August 2014

Crime

Keith Burbank

By Keith Burbank


 The San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) has responded to recent shootings and homicides in the nearby Bayview District with additional resources, according to Lieutenant Valerie Matthews, who served as acting district captain while Captain Robert O’Sullivan was away from the station during the second half of July. Between July 1 and July 8, the district experienced four homicides and five additional shootings. In the wake of the violence, SFPD has deployed at least three additional two-person nighttime patrols, and is using decoy bikes to capture criminals who may be involved in more serious crimes.

 “We’re taking a no-nonsense approach,” Matthews said. “We’ve saturated this district with resources to get a handle on crime and make people feel safe.”

The additional officers were transferred from other districts. According to Matthews, the department will reassess Bayview’s needs this month, which could result in a reduction in nighttime patrols, depending on conditions throughout the City.

A June homicide occurred on the 1000 block of Connecticut Street; another shooting that didn’t result in a death took place on July 3 on the 900 block of the same street. In that incident two people were shot with a handgun. A 32-year-old male was wounded in the hand; a 10-year-old was shot in the foot. A van took both victims to San Francisco General Hospital for treatment before police arrived at the scene. No additional information was available about the victims at press time. Police have two suspects in the shooting, but haven’t made any arrests. One is described as a black male, 15 to 18 years old, wearing a grey hat and black jacket. Police didn’t have a description of the other suspect, but the department has a vehicle in its possession that it’s processing for evidence.

 Matthews noted that SFPD has worked to remove guns from the community — 135 weapons to date — by executing search warrants, probable cause stops, and through the efforts of plainclothes officers. The lieutenant downplayed the importance of gun buyback programs because many of the people turning in firearms as a result of those initiatives haven’t taken their weapons out of their home for years. “You want the people who are walking around with them,” the lieutenant said.

 Emily Weinstein, of Bridge Housing, which is redeveloping the Potrero Annex-Terrace housing complexes, noted that summer is usually a time when shooting incidences increase. Bridge Housing is in conversations with the Mayor’s Office of Housing to develop a safety strategy for the development.

Police are asking anyone with information about the recent crimes to call the Bayview District’s anonymous tip line at 822.8147.

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