Posts Tagged ‘SFPD’

Old SFPD Crown Vics Never Die, They Just Go OUT OF SERVICE

Tuesday, February 10th, 2015

I don’t think this SFPD Ford Crown Victoria will be with us much longer:

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The funny thing is that I’ve been seeing a lot of civilianized former police cars on the streets of San Francisco and I can’t tell them from the merely out-of-service SFPD rides.

Anyway, all of the SFPD’s Crown Vics are not long for this world – they’re not going to get driven for decades the way some SFGov trucks are. No no, iconic Crown Vics, both the 80’s-style origami kind and the swoopier 90’s-style rounded kind, will soon be gone.

Last time I drove one was when Hertz gave me a “free” “upgrade” to a “premium” rent-a-car. It cost me more on gas, but you can’t say a Crown Vic is uncomfortable* to drive – it’s a barcalounger on wheels.

Soon enough, all our CV’s will be OOS.

*Unlike, say, the Toyota Camry “CE” stripper I rented one time. Yish.

Look Who Else was Doing Chalk Ads on the Sidewalks of San Francisco: Paramount Pictures – “What is CLOVERFIELD? 1-18-08″

Monday, February 9th, 2015

This one flew under the radar, AFAIK:

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Seven years later, here in 2015, you can’t get away this kind of thing anymore…

Uber Beats Lyft Again! – They Both Put Illegal Chalk Ads on Our Sidewalks, But Only Lyft Gets Busted – Plus, a Shakedown

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

A couple years back I passed by this scene on Market, so then I contacted the Uber people by email on my cell…

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…and I was all, “Can you do that? I don’t think you can do that.”

Why? Because it’s a chalk ad on a Frisco sidewalk and that aint kosher. I mean, I didn’t know for sure, maybe somebody had approved this and the Uber people had permits, who knows. I was simply “issue-spotting,” as they say.

So then, a half-hour later, the Uberers had these ads hastily obliterated, more or less, as best they could.

And that was that, back in 2013.

And now comes Lyft in 2015 with hopsc0tch chalk on the Streets of San Francisco:

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Except that SFGov is now lowering the boom on Lyft.

(And there might be some shakedown to take money from Lyft to give it to those ugly “SF Beautiful,” people, who are now infamous for suing the City and County of San Francisco? That sounds wrong.)

Anyway, Uber beats Lyft, once again.

NIMBY’s vs. the SFMTA: Local Objections to New Traffic Signals on McAllister at Broderick and Scott for the 5 Fulton

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

This effort appears to be similar to the SFMTA’s attempt to add traffic signals on Haight at Scott and Pierce.

This isn’t the worst example of NIMBYism, but I’d say it’s fairly alarmist, fairly absurd.

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I’ll just say that, generally speaking, it’s generally harder to get around town these days by car, by bike and by MUNI, compared with ten or twenty years ago. Part of this has to do with our newer, absurdly-wide sidewalks, designed for pedestrian “comfort.”

And yet, most ped and cyclist deaths in San Francisco involve fault from the peds and cyclists. Here’s 2014:

The Police Department found that in the 17 pedestrian deaths, drivers were responsible for eight and pedestrians were responsible for nine. Bicyclists were responsible in all three instances when they died.” 

(I should do a video on how to be a pedestrian in SF. It might involve some jaywalking but it would also involve extreme alertness on behalf of peds. You see, the way to prevent a lot of ped deaths in SF would be to get inside their heads to see what’s going wrong.)

IMO, the SFMTA should leave McAllister alone and then start taking out as many bus stops as politically possible.

I’ll tell you, not that many cyclists pass by Broderick and McAllister compared with Scott and McAllister, it seems, owing to geography. So looking at McAllister and Scott, it seems that the lights will be timed against cyclists using FULTON DIVISADERO MCALLISTER eastbound as an alternative to the already-overcrowded Wiggle route to get from the Golden Gate Park Panhandle to the Financh.

