Two people sitting in a courtroom.
Antonio Rodgers-Alcala, right, with his attorney Lawrence Strauss. Photo by Eleni Balakrishnan, Jan. 11, 2024.

Antonio Malik Rodgers-Alcala, a 21-year-old man accused of killing 18-year-old Damien González at the Mission Recreation Center this past August, is now represented by private attorney Bill Fazio, who ran for San Francisco District Attorney four times. 

“They actually contacted a colleague of mine, who was unable to proceed with the case for personal reasons, so he referred the case to me,” said Fazio, 76, in an interview after Friday’s hearing. 

Fazio — who ran for DA in 1995, 1999, 2003 and 2011 — took over the representation last week from attorney Lawrence Strauss, who is still representing Rodgers-Alcala in an armed robbery case that took place two months before González was shot dead.

Rodgers-Alcala, who is accused of shooting González five times on a second-floor basketball court at the Mission gym, was arrested on Dec. 28, and is still in custody in County Jail No. 3, according to the San Francisco Sheriff’s Office. He appeared in an orange inmate jumpsuit on Friday, and spoke in whispers with Fazio for a moment before the hearing began. 

Rodgers-Alcala waived his right to a speedy trial at Friday’s hearing, to allow Fazio more time to review the case.

“There’s a lot of discovery. There’s over 500 pages, and I don’t know what’s on the thumb drive [the District Attorney provided to Fazio in court on Friday] because I haven’t reviewed it yet, so I needed more time,” said Fazio.

About two dozen of González’s family members and friends appeared in the spectator area. Rodgers-Alcala, a resident of Daly City, according to the San Francisco Police Department, had no visible acquaintances to sit in on the Friday hearing.

Both parties will appear in court again on Feb. 28 for the murder charge. 

Antonio Malik Rodgers-Alcala, a man in a suit and tie, is smiling in front of a bookshelf.
Bill Fazio

Fazio has been an attorney since 1975. This includes 20 years in the San Francisco District Attorney’s office, 14 of which were spent prosecuting homicide cases. He was fired in 1995 by then-District Attorney Arlo Smith, just hours after Fazio announced his candidacy in that year’s San Francisco District Attorney’s race and became Smith’s competitor (Fazio later sued Smith and won).

Endorsed by local police officers in both 1995 and 1999, he drew supporters from the moderate camp of San Francisco.

In both years, he narrowly lost to Terence Hallinan, who billed himself as “America’s most progressive district attorney.”

After his ouster from the District Attorney’s office, Fazio started a private practice in San Francisco, and has been working as a criminal defense attorney ever since.

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REPORTER. Yujie Zhou is our newest reporter and came on as an intern after graduating from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism. She is a full-time staff reporter as part of the Report for America program that helps put young journalists in newsrooms. Before falling in love with the Mission, Yujie covered New York City, studied politics through the “street clashes” in Hong Kong, and earned a wine-tasting certificate in two days. She’s proud to be a bilingual journalist. Follow her on Twitter @Yujie_ZZ.

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  1. Campers,

    I voted for Fazio over Matt Gonzalez in 1998 cause I didn’t think Matt had a chance (he got 15% then like 80% in the Class of 2000 in D-5) and don’t know why I was angry with Hallinan.

    Best memory of Buzz was when the cops raided a North Beach Brothel at 3am they found him on a massage table saying it was the only time he could interview a client.

    What happened to our San Francisco Sex Scandals ??

    C’mon people, step it up !

    By decriminalizing Prostitution much as we did Gay Marriage.

    Go Giants !!


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