Defendant John Earnest listens during testimony by witness Oscar Stewart during Earnest's preliminary hearing, Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019, in Superior Court in San Diego. Prosecutors say Earnest opened fire during a Passover service at the Chabad of Poway synagogue on April 27, killing one woman and injuring three people, including the rabbi. (John Gibbins/The San Diego Union-Tribune via AP, Pool)

Judge set to rule on trial for suspect in synagogue shooting

September 19, 2019 - 11:02 pm
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SAN DIEGO (AP) — A judge is expected to rule whether a 20-year-old former college student should stand trial on charges of firing an assault rifle inside a Southern California synagogue, killing one woman and injuring three people.

John T. Earnest has pleaded not guilty to murder and attempted murder at the synagogue and arson in connection with a fire at a nearby mosque. The judge planned to rule after hearing from a final witness on Friday.

Prosecutors on Thursday played a 12-minute recording of the gunman calmly telling a 911 dispatcher that he had just "shot up" a synagogue to save white people from Jews. The gunman described terms for a peaceful surrender and scolded law enforcement for taking too much time to find him in his parked car.

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