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Suspect shot by police and charged with aggravated assault

Police believe that a fatal shooting last month of a 20-year-old and a shootout with police that wounded the deceased's alleged revenge-seeking friend could be related to gang crimes in the Mission District of San Francisco. Two men are under arrest on homicide charges in connection with the original shooting.

The Mission District erupted into protests for two nights following the police shooting of a 22-year old who, according to police, had armed himself with an assault pistol to seek revenge for the killing of his friend. The suspect pointed the weapon at a police officer who confronted him. The police officer shot the armed suspect.

Police identified the wounded man as a gang member with a prior criminal conviction. Police charged him with aggravated assault on a police officer, possession of an assault weapon, possession of a weapon by a felon, and participating in a criminal street gang.

Incidents such as those occurring in the Mission District in the past month illustrate the impact of violent crimes on young people. The victim and the men under arrest for the homicide range in age from 18 to 22. If convicted of the charges against them, each of the men could receive a long prison sentence.

Violent crimes such as murder, robbery, and aggravated assault bring with them some of the most severe penalties authorized by law. With law enforcement and prosecutors vigorously enforcing laws against violent crimes, representation by a criminal defense attorney experienced in handling cases involving violence or the threat of violence is often essential. If a defendant is facing the possibility of life imprisonment, an aggressive defense strategy that exposes weaknesses in the prosecution case can lead to an offer of a reduced charge or more lenient sentence.

Source: San Francisco Chronicle, "2nd arrest in Mission District killing," Will Kane, Sept. 26, 2010

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