San Diego

Supporters of Sagon Penn said Wednesday they will begin a petition drive to try to get the remaining charges against him dropped. Penn was tried for slaying a San Diego police officer and wounding another officer and a civilian.

The Sagon Penn Defense Committee, a group of legal, religious, political and community activists, also said it will hold a rally Saturday at the San Diego County Courthouse to protest the district attorney's decision to retry Penn on the unresolved charges.

Penn was found innocent July 26 of murder and attempted murder of the two police officers. The jury deadlocked on four lesser charges. Penn is scheduled to be retried Aug. 25. "We plan to collect thousands of signatures," Reiko Obata, spokeswoman for the committee, said. "We have made a difference throughout this case. It (a petition) does have an effect on the entire court system."

At Wednesday's press conference at the San Diego Neighborhood House and Community Center, Obata said the petition will be delivered to the district attorney's office.

The march and rally will be at 1 p.m. Saturday on Broadway and Front streets.

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