Ranger whose gun used in San Francisco Pier 14 slaying was promoted

FILE - This undated photo provided by the San Francisco Police Department shows Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez. It’s been two years since Kate Steinle was randomly gunned down on a busy San Francisco pier in a shooting that set off a fierce national immigration debate. Lopez-Sanchez, the man accused of killing Steinle, is still waiting for his murder trial to be scheduled. He is set to appear in court Friday, July 14, 2017, when a trial date may get set. (San Francisco Police Department via AP, File)

 

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – A news station says the U.S. Bureau of Land Management promoted a ranger months after his stolen gun turned up in the hands of a Mexican man accused of using it to kill a woman on a San Francisco pier.

KQED news said Friday an internal BLM email thread it obtained shows that Ranger John Woychowski was promoted to a supervisory position five months after Kate Steinle’s July 2015 death.

BLM spokeswoman Sarah Webster said Friday Woychowski followed proper protocol for reporting the gun stolen.

The man accused of killing Steinle, Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, said the gun was wrapped in t-shirt he found under a bench, and it went off accidentally.

Steinle’s death set off a national debate over U.S. sanctuary cities and immigration. Zarate had been deported five times.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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