Federal Firearms Charges Filed Against Two San Francisco Residents For Respective Roles In Shootout Resulting In Murder
Charges Stem from Incident At Fillmore Heritage Center During Which One Victim Was Murdered and Several Bystanders were Shot
SAN FRANCISCO – A federal grand jury issued a superseding indictment charging Robert Manning and Jamare Coats for their respective roles in the March 23, 2019, shootout at the Fillmore Heritage Center, announced United States Attorney David L. Anderson and Federal Bureau of Investigation, Special Agent in Charge John F. Bennett. U.S. Attorney Anderson announced the charges as part of a press conference scheduled to coincide with Law Enforcement Appreciation Day (LEAD).
“We are all safer when federal and local law enforcement are allowed to work together,” said U.S. Attorney Anderson. “Cases clear faster when we remove obstacles to cooperation. There is no greater contributor to public safety than professional investigations and prompt charging decisions.”
"The streets of San Francisco cannot be used as a playground for gang warfare," said FBI Special Agent in Charge Bennett. "We work side-by-side with our state and local partners with a collaborative focus on keeping our neighborhoods safe."
"I am grateful for the assistance of the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the San Francisco office of the Federal Bureau of Investigations," said San Francisco Police Chief Scott. "Through the efforts of San Francisco's finest working in collaboration with our federal partners, we were able to obtain indictments in a violent crime that impacted the residents of our City, especially those who reside in the Fillmore District."
According to the superseding indictment, San Francisco residents Manning, 28, and Coats, 26, were members of a street gang called Mac Block that operated in San Francisco’s Western Addition. The indictment alleges Mac Block was an enterprise whose members engaged in racketeering activity, including murder, attempted murder, and robbery. According to the indictment, on March 23, 2019, Manning and Coats used and carried a firearm in connection with the murder of a victim. The indictment alleges that Manning and Coats used and carried a firearm for the purpose of maintaining and increasing their position in the Mac Block street gang.
Additional facts about the alleged crime appear in an order filed September 3, 2019, directing that Coats will remain detained pending further proceedings. For example, in the order, U.S. Magistrate Judge Elizabeth D. Laporte recites that the government proffered several facts at a hearing during which issues about detention were discussed. Among the facts proffered by the government were the following: Coats fired a weapon in front of the Fillmore Heritage Center, the victim died, and multiple bystanders were struck by gunfire. In addition, other court documents make clear that one bystander was paralyzed as a result of being struck by a bullet during the shootout.
Manning and Coats are charged with use of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence causing death, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(j). In addition, each defendant is charged with one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g).
Both defendants are in custody. Coats is scheduled to be arraigned on January 10, 2020, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sallie Kim, while Manning made his initial federal court appearance on January 2, 2020, in Fresno, California.
An indictment merely alleges that crimes have been committed, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If convicted of the 924(j) charge, the defendants face the maximum statutory sentence of the death penalty. If convicted of a 922(g) charge, the defendants face a maximum statutory sentence of 10 years in prison, 3 years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine. However, any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court only after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.
The United States Attorney’s Office’s Organized Crime Strike Force is prosecuting the case. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the San Francisco Police Department.
LEAD was organized by Concerns of Police Survivors and was created to support the needs of local law enforcement officers. The event first was observed in 2015 and has been celebrated each year to address officer wellness, resilience, and suicide prevention efforts.