Couple Kills Pimp To Save Daughter
A San Francisco couple whose teenage daughter was allegedly being pimped by a Southern California man tracked him around the state, failing at one attempt to kill him before shooting him to death near Candlestick Park, authorities said Wednesday.
Attorneys for the couple say that they tried everything to rescue their daughter from Calvin Sneed, a 22-year-old alleged gang member from Compton (Los Angeles County), but that they didn't kill him.
Prosecutors, however, say that when Barry Gilton and his longtime girlfriend, Lupe Mercado, couldn't get their 17-year-old daughter back through legitimate means, they turned to premeditated murder.
Gilton, 38, and Mercado, 37, appeared in court Wednesday on murder and other charges for allegedly shooting Sneed in the Bayview neighborhood in the early hours of June 4.
The couple have been together since middle school and live with their three other children in San Francisco. Their daughter disappeared some time ago and after searching for her, Gilton and Mercado discovered that she was turning tricks and that Sneed was her pimp, their attorneys said.
"They had gone out to local police agencies, agencies in Southern California - they had even tried talking to national organizations," said Eric Safire, Gilton's attorney. "Every place they turned to turned them away."