San Francisco News

DA says video ties suspects to pimp's murder

Friday, July 06, 2012

Prosecutors have developed significant leads in the killing of a man in San Francisco, accused of pimping the daughter of one of the murder suspects. The main evidence is a surveillance video.

District Attorney George Gascon says the murder was not a crime of passion, but a pure and simple revenge murder. He says he now has ample evidence to prove that the parents of the girl, Barry Gilton and Lupe Mercado, and two others carefully orchestrated what he called the vigilante killing.

"This quite frankly is a drive-by shooting, there's no other way to put it," Gascon said.

Gascon says Gilton, his cousin Antonio and Alfonso Williams hunted down 22-year-old Calvin Sneed.

Gascon says prosecutors have now developed compelling evidence -- cell phone records and perhaps most significantly, surveillance video.

It shows the three individuals coming together; there's a weapon that's taken out of the vehicle and we know through telephone sites, we place the three individuals near the place of the murder," Gascon said.

The surveillance video was taken on the 1400 block of Grove Street on June 4, the day of the murder. Gascon said the car carrying the suspects was rented in Los Angeles and driven up to San Francisco, which Gascon says gives further proof that the murder was pre-mediated.

The surveillance video shows the Hyundai Tucson driving up to Grove Street. The three men, Gascon says, are seen meeting together, and then getting into the rented car.

Gascon says they drove to a street in the Bayview and waited for Sneed and when Sneed drove by, Barry Gilton shot him in the head.

The surveillance video picks up the three men again as they return to Grove Street, get in their cars and drive away.

Getting the video was part serendipitous and part good police work.

"It was part of a federal investigation unrelated to this case," Gascon said. "Apparently, as the FBI was reviewing the video, they realized these were the people related to the murder. They brought this evidence to us."

Attorney Eric Safire represents Barry Gilton. He pleaded not guilty, but Safire says Gilton is also relieved that the nightmare is over.

"Even the district attorney would agree that Mr. Gilton's daughter was in grave danger," Safire said. "The fact that she's no longer in danger is a good fact. She's now safe."

Gascon says the parents knew Sneed was in San Francisco but did not call police. Instead, he says they decided to take matters into their own hands.

All four will be back in court later this month.

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Tags:
shooting, candlestick park, george gascon, crime, sex crimes, bayview hunters point, san francisco news, vic lee
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