OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) — Prosecutors made three arrests in connection to the death of 1-year-old Jasper Wu. The toddler was killed in the crossfire of a gang shooting on Interstate-880 in Oakland in 2021.
Alameda County prosecutors announced a major break in the case during a press conference held Thursday afternoon in the Oakland courthouse.
Three San Francisco street gang members have been arrested and charged with Jasper’s murder, District Attorney Nancy O’Malley told reporters. The three arrested men were identified as Trevor Green, Ivory Bivins, and Johnny Jackson.
“Little Jasper was just 23 months old. Like responsible parents, he was strapped in his car seat. He was sound asleep. Suddenly, the unthinkable happened. He died instantly. How could this horrific tragedy happen? It happened because two rival gangs were having a rolling gun battle across a freeway at 2 o’clock in the afternoon,” O’Malley said.
Despite the triple arrest, O’Malley acknowledged, “This horrific tragedy is a parent’s worst nightmare. The horrific nightmare for the Wu family, and their baby being killed in such a senseless and violent manner, can never be reconciled.”
Jasper was just a few weeks away from turning 2 years old when tragedy struck on November 6, 2021 at 2:10 p.m. His mother was driving home to Fremont when a gun battle broke out between two cars on I-880 near the Filbert Street exit, investigators said.
Green and Bivins were traveling in a dark Infiniti. Jackson and another man, Keison Lee, were in a dark gray Nissan Altima. “A shot fired from the Infiniti missed the intended target, the Nissan Altima. Instead, it traveled across the highway into oncoming southbound traffic, and went through the windshield of the vehicle Jasper was riding in,” prosecutors wrote.
Jasper, who was sleeping inside his mother’s white Lexus sedan, was shot in the head. The toddler was declared deceased at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital.
The shooters were members of rival San Francisco street gangs, O’Malley said.
Lee, who was the driver of the Nissan Altima, died last month, O’Malley said.
Lee was shot during the gun battle that killer Jasper. “The driver was shot in the lower back. While being treated at San Francisco General Hospital, Lee’s hands were tested for gunshot residue. He admitted to being shot on the freeway. He has since been killed in what is believed to be more gang (violence),” O’Malley said.
Last month, Lee was shot again — this time fatally — in a separate gang shooting.
O’Malley said it took “remarkable case investigative work” to solve this case. Jasper’s death was one of several high-profile highway killings in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2021. Bay Area highway shootings are frustratingly difficult for detectives to solve.
The District Attorney and CHP officers thanked witnesses who came forward and helped piece together what happened to Jasper. Witnesses who called 911 confirmed that the two vehicles were firing at each other on the freeway.
California Highway Patrol officers found bullet casings on I-880 and determined that the murder weapon was an automatic assault rifle.
“The Wu family has suffered an unspeakable loss. The depraved indifference shown by these suspects shocks us all and cannot be tolerated,” said CHP Golden Gate Division Chief Ezery Beauchamp. “Bringing these suspects to answer for their crimes is the result of an incredible team effort, and we are grateful for our allied agency partners that worked with us throughout the investigation.”
Trevor Green, Ivory Bivins, and Johnny Jackson are in custody. Jackson was arrested on Wednesday and he is scheduled to be arraigned Friday in an Alameda County courtroom
Green, Bivins, and Jackson were each charged with murder, shooting at an occupied vehicle, and possession of a firearm by a felon. Bivins and Green were also charged with conspiracy to commit a crime, as well as criminal street gang conspiracy.
Late last year, Jasper’s loved ones held a traditional Buddhist ceremony at Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland and burned some of Jasper’s toys, sending them up to heaven.
Jasper’s father and a family spokesman attended Thursday’s news conference. The Wu family is feeling both joy and sadness this week.
Family spokesman Carl Chan said, “They’re very happy and excited to see that there’s a press conference talking about their case. And but at the same time, they feel that they’re bringing back some memory of day one of what happened on the freeway.”