SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — A jury is deliberating the fate of a man accused of committing one of the most gruesome murders in San Francisco’s history.
Five members of one family were brutally killed inside a home in San Francisco’s Ingleside District back in 2012.
On Tuesday, there are two theories of the case that the jury has to decide between.
It was early morning in Mar. 2012 that a 12-year-girl dropped by her grandparent’s house on Howth Street near San Francisco City College–but she stumbled into a bloody horror show.
The grandparents, their daughter, son-and-daughter-in-law were all dead, bludgeoned to death with a hammer.
The crime even grizzled police veterans like then Chief Greg Suhr, who found the case unnerving.
“It’s a genuine tragedy at 16 Howth St.,” Suhr said.
Bin Luke was eventually arrested and charged with the mass killing.
He was an acquaintance of the son, Vincent Lei. The two often played mahjong together.
In closing arguments, the prosecutor told the jury how Luke had recently lost a lot of money gambling and was poised to be evicted from his apartment.
The alleged motive of the crime was robbery since Lei was known to keep a lot of cash in the house.
The defense says there was no evidence of a robbery and suggested the style of murder was more in line with a gang-style loan, shark-style killing–and that the real killers were never caught because the police stopped looking when Luke was arrested.
Coincidently, the trial ended up being heard directly across the hallway from where the Kate Steinle murder trial was held.
Both trials overlapped, but the quintuple slaying got a lot less media attention. But these two cases have more in common than the location of their courtrooms.
Like Jose Garcia-Zarate, Luke is an undocumented immigrant with a criminal history. Luke was convicted of robbery and assault in San Jose back in 1998.
But Luke was turned over to ICE when he was released from state prison and an attempt was made to deport him back to his native Vietnam.
Vietnam declined to take him back.
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