Suspect in road rage triple homicide in court

June 27, 2008 10:59:51 PM PDT
The man accused of killing a father and his two sons during a minor traffic incident in San Francisco faced a judge Friday for the first time since his arrest.

It's a triple murder that investigators are still trying to unravel and the victims' family is trying to understand.

Twenty-one-year-old Edwin Ramos appeared in court under heavy security. He listened quietly without expression as the judge read the charges against him: three counts of murder and other crimes related to Sunday's killings of Tony Bologna and his two sons.

They were shot when they accidentally blocked a Chrysler which was turning onto their street in the city's Excelsior District. Police say someone in the Chrysler opened fire, hitting all three victims.

They say tips led to Ramos' arrest Wednesday.

The murder counts carry special circumstances because Ramos is charged with multiple murders while being a participant of a street gang. If convicted, Ramos could face the death penalty or life imprisonment.

Life in prison is more likely because District Attorney Kamala Harris has said consistently she is against the death penalty. Her office tells ABC7 her position remains the same.

Police say Ramos is a member of a violent gang called MS-13 with roots in Central America. Ramos is an immigrant from El Salvador. On the back of his shaved head is a tattoo of the Salvadoran national crest.

"An innocent family was murdered. That doesn't mean he did it," says Ramos' lawyer Joe O'Sullivan.

O'Sullivan admits his client has some involvement with MS-13 but he says police are overstating its significance.

"It's what the police say, if you associate with a gang member or live there, you're a gang member. The police department doesn't carry active books of who's in MS-13," says O'Sullivan.

Gloris Ellis is a family friend of the Bologna's. She says the senseless crime angers her.

"I don't see how anybody could do such a crime, you know?" says Ellis.

Ramos is scheduled to enter a plea next week.

ABC7's Vic Lee spoke exclusively with Edwin Ramos' wife. Read and watch his report here.


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