A 17-year-old San Francisco boy charged as an adult in connection with the 2007 shooting death of another teen at a shopping center in downtown San Francisco will stand trial for murder, a judge ruled today.
Christopher Canon was 15 years old at the time prosecutors say he argued with and then shot Michael Price Jr., 18, of Oakland, five times outside a video arcade at the Metreon complex at Fourth and Mission streets on Nov. 11, 2007.
A San Francisco District Attorney’s Office’s request to try Canon as an adult for first-degree murder was granted earlier this year, according to prosecutor Eric Fleming.
After a two-day preliminary hearing, Judge Anne-Christine Massullo today found probable cause to hold Canon to answer on one count of first-degree murder.
Massullo also held Canon to answer for two separate later assaults while in custody at San Francisco’s Youth Guidance Center, one on a counselor at the center and the other on another inmate.
Canon is due back in San Francisco Superior Court on Sept. 11 for arraignment.
The Metreon shooting occurred at about 7 p.m., after Price and some of his cousins and friends left the arcade and headed down a Metreon escalator.
Canon, who was with another young man, was reportedly upset about Price’s group not moving fast enough down the escalator.
Canon and Price exchanged words, according to witnesses, and Price offered to fistfight him outside.
In response, Canon threatened to shoot Price, witnesses said.
“I’ll pop you. I’ll pop you,” one witness quoted Canon as saying, before shots rang out.
Price died a short time later at the hospital. Police nearby responded quickly and chased Canon into a nearby Bloomingdale’s store, and arrested him exiting the store on Mission Street. A 38-caliber semiautomatic handgun believed to have been used in the shooting was found on the street near the Metreon.
Canon’s attorney David Simerly said following today’s hearing that questions remain about what led up to the shooting.
“It’s not real clear” what the argument was about, Simerly said.
Simerly also noted one witness testified that after the shooting, a knife belonging to Price was found on the floor near his body.
Fleming contends the knife was not drawn during the argument.
Simerly said the case “has so many variables” that it “will ultimately have to be sorted out by a jury.”
Canon is being held on $5 million bail at the Youth Guidance Center while he awaits trial.