Prosecutors Target Eight For Murder in Fatal Shooting of Oakland Mother

Chyemil Pierce, 30, was caught in the crossfire between rival gangs as she tried to protect her children

Alameda County prosecutors are trying to charge eight suspects for murder in a gang-related shooting last year that killed an Oakland mother as she protected her children from the gunfire.

During a preliminary hearing in the March 9, 2015, shooting death of 30-year-old Chyemil Pierce, prosecutors targeted eight suspects for murder. Defense attorney Bill Dubois is trying to prevent that.

"There is a lot of hearsay," Dubois said. "This case is based upon what he said and she said out on the corners in West Oakland."

The dispute started with two women fighting in the 2800 block of Chestnut Street, and as a crowd around them grew, gunfire erupted, according to witness accounts. Pierce had rushed out of her house to get her children out of harm's way when she was shot by crossfire between rival gangs.

All eight suspects appeared in court Thursday with attorneys. Dubois was representing Anthony Sims.

"It's very difficult," Dubois said. "Everything moves in agonizing slow motion. There are eight defendants, and there are 16 people for the defense."

As prosecutors try to prove they have enough evidence to go to trial, they’re expected to outline the evidence slowly, Dubois said.

"It's going to take weeks," he said.

Besides Sims, 21, the other defendants are Julian Ambrose, 18, Jerry Harbin, 31, Alex Davis, 26, Shelton McDaniels, 30, Michael Stills, 22, Joneria Reed, 38, and Dijon Ward, 22.

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