So for my own selfish reasons, I’d prefer that MUNI not make these changes, but who am I to stand in their way? What the MUNI people are saying is that we’ll all be better off overall, and 40 seconds each way each day will add up to millions of seconds, eventually.

In conclusion, meh. If MUNI wants to put in lights, we should let them do it.

Jetta vs. Jetta Head-On at Turk and Stanyan Near USF the Night Before Classes Begin

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

King-American hauled off to UC at least one Jetta occupant:

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The area around USF seems more like a college town these days, with tons of stus milling about the surrounding blocks, as compared with a couple decades back – IDK why, perhaps that’s just my impression…

Corrupt Twitterloin Update: “Beyond Chron” “Editor” and SFGov Contractor Randy Shaw Strongly Objects to SFPD’s Redistricting Plan

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

So, taxpayer spending on the ineffective Tenderloin Housing Clinic empire is up 2000% the past couple decades and what has that gotten us? Why don’t other cities do things the way we do in the Tenderloin – why is SF so unique in this regard. Why doesn’t Randy Shaw lay out how his operations benefit the city of San Francisco? No, not interested in doing that, Randy? Oh, but you sometimes spend your time threatening to sue the San Francisco Chronicle, the very “Chron” you’ve promised to get us “Beyond?” And you’re too busy singing the praises of San Francisco’s weakest-willed Mayor since … forever? OK fine.

Let’s check in on the latest in the Twitterloin*

“SF’S FOCUS TURNS TO CRIME”

One assumes this is Randy Shaw being aspirational, as they say. For example, here’s Randy Shaw from 2007: “By the summer of 2008, going “uptown” in San Francisco will mean heading to the Tenderloin.” But that’s not what uptown meant in 2008. And it’s not what it means now in 2015. So that’s just an example why whenever Randy Shaw says something, it’s not true. Randy Shaw says that the focus of the entire City and County of San Francisco is now turning to the topic of crime in 2015 – that means that the focus of the entire City and County of San Francisco is NOT now turning to the topic of crime in 2015, it’s just what Randy wants people to believe, for some reason.

“San Francisco’s economy is booming. But many are upset about crime. This is particularly true in the Tenderloin, where residents, merchants, workers, and thousands of children confront public drug dealing on a daily basis.

Public drug dealing from the residents of the residential hotels promoted by … Randy Shaw.

Why does the city allow such flagrantly illegal activities?

I don’t know, like why does the city throw $20 million a year down the Randy Shaw rathole?

After all, the Tenderloin is finally bouncing back from fifty years of decline and there are rising expectations for its future.

Again, if Randy Shaw says that the Twitterloin is bouncing back, that means that’s what he says all the time, going back decades, and it means that it’s not true. You’ll just have to take his word about expectations, and who has them.

It used to be that the Tenderloin attracted drug dealers because the city allowed them to do business there. It was a crime “containment zone,” with the entire criminal justice system backing a policy which forced low-income residents to walk down unsafe streets.

Well, that’s still kind of the case now, right Randy?

Mayor Ed Lee made it clear after taking office that the Tenderloin’s days as a crime containment zone were over.

But it’s still a containment zone, right? Hey, did I mention about how much money the Randy Shaw Twitterloin empire gets from SFGov every year? What does he do for that money? Wouldn’t we be better off just stopping giving him all that money and starting over? And shouldn’t City workers be doing Randy’s job?

And his intervention, along with resident activism, resulted in the biggest positive transformation of any single block in San Francisco.

So isn’t this where Randy Shaw should mention that he’s a government contractor from Berkeley and that’s why he sings the praises of who(m)ever is the Mayor of San Francisco? No, OK. And BTW, the unit block of Turk hasn’t really been “transformed.” It’s just where the Randy Shaw empire has a storefront, that’s why it’s such a BFD to RS.

This was through the elimination of over 100 drug dealers who used to work daily on the first block of Turk Street.

Elimination? Were they all executed by Ed Lee? Oh no, they’re still around, and some of them live in hotels of the Randy Shaw empire? OK fine.

