The San Francisco Police Department has steadfastly tried to ignore back-to-back cover stories in the Bay Guardian and SF Weekly that detailed the campaign of harassment and brutality against nightclubs and parties in SoMa by a pair of undercover cops.
Imminent legal actions against San Francisco, its Police Department, and the California Department of Alcohol Beverage Control could reveal whether a pair of undercover agents went rogue in harassing nightclubs and aggressively busting parties or whether they were acting at the direction of top officials.
Attorney Mark Webb – whose work on a racketeering lawsuit against the policing agencies was the subject of cover stories in the Guardian and the SF Weekly – told us that on Monday, he plans to file that racketeering claim against the city (which will then become a lawsuit if the city rejects it, as it routinely does) and a related lawsuit in Superior Court involving the rough, unnecessary arrest of bartender Javier Magallon and harassment of Mike Quan, owner of The Room, Playbar, and Mist. Narrated surveillance video associated with the case was posted on YouTube yesterday. Read more »
Jane Warner, or “Officer Jane” as she’s known throughout the Castro, had a rough Christmas Eve. It started when Warner, a San Francisco Patrol Special Police officer who was out walking the foot beat, was alerted that a fight had broken out at Trigger, a bar on Market Street. When she arrived, she says she encountered a drunk and belligerent man. “He got more excited and charged the doormen, he pushed me, I pushed him back, and I said, ‘You’re under arrest,’” Warner told the Guardian shortly after the incident occurred. “He started to walk away from me, I drew my baton, I hit him twice, and he turned around and he hit me and I went to block his punch and he broke my arm,” at which point she fell to the ground in pain. “It cracked the bone right between the elbow and the shoulder,” she said. Read more »
The San Francisco Police Commission came to its senses last night, and -- after an immense amount of work by community activists and Commissioner Petra DeJesus -- voted 4-3 not to move forward with a plan for giving the cops Tasers.
A lot of the discussion revolved around the safety of the stun guns; zapping someone with 50,000 volts can cause injury and sometimes death. But there’s another issue here, and the pres coverage only touched on it.Read more »
You can say this for Police Chief George Gascon: He's not shy. He's pushing so many things, on so many fronts, that it's hard to keep track, and some of them are real problems. One example: The Feb. 17th Police Commission meeting, where Gascon paraded a bunch of experts to talk about how great it would be if the SF cops had tasers.Read more »