The Latest: Hearing begins in California synagogue attack

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The Latest on a preliminary hearing for a 20-year-old man charged with opening fire on a Southern California synagogue, killing a woman and injuring three other people (all times local):

9:55 a.m.

A preliminary hearing has begun in the case of a 20-year-old man accused of opening fire in a Southern California synagogue in April, killing a woman and injuring three other people.

Defendant John T. Earnest entered San Diego Superior Court in blue jail garb Thursday and sat next to his public defender.

Earnest has pleaded not guilty to murder, attempted murder and an arson count tied to a separate mosque fire. The hearing will determine whether the case goes to trial.

The shooting occurred at the Chabad of Poway synagogue on the last Day of Passover.

Court documents say the college student called 911 as he fled, saying, “I just shot up a synagogue,” and that he did it because he believed Jews were destroying “the white race.”

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9:15 p.m.

Prosecutors will have a recording of a 20-year-old’s call to an emergency dispatcher and his online posts when they try to convince a judge that he should be put on trial for opening fire in a Southern California synagogue, killing one woman and injuring three people.

A preliminary hearing for John T. Earnest begins Thursday in state court in San Diego.

Earnest has pleaded not guilty to murder, attempted murder and arson tied to a mosque fire. The murder charge would make him eligible for the death penalty if convicted.

Court documents say the college student called 911 as he fled Chabad of Poway on April 27, saying, “I just shot up a synagogue,” and that he did it because he believed Jews were destroying “the white race.”

Categories: California News