Crowds of Bay Area residents took the steps of Alameda County’s main courthouse in Oakland on Monday to demand that the city’s liberal district attorney be recalled.
The rally came amid reports that DA Pamela Price’s office is reviewing the murder charges against a trio of gang members who are accused of shooting dead a two-year-old boy.
Jasper Wu, aged just 23 months, was shot dead after he was caught in the cross fire during a rolling gun battle between two rival gangs across Interstate 880 in November 2021. The gangs, Chopper City and Eddy Rock, are among the most active street gangs in the Bay Area.
On the steps of the courthouse, protesters chanted: ‘Justice for Jasper,’ Recall Pamela Price’ and ‘Do your job.’ As citizens held signs that read: ‘Victims matter’ and ‘Hold criminals accountable.’
The three men accused of Wu’s murder, Trevor Green, Ivory Bivins and Johnny Jackson, were supposed to appear in court on Monday. They were first apprehended and charged this past December.
Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price’s office is reviewing numerous charges in cases brought by her predecessor
Jasper Wu was killed by a stray bullet while sleeping in his car seat as his mother drove down I-880 on November 6, 2021
On the steps of the courthouse, protesters shouted: ‘Justice for Jasper,’ Recall Pamela Price’ and ‘Do your job.’ As citizens held signs that read: ‘Victims matter’ and ‘Hold criminals accountable’
‘I want to clear the record. I assured the parents of Jasper Wu that the men we believe are responsible for his death are charged with serious crimes and they will be held accountable,’ Price said in a video statement.
Among those who spoke on Monday, where representatives of the Wu family as well as other members of the public whose lives have been impacted by the Bay Area’s seemingly never ending crime wave.
One of the organizers, Bob Yee, accused Price of ‘laying the groundwork for no jail time for the people who killed a 23-month-old,’ reports the San Francisco Chronicle.
While the president of the Oakland Chinatown Improvement Council, Stewart Chen, read out a letter from Wu’s mother.
‘I am extremely worried about Jasper’s case and the direction it might go,’ she wrote. She said that she expected her son’s killers to receive the ‘maximum possible sentence to prevent this from ever happening to anyone else again.’
Chen told the crowd that the Wu family wants to go on with their lives but that they will be unable to do so until their son’s killers are brought to justice.
The original charges against the gang members were brought by Price’s predecessor Nancy O’Malley.
An and Jihao Wu, Jasper’s parents, are now considering leaving California because they feel so unsafe
Johnny Jackson, one of the three men charged in Jasper’s death, remains in custody
According to multiple reports, the concern among the community that Wu’s killers may not face murder charges stem from the fact that Price’s office offered a plea deal to triple murderer Delonzo Logwood.
Last month, it emerged that Price’s office was advising her team of prosecutors not to pursue enhancement charges on crimes as part of an effort to ‘reduce recidivism’.
It means that any criminal enhancement that could have been applied now likely won’t – and will reduce the time Jasper’s killers spend behind bars.
Green and Bivins, who are allegedly members of the Chopper City gang, were driving in an Infiniti along the freeway, while Jackson and Lee, alleged members of the Eddy Rock gang, were in a Nissan Altima, prosecutors said.
A shot fired from the Infiniti missed the Altima, prosecutors said, and instead went through the windshield of the Wu family’s car. The bullet was found lodged in the seat behind Jasper’s car seat.
Wu’s mother, Cherry Wu, was driving in a white Lexus sedan in the southbound direction of Interstate 880 from San Francisco heading back to her home in Fremont, when the tragedy happened.
There were three other children in the car at the time.
Two officers at the scene when 23-month-old Jasper Wu was fatally struck on I-880 in Oakdale
Cherry Wu’s car (pictured, a white Lexus sedan. Little Jasper, who had been seated in a car seat in the back of the car, had been in the vehicle with other relatives, including three other kids
Grief-stricken mother Cherry Wu’s son Jasper was killed in a freeway shooting November 6, 2021 by rival gang members from the San Francisco area
A fourth suspect in the shooting, Keison Lee, was killed in a separate shooting, in November 2022.
Jasper’s mother, An Wu, told ABC7 in San Francisco that it would be the wrong move.
‘If that happens, what kind of message are we sending to the public?’ she said.
She added that she still ‘feels fear’ every time she drives through Oakland.
ABC obtained an internal memo from Price’s office which describes her desire to ‘bring balance back to sentencing and reduce recidivism’ by no longer allowing prosecutors to file ‘enhancements’.
She has not yet responded to the Wu family’s criticism of her plans.
Price announced in January that her office had set up a new Public Accountability Unit will re-investigate eight police shootings and custody deaths, including two killings of unarmed men by the same Oakland police officer.
The review also included two 15-year-old shootings by Oakland Officer Hector Jimenez. In July 2008, Jimenez killed 27-year-old Mack ‘Jody’ Woodfox, who was shot in the back while running away from a traffic stop.
Seven months earlier, Jimenez and another officer shot and killed Andrew Moppin-Buckskin, 20, who also ran away after a traffic stop.
In both cases, Jimenez told investigators that he believed the suspects were reaching for guns in their waistbands.
Oakland is a stone’s throw from San Francisco, where some of the most progressive changes in the country were made by former DA Chesa Boudin.
Crime and homelessness soared under his watch, with open-air drug markets becoming commonplace.
He was replaced by Brooke Jenkins last year. She has vowed to restore order to the city.