WASHINGTON – Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) released this statement after learning illegal immigrant Jose Zarate had been acquitted of the murder of American citizen Kate Steinle:
“Whether or not the shooting was intentional or a tragic accident, Jose Zarate would not have been able to kill Kate Steinle if not for San Francisco’s dangerous ‘sanctuary city’ policy. This is what happens when you try to score political points by ignoring the law and allowing dangerous criminals to go free.
“As a father, I hurt for Kate’s family. Working with President Trump, I am committed to ending sanctuary cities and restoring the rule of law.”
Kate Steinle was walking with her father on a San Francisco pier when she was shot and killed by Jose Zarate in July 2015. Zarate, an illegal immigrant with multiple felony convictions, had been deported from the United States five times. He had been released from a San Francisco jail earlier that year, despite a federal request to hold him for his sixth deportation, because San Francisco bars local law enforcement from cooperating with federal immigration authorities.
This summer, Congressman Pittenger spoke in support of Kate’s Law (H.R. 3004), which enhances penalties for deported felons who return to the United States without permission. He also supported the No Sanctuary for Criminals Act (H.R. 3003), which cracks down on sanctuary cities. Both measures passed the U.S. House of Representatives with strong support.