STOCKTON — A gun stolen from Stockton Mayor Anthony Silva’s home was linked to several crimes, including the killing of a 13-year-old, according to the District Attorney’s office.
The Beretta pistol, which is in the Stockton Police Department’s possession as evidence, was used in the Feb. 15, 2015 in a drive-by shooting which killed 13-year-old Rayshawn Harris. According to officials, Harris was standing in front of his home on South Sacramento Street around 7 a.m. when he was fatally shot.
There were no suspects identified in the shooting, but the investigation showed the shell casings were ejected from the stolen weapon. A witness described the shooter as an African American man wearing a grey sweater and white shoes.
The weapon, a .40 caliber Beretta Px4 Storm semi-automatic pistol which was reported stolen from Silva’s house two months after the shooting, was also used in two other criminal investigations.
Silva responded to FOX40 via text message Friday evening saying he’s heartbroken over the news.
“I feel terrible and I feel sick to my stomach. Obviously this was my worst possible fear. I will be in shock for a long time. It’s a horrible tragedy that will that will be on my mind and in my prayers forever. I will reach out to the family and do whatever I can. I have not been provided any details yet, so I only can react to what the news is claiming. Everyone please pray for Stockton.”
Silva, who later spoke with FOX40 as he was leaving to take 100 kids to his annual summer camp, said he was using his Morada home that was burglarized for storage and reported the burglary in March 2015.
“The neighborhood watch called me and said people are breaking into your hose there. I caught them at the robbery in progress and they slammed into the front of my car,” Silva recalled, acknowledging that there might have been other break-ins that weren’t noticed before that day.
He also had a 9mm pistol stolen from his current Spanos Park home during his 2015 Sister Cities trip to the Philippines. When presented with fact that few people have one gun stolen from one home, let alone two from two different homes, his response was, “I know.”
After Rayshawn was killed Silva was criticized for the lack of the security in the city, but relatives defended the mayor on Facebook.
Once hearing the mayor’s stolen gun was responsible for their loss, family members did not want to speak on camera Friday night, saying, only by phone, that they’re shocked.
Silva says he shares their outrage and sadness and wonders why his name was released when the names of other owners of stolen guns involved in crime aren’t.
But he didn’t want to comment on his theories just yet.
“For now, it’s just a time to say I’m sorry to the family, I’m praying for the victim and praying for Stockton that we can end the violence,” Silva said.
Silva’s stolen Beretta was also used Jan. 15, 2015 in a drive-by shooting at a home on East Church Street. The two residents in the home were not injured. Officials said eight .40 caliber and six 9 mm casings, which were fired by the stolen pistol, were recovered at the scene.
According to the DA’s records, the weapon was recovered June 9, 2016 after Stockton Police responded to a domestic violence call on Treetop Drive.
Officials are still investigating the cases, and encourage anyone with information call the Stockton Police Department at (209)937-8377.