Alioto and