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Survivor testifies in traffic killings trial

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POSTED January 25, 2012 7:47 p.m.

 

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The lone survivor of a 2008 traffic shooting that killed his father and two brothers tearfully testified Wednesday that the alleged gang member on trial for the triple murders committed the crimes alone.

Andrew Bologna broke down several times on the witness stand while recalling the deadly encounter involving defendant Edwin Ramos, who prosecutors claim mistook someone in Bologna's family as a rival of his MS-13 gang.

The Bolognas were on their way home from a picnic when Ramos first blocked their Honda Civic at an intersection in the city's Excelsior District on June 22, 2008, Andrew Bologna, now 21, testified.

Ramos then pulled his Chrysler 300 with tinted windows parallel to the Civic and faced Tony Bologna on the driver's side, Andrew Bologna said.

"I saw him," Andrew Bologna said of Ramos, pointing toward him. "He was staring at my dad, mugging him, giving him a mean look, when he pulled out a gun."

Bologna said there were no words exchanged when Ramos quickly opened fire toward his father's car window before speeding off.

Tony Bologna, 48, and his sons, Michael, 20, and Matthew, 16, were killed.

Ramos, 25, maintains that another person in his car was the gunman, and that he didn't know that person was going to shoot.

Ramos appeared to be the only person inside the Chrysler, Bologna testified.

Ramos' lawyer, Marla Zamora, said her client was not a gang member and identified the shooter as Wilfredo Reyes, who has not been located. Earlier this week, Zamora said Ramos was set up by the federal government and the MS-13 street gang to take the fall for the shooting.

During her cross-examination Wednesday, Zamora repeatedly questioned Andrew Bologna on his past statements about the shooting, including whether he saw just one person inside the Chrysler and if he did see gunshots.

Bologna told Zamora that saw gunfire, heard a "pop-pop-pop" sound and shattering glass while ducking for cover.

"I seen Ramos pull out a gun and shoot through my dad's window. ... I did see my dad get shot," said Bologna, choking up. "I didn't see anybody in the passenger's seat."

Prosecutor Harry Dorfman then read a question from the jury posed to Bologna asking if the Chrysler's front windshield window was tinted.

"Yes. Yes, it was," Bologna replied.

The case drew attention to San Francisco's sanctuary policy because Ramos, an illegal immigrant from El Salvador, was never turned over for deportation despite previous run-ins with the law as a juvenile.

Under a controversial loophole, illegal immigrants charged with crimes as minors were not handed over to federal immigration officials but instead flown home or housed in California at the city's expense. The city has since closed that loophole.

With his mother and other relatives weeping loudly in the packed courtroom on Wednesday, Andrew Bologna's voice trembled as he described seeing Ramos speed off as the family's Honda rolled into another vehicle after his father and two brothers were shot.

"I didn't know what was going on. It was like a movie," he said, tears streaming down his face. "They shot my family like that. It doesn't make sense."

 

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