After three weeks of jury selection, opening arguments are set to begin on Monday in the trial of Edwin Ramos, an alleged MS-13 gang member accused of murdering a father and two of his sons in San Francisco’s Excelsior District in 2008.
Ramos, 25, of El Sobrante, is charged with fatally shooting Tony Bologna, 48, and his sons Michael, 20, and Matthew, 16, near Maynard and Congdon streets on June 22, 2008, as they drove home from a picnic.
Prosecutors allege that the shooting was a case of mistaken identity and that Ramos believed the victims were rival gang members.
About 1,300 people were in the juror pool for the case when jury selection started on Jan. 3. Most said they had hardships that prevented them from serving during the trial, which is expected to last months.
Ramos is an illegal immigrant, and the case drew criticism of the city’s sanctuary policy, which barred local authorities from reporting undocumented juvenile offenders to federal immigration agents.
Ramos, an alleged member of the MS-13 gang, had numerous contacts with San Francisco police for drugs and violent crimes as a juvenile but was not reported to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
The city has changed its policy since the murders. The Bologna family also sued the city over the sanctuary policy, although a judge later dismissed the suit.
Dan McMenamin, Bay City News