FILE - In this April 30, 2019 file photo, John T. Earnest appears for his arraignment hearing in San Diego. Prosecutors say Earnest opened fire during a Passover service at the Chabad of Poway synagogue on April 27, killing one woman and injuring three people, including the rabbi. A preliminary hearing for Earnest begins Thursday, Sept. 18, 2019, in state court and is expected to last up to two days. (Nelvin C. Cepeda/The San Diego Union-Tribune via AP, Pool, File)

Prosecutors seek trial for man charged with synagogue attack

September 19, 2019 - 12:13 am

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Prosecutors will have a recording of a 20-year-old's call to an emergency dispatcher and his online posts when they try to convince a judge that he should be put on trial for opening fire in a Southern California synagogue, killing one woman and injuring three people.

A preliminary hearing for John T. Earnest begins Thursday in state court in San Diego.

Earnest has pleaded not guilty to murder, attempted murder and arson tied to a mosque fire. The murder charge would make him eligible for the death penalty if convicted.

Court documents say the college student called 911 as he fled Chabad of Poway on April 27, saying, "I just shot up a synagogue," and that he did it because he believed Jews were destroying "the white race."

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