Rider, again you miss the point.
We don't reward bad behaviour and expect others won't emulate that same bad behaviour expecting more of the same concessions. That's what's gotten us into this mess in the first place. The money we pay to manage these illegals now far outweighs what it would cost to bus them out. Plus it sends the message "Don't come here illegally and expect handouts from the American taxpayer." I know you don't want to hear that, but it's the damn truth. Again, it is people like you that caused this problem in the first place. What makes anyone in their right mind think you could possibly have a good solution? There is not going to be amnesty....not going to happen. We tried that decades ago and all we got was even more illegals coming into the country....why is that such a hard concept for you to understand?


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Posted by Realist
a resident of Downtown
on Dec 13, 2017 at 4:29 pm

Why are you still mad? I'm not causing any problem nor making excuses nor even making argument. I'm only pointing out that you wear the label of "conservative" only without actually abiding by what it means. No conservative wants a huge central government that dictates to localities. American Federalism is a delegated system with clear divisions between what powers are given to the central government and to the States. That doesn't seem to be a system that fits you.


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Posted by sanity
a resident of Mohr Park
on Dec 13, 2017 at 4:38 pm

sanity is a registered user.

Because the whole thing is ridiculous....we have a federal law that says...oh forget it. You don't care about truth or justice. People like you are what's wrong with this country. Fortunately, you are being voted out of office in droves...and thank God for that. You have to import future democrats because the enormity of America rejected more of the same liberal nonsense last November. America is waking up. Your days are numbered.


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Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 13, 2017 at 8:15 pm

Rider my words are not contradictory as a hard working contributing member of society by definition is not a criminal.

And yes, I'd absolutely deport a person that stole from a store.

The reason deportation costs as much as it does is because of people like you fighting it.


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Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 13, 2017 at 8:20 pm

Rider.....how is a mother shoplifting diapers for her baby going to afford a fine?

....please don't answer, I already know. You expect me to pay for someone else to come here illegally and rack up fines


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Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 14, 2017 at 8:31 am

Rider is a registered user.

@Pleasanton Parent

Well, if you are familiar with our justice system, people who cannot afford to pay fines are offered payment plans and a judge can change the fine to community service if needed. We could also give the undocumented immigrant an option to be deported if they don't want to do community service or pay the fine.

You can also pair this program with a program that allows hard working people to come to the US, particularly if they have in-demand skills like construction. The less expensive options would be to come legally. The more expensive option would be to come illegally. That would substantially reduce the number of people entering illegally, not cost anything and it would improve our economy.


2 people like this
Posted by Thanks
a resident of Livermore
20 hours ago

Thanks is a registered user.

Sanity, I feel like you have thrown me a life preserver while I've been drowning in a sea of left coast liberalism! Keep up the great, common sense posts, maybe some of these bleeding heart liberal nut jobs will hear you!!


2 people like this
Posted by Rider
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
19 hours ago

Rider is a registered user.

@Thanks. If you think someone who is clearly angry, venting their frustration by resorting to name calling and completely unwilling to alter their untenable solution to deport all undocumented immigrants despite the real verifiable evidence of the cost to taxpayers, the cost to the economy and the cost to people's live has common sense, then what do you call someone who thinks rationally and unemotionally about the problem?


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