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EXCLUSIVE: Jasper Wu’s family voices concerns over murder suspects’ possible shorter sentences


Originally Published: 08 MAR 23 14:18 ETBy Dion Lim

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    FREMONT, California (KGO) -- The family of Jasper Wu, the toddler killed along I-880 in Oakland in November 2021, is expressing concern as a policy change within the Alameda County District Attorney's office could drastically change the sentencing in their case.

I sat down with An Wu and her husband Tuesday morning.

These days, they spend their time tending to their collection of succulents in the front yard and and trying to move on from the tragic events of November 6, 2021.

The family was driving along Interstate 880 in Oakland when their 23-month old son Jasper was hit and killed by what law enforcement call rolling gunfire between rival gangs.

We were there as family burned offerings at the site where it happened and at his funeral. A close family friend sat down with me in December, after three suspects were arrested.

"Of course, we were super relieved when we found our the suspect was in custody after 13 months," said Susan Xu.

Those feelings of relief though, have since been replaced by concern.

After meeting with the Alameda County District Attorney's office this week, on the same day they also visited Jasper's grave, they became aware of new guidelines which could drastically reduce sentencing for those arrested in their case.

"If that happens, if the new DA, that's the direction she goes lowering the sentencing what kind of message are we sending to the public," said An Wu, after wiping away tears.

I obtained an internal memo which indicates Price's intention to "bring balance back to sentencing and reduce recidivism"- by not allowing prosecutors to "file or require defendants plead to sentencing enhancements."

This includes for gang activity or gun possession.

Anthony Brass is a criminal defense attorney and explained why enhancements matter.

"An enhancement adds time to a sentence. For instance, if I rob someone it carries a certain penalty. If I rob someone with a gun, it adds 10, 20 years to the experience, to the sentence."

According to Brass, a gun enhancement where someone is hit and killed, could add the possibility of life behind bars.

Life is what the Wu family wants in their journey for justice.

Through her translator, An Wu said she did not "believe in second chances" and "doesn't believe lowering the sentence will somehow prevent them from doing this again."

As the Wu's continue to honor Jasper, they consider a permanent move out of California. There is too much trauma and fear over driving through Oakland these days.

But An Wu is not afraid of sharing her convictions in an effort to seek justice.

"This isn't the only case on them (the suspects). They did harmful things before, they did what they did to jasper and most likely they'll do it again."

While the Wu family say they'll never get over what happened to baby Jasper, whether it be a year from now, or anytime in the future, they do hope to one day have a big family and be happy.

I reached out to the Alameda County District Attorney's Office with questions about sentencing and Jasper Wu's case.

The public information officer told me Pamela Price would be available to answer questions at a 3 p.m. press conference on Tuesday.

ABC7 News was there, but Price left immediately afterwards.

A statement was sent to me at 3:52pm, writing: "The matter is under review by our team. DA Price is unavailable for the rest of the day for an interview."

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