SF Superior Court

Pair heading to trial for brazen gun attack outside SOMA nightclub

Further details are emerging about the brazen gun attack outside a nightclub in San Francisco’s SOMA district last month.

One near-mortally wounded gunshot victim lost a kidney and suffered a damaged diaphragm, while two others were left unconscious after being pistol-whipped in the series of assaults outside The Grand nightclub in the early hours of June 3.

Responding police officers narrowly avoided being shot themselves when a gun tossed to the ground by the shooter, whom they pursued and arrested, discharged.

Attorneys for Jesse Gutierrez and David Flores will appear tomorrow morning in Department 28 of San Francisco Superior Court for a pretrial conference.

Gutierrez is accused of attempted murder and a slew of firearms offenses, while Flores faces allegations of assault. Both defendants are in custody.

On arrival at the chaotic scene, just before 2am, police officers found multiple injured victims.

Witnesses reported that a fight had broken out between club attendees as they left the venue and spilled out on to Fourth Street. Several of the victims were part of a large group who had traveled from Vallejo to the city to celebrate a friend’s birthday.

A witness said that defendant Gutierrez produced a firearm, fired “four to five times” in to the air and then “four to five times” at the victim who was hit and fell to the ground whereupon he was hit and kicked in the head by Flores.

Gutierrez, wearing a red ‘Anti-Social Club’ hoody, pointed a gun at the crowd and at the face of a bystander. He pistol-whipped two other victims in the head, including a woman attempting to calm the situation, causing each to collapse and lose consciousness.

Condensed radio traffic from police responding to the scene

Police radio traffic illustrated officers’ efforts to deal with a rapidly-developing incident – some chasing and ultimately capturing Gutierrez while others dealt with a gunshot wound victim losing blood on the street in front of the club.

An off-duty officer nearby reported that shots had been fired and went to assist.

Gutierrez was tracked down by police to a nearby parking lot. During his arrest, he threw his semiautomatic pistol to the ground, causing it to fire.

No one was hit by the discharge.

Freelon Street along which Gutierrez made his escape

Interviewed five days later in hospital by SFPD Sergeant Anthony Suhrke, the gunshot victim “appeared to be in a lot of pain” and was in a “fragile” state. He had lost one kidney, suffered damage to his diaphragm, and also received a gunshot wound to the arm. He could only whisper and it was very difficult for him to speak and listeners to hear.

At an earlier preliminary hearing Judge Christine Van Aken, deciding Flores should remain in custody, heard he was on felony probation for a gun offense and had an active felony hold. In a likely reference to a juvenile rap sheet, Van Aken also mentioned Flores’ “sealed history” which “indicate[d] crimes of violence.”

A resident of an apartment building overlooking Fourth Street, disturbed by the fight, filmed the events – video which was presented to the court.

“The conduct of Mr Flores, as shown on that video, is really stunning in its lack of consideration for human life,” said Judge Christine Van Aken at an earlier hearing.

There was no prospect of Gutierrez securing release and it was not subject to significant argument.

Tomorrow’s pretrial conference will be before Judge Alexandra Robert Gordon.

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