SAN FRANCISCO (KRON/AP) – Francisco Sanchez, the man arrested for allegedly killing 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle at Pier 14 in San Francisco, has admitted in a jailhouse interview that he shot her, but Sanchez says the shooting was an accident.
Speaking in both Spanish and English, Sanchez said he found a gun wrapped inside a shirt and when he picked it up, he heard three shots go off.
Police say witnesses did not hear any argument or dispute before the shooting happened, suggesting it may have been a random attack.
Steinle was with her father and a family friend at Pier 14 at the time of the shooting. Steinle was shot in the upper torso. Steinle was taken to San Francisco General Hospital where she died.
Homeland Security on Friday announced that Sanchez previously been deported five times. His criminal history includes seven prior felony convictions, four of them for narcotics charges.
Police had Sanchez in custody prior to the shooting but released him saying they determined Sanchez had no warrants and had completed his federal time.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) lodged an immigration detainer against Sanchez, requesting notification prior to his release so ICE officers could make arrangements to take him into custody, but the detainer was not honored.
SFPD department policy and San Francisco’s sanctuary ordinance prevents the detention of an individual based on a civil immigration detainer once the individual is eligible to be released.