On January 28 at 6pm at the Kelly Cullen Community Center at 220 Golden Gate, the Police Commission holds a hearing on proposed new boundaries for the Tenderloin police district. The Police Commission faces a choice between two very different visions for the Tenderloin’s future. In the vision backed by nearly all residents, merchants, workers and community stakeholders, the new boundaries will keep the Tenderloin together and target police resources where public drug dealing regularly occurs.

All right, now here’s real life: Most residents of the Tenderloin, nearly all of them, aren’t objecting to the SFPD redistricting itself as it sees fit. And I’m not sure what Randy means when he talks of the new boundaries. The new boundaries are what the SFPD is proposing, it’s what Randy Shaw super doesn’t like.

In the vision embodied in the SFPD’s proposal, the national Uptown Tenderloin Historic District is divided among three police districts.

But there isn’t any “national Uptown Tenderloin Historic District,” not IRL. That’s just a designation that Randy Shaw wanted.

It takes historic Tenderloin SROs like the Hotel Union at 811 Geary, the Hartland Hotel at 909 Geary, and the nearby Elk Hotel at 670 Eddy, and puts them outside the Tenderloin police district.

So what, Randy? How does it matter? Hey, don’t you live in Berkeley?

At the same time that core blocks in the Tenderloin are excluded from the “Tenderloin” station, the new district adds shoplifting-heavy Westfield Cente. It is located at 5th and Market, well outside the Tenderloin. The new “Tenderloin” station includes Market Street as far down as 3rd Street and  continues to Market and Van Ness before heading south as far as the intersection of Mission and South Van Ness.

What’s the obsession with maps? Why should the SFPD concern itself with what a Berkeley resident thinks about maps?

Critics of the SFPD plan understand that it is only a draft, and that the January 28 hearing is designed for public feedback.

It’s what the cops want, so shouldn’t they get it? Is there some sort of constitutional issue here? I don’t think so. So you let the cops do the job as they see fit. We want the cops to perform well, right? So why micromanage them? The “draft” map is exactly what they want, right? Oh, Gentle Reader, you have a beef with the SFPD over Some Other Issue? Well that’s different than redistricting, right? Let’s say you don’t want the SFPD to institute an unconstitutional Stop and Frisk program, you know, like the one that Mayor Ed Lee proposed after coming back from New York. Opposing something like Stop and Frisk is not micromanaging, not at all. But nitpicking over district borders is.

Because Tenderloin folks (myself included) were not paying attention in 2007, we allowed Little Saigon (Larkin from Eddy to O’Farrell) to be excluded from the Tenderloin district boundaries drawn that year.

Randy Shaw, you isn’t “Tenderloin folk,” you is longtime mansion-dwelling Berkeley Hills folk, right? Who cares what the borders of the Tenderloin are considered to be? Why does it matter?

If Westfield Center joins the still under construction Market Street Place in the Tenderloin District, the crime priorities of Abercrombie & Fitch, Nordstrom’s and J Crew will prevail over drug dealing on Leavenworth Street.

Well that’s what Randy Shaw says, but it’s not true.

Police will not ignore powerful retail interests whose sales taxes fuel the economy in order to protect seniors and kids walking on Leavenworth Street from drug dealing.

Is this what they call “framing?” IDK. It’s something, anyway. Are there a lot of cops patrolling the malls in SF? I don’t think so.

No police chief is going to throw big national retail chains under the bus by refusing to allocate police to arrest shoplifters. 

Or local chains, or convenience stores – pretty much if you call the SFPD to haul away shoplifters, they’ll go and haul them away, right?

Randy Shaw is Editor of Beyond Chron. His book, The Tenderloin: Sex, Crime and Resistance in the Heart of San Francisco, will be out this spring.

Oh, there’s sex in the Twitterloin? And there’s crime in the Twitterloin? Wow, thanks for writing the book, Randy. I can hardly wait for it…

*And that’s a New York Times-approved word. How will Randy Shaw occupy his time in the future, will he start up a Beyond Times newspaper and install himself as Editor-For-Life?

A Possible Defense for the Famous Red Light Running SFMTA MUNI Bus Driver in Golden Gate Park

Monday, January 26th, 2015

Here’s the sitch.

But you can’t actually see the bus driver run the red in this video:

Is there an all-red phase in the signal timing of this intersection? I assume so, but I don’t know.

The yellow line shown is about 200 feet long. It’s possible that a MUNI bus could enter the intersection on a yellow and then take six or seven seconds to clear it.

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Cars going the other way need to wait for traffic legally in the intersection to clear, under CA law, so even though you have a green light that doesn’t mean you necessarily have the right of way.

Car drivers, particularly those with a running start, need to be mindful of this.

Remembering 2012, When the SFPD Picked Up Enforcing Traffic Laws on Market Street, One Bike Rider at a Time

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

It looked like this:

In the 80’s, 90’s, and early aughts, bikes were practically invisible to cops on Market Street, except for the occasional* Commute Clot / Critical Mass event. But these days, the SFPD seems to consider enforcing traffic laws on bike riders a higher priority,** for whatever reason.

Anyway, back in the day, you’d just have to sit and wait for your ticket to get written up, but nowadays you can play Tetris on your iPhone to make the minutes fly by, as you can see.

Cops generally prefer to give tickets to car drivers for various reasons. One of them is that the protest rate is many many times greater from cyclists than drivers. So the theory that this recent push to enforce traffic laws on bike riders came from the top down sounds right to me.

*And especially except that time in ’97, when Mayor Willie Brown decided to “do something” about CM. A hundred-something people got ticketed / detained and had their bikes impounded, most of them getting penned in at Sacramento Montgomery for running a red light.

**Think it was in 2012 or 2013 that I got detained by two Crown-Vic driving SFPD on Market near 6th. Pretty sure it was just after the #5 Fulton line was rerouted to take McAllister almost all the way to Market, and I’d noticed two #5’s jammed up in front of the Hibernia Bank building along with three marked and two unmarked Crown Victorias within a block or so.  I was thinking, well, this certainly is unusual so it looks like the cops are dealing with something around 7th and Market, maybe involving the buses, so I’ll just keep on moving inbound by taking McAllister all the way to Market and then I’ll cross over Market after the SFPD radio car goes off east on Market. Except the car slowed down waiting for me to cross over to the right side of Market. I couldn’t understand how I was getting all this attention from the SFPD. Anyway, flashing lights, a request from a rookie for my “license and registration” (I looked at his partner, who sort of chuckled – I don’t think the rookie had ever pulled over a bike rider before),  a quick warrant check for me, an admonishment to use the correct side of the road, and I then I was off again. And all the while, some photographer guy recognized me and started taking pictures from a traffic island. (He never sent them to me, oh well.) I’ll tell you, I moved to the Tenderloin back in the 1980’s and I’d been California stopping at stop signs and red lights around and on Market for more than two decades before I got any kind of attention from the SFPD. And I thought, oh, things are different now… 

Hayes Valley Shooting of Jan 9, 2015: Four Dead in Stolen Honda – Biggest Mass Killing in SF Since 2012 – 20 Minutes of SFPD Audio

Saturday, January 10th, 2015

I can’t recall a bigger mass killing in San Francisco since the Ingleside Howth Street Home Invasion of 2012 and, before then, the 101 California Street Shooting of 1993.

Here’s 20 minutes of audio from @ScannerSays.

(“10-30″ means that the car is suspected stolen.)

MISSING: Steven Harris – Last Seen at the California Academy of Sciences Jan 6th – Last Ping at Market / Van Ness

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

[UPDATE: “STEVEN HAS BEEN FOUND. He is currently with family.]

OK, here’s the report as far as I know:

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Steven Harris, went missing around 11:00 AM on Tuesday, January 6th, 2015, last seen leaving his job at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. His home is in San Bruno, and his last phone ping was at Market & Van Ness. His family is trying to get any sort of media attention to help bring Steven home.

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