Assemblywoman Suzette Martinez Valladares, R-Santa Clarita, joined law enforcement and victims’ rights advocates at the Capitol on Thursday to address the recent gang shooting in Sacramento, and the failed policies that led to one of the alleged shooters’ release from jail.
As investigators continue gathering evidence of the gang-related gunfight that killed six on Sunday, three suspects seen with guns have been arrested on gun-related charges, but none have been charged with the shooting itself. The “early” release of one gang member with a history of violence particularly sparked an uproar at the Capitol on Thursday.
“The recent shooting in Sacramento has left many of us speechless and horrified,” Valladares said. “Horrible, violent crimes are happening all over the state because of pro-criminal laws. This morning, on the steps of our State Capitol, I called for these policies to be repealed and our safety restored.”
Daviyonne Dawson, 31, was a main subject of conversation after he was released in lieu of $500,000 bail Tuesday, despite being seen in possession of a weapon during the weekend mass shooting that left six dead and 12 injured.
Dawson was reportedly seen carrying a handgun immediately after the shooting, though police claim that there is no reason to believe he fired any rounds during the gang-related gunfight, according to Fox KTVU.
Even though deputies suspect Dawson’s gun was not used during the shooting, Valladares claims that the gang member, with an extensive record of violence, should not have been back on the streets in the first place.
“The man arrested in connection with the shooting is a repeat violent offender most recently behind bars for violently assaulting a woman he was attempting to lure into sex trafficking,” Valladares said. “He only served four years of his ten-year sentence and was released less than 60 days ago, despite strong opposition from prosecutors.”
Sacramento Superior Court filings show that Dawson was arrested in relation to felony cases in 2012, 2014 and 2015, and documents show that he was charged with assault on a man on Halloween night in 2014 as a member of the Starz street gang, as reported by Fox KTVU.
He was also charged as a street member who “engaged in a pattern of criminal activity and did willfully promote, further and assist in felony criminal conduct by said gang members,” according to court documents obtained by Fox KTVU.
“Now, six people are dead because these pro-criminal policies let a dangerous criminal out of jail too soon,” Valladares said.
The first suspect arrested – Dandrae Martin, 26 – remains in police custody with no bail after being arrested as a “related suspect” on assault with a deadly weapon charges and carrying a loaded gun as a convicted felon.
Martin was released from an Arizona prison in 2020 after serving just over one and a half years for violating probation after pleading guilty to punching, kicking and choking a woman inside a hotel room when she refused to work for him as a prostitute in 2016, as reported by Fox KTVU.
Smiley Martin, his older brother and second suspect arrested, was among one the 12 injured during the gunfight when several shooters – allegedly including himself – shot into an area in Sacramento as clubs were letting out, hitting at least a dozen bystanders in the crossfire.
Martin awaits jail custody once he is released from the hospital and is expected to be booked for possession of a firearm by a prohibited person and possession of a “machine gun.”
The gang-member was previously released from prison on probation in February after he punched his girlfriend, dragged her from her home by her hair and started whipping her with a belt, as reported by Fox KTVU.
While the investigation remains ongoing as additional gang members were reportedly involved, Valladares continues to fight for policy reform.
To listen to more comments from Valladares, click here.
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