Jurors in Kate Steinle murder trial ask significant questions on gun

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The jury in the Kate Steinle murder trial went into the courtroom this morning over questions about the gun used in the shooting. (KGO-TV)

The jury in the Kate Steinle murder trial went into the courtroom this morning over questions about the gun used in the shooting.

"They could be curious about the amount of force it takes to pull the trigger because the defense argued the gun went off by accident. And the prosecution argued that the gun was designed not to go off by accident and that it takes significant pressure to pull the trigger," said legal analyst John Creighton.

The defense asked the jury to ask the judge to be allowed to hold the gun and pull the trigger. But during instructions, the judge made it very clear to the jury that they would not be allowed to "experiment" with any of the evidence.

Today is the sixth day of jury deliberations. The jury is deciding whether Jose Ines Garcia Zarate meant to shoot her in 2015 or if they believe his claim that the shooting was accidental.

Every little detail, every person who walks in out of that courtroom is scrutinized to figure out where the jury could be in their decision-making process.

There is still no sign of a verdict at this time.

RELATED: Speculation generates anxiousness in day 5 of Kate Steinle deliberations

Jurors are trying to decide the fate of Garcia Zarate, a 45-year-old homeless undocumented immigrant. They can convict him of first or second-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter or of course they can find him not guilty. Another option is a hung jury.

"A judge will generally try to assist the jury in reaching the verdict and there are instructions that the judge will give the jury if it indicates that it is unable to reach a verdict," legal analyst John Creighton said.

Garcia Zarate is accused of killing Steinle as she was walking with her father two years ago along Pier 14. Officials said she was shot in the back and killed.

Garcia Zarate said he just picked a gun up off the ground that he found and then it went off accidentally, but prosecutors believe he aimed and fired it on purpose.

The jurors began deliberating last week but took a break for Thanksgiving.

Click here for more stories, photos, and video on the Kate Steinle case.

Related Topics:
trialpier 14 shootingcourtcourt casemurderhomicidepoliceSFPDshootingfatal shootingimmigrationimmigration reformSan Francisco
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