Father of Pier 14 shooting victim to speak at Senate Judiciary Committee

OAKLAND, Calif. (KTVU) -- The father of the woman fatally shot by an undocumented immigrant while walking near Pier 14 earlier this month is scheduled to speak before members of Congress on Tuesday.

Jim Steinle of Pleasanton is set to speak at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing about his daughter, Kate Steinle, who was killed on July 1st in San Francisco.

The suspected killer, Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, is an illegal immigrant who had previously been deported five times and had numerous felonies on his record.

The hearing, requested by Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, was scheduled to identify potential public safety issues stemming from the county's immigration policies.

Grassley has invited the head of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement as well as the director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to testify Tuesday after members of the Steinle family have had a chance to address the senators. 

Since Steinle's death, San Francisco's sanctuary city policy has been a hot topic. "By mandating local law enforcement to get involved in immigration enforcement, and I will tell you that is very problematic for local law enforcement. It will do much more harm than good," said Tom Manger, Chief of Police in Montgomery County, Maryland.

The policy prevents local police from cooperating with Immigration and Customs Enforcement or ICE, except when there is a warrant or court order in place. Manger will also testify at the Senate hearing. He argues local police picking up illegal immigrants on ICE detainers was not helping the fight against crime.

"It was causing big problems in many of our communities, where people, especially in the new immigrant communities, would stop calling the police, wouldn't ask for help, they were victims of crimes and wouldn't report it," he said.

But many on the right say this is not the way to handle illegal immigrants, and that this policy did help lead to Kate Steinle's death.

"I don't think that there should be sanctuary cities, I don't think states should choose whether they apply this particular federal law," said Tom Del Beccaro, Republican candidate for Barbara Boxer's U.S. Senate seat.

"The police force needs to use common sense," added Del Beccaro. "You can't make the argument that a seven time felon, five time breaker of immigration laws somehow should be protected. Where else would you draw the line?"

An advocate of immigrants' rights pointed to a survey that showed 41 percent of Latinos believe the primary reason Latinos don't come forward is fear of deportation.

The hearing starts on Capitol Hill at 10 a.m., EST. KTVU Fox 2 have details for you throughout the day, including some of the testimony from Kate Steinle's father.