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San Francisco jury hangs on murder charges in 2017 Twin Peaks killing

Photographer Ed French was robbed and shot to death on Twin Peaks in 2017. | Adobe Stock

A San Francisco jury has found a man and woman guilty of robbery charges in connection with the 2017 killing of a photographer on San Francisco’s Twin Peaks. They were acquitted on a charge of inflicting injury on an elder likely to cause great bodily injury, and the jury hung on the charge of murder.

Lamonte Mims and Fantasy Decuir stood accused of shooting 71-year-old photographer and film location scout Edward French to death while robbing him of his camera and wallet in the early morning hours of July 16, 2017. Decuir was accused of pulling the trigger.

After more than five years, Mims and Decuir went to trial. On Monday, the jury found Mims guilty on three charges of second-degree robbery, possession of a firearm by a felon, contempt of court and two other theft charges. Jurors found Decuir guilty of two second-degree robbery charges and two other theft charges.

But the jury hung 10-2 in favor of guilty on the murder charge for both defendants, as well as on one of the second-degree robbery charges for Decuir.

The District Attorney’s Office plans to try both Mims and Decuir again on the murder charge, a spokesperson told The Standard.

French’s killing rattled San Francisco, raising questions about public safety. 

The fact that the shooting happened in Twin Peaks, a place popular with tourists for its panoramic views of the city, made the crime particularly shocking.

French’s sister also blamed the legal system for his death: Just days before the shooting, Mims had been arrested from custody after being picked up for having a gun while on felony probation.

The San Francisco Pretrial Detention Diversion Project, which creates risk assessments to help judges determine whether suspects should be released, had mistakenly placed Mims in a category that allows conditional release, the District Attorney’s Office told ABC7 Bay Area in 2017. 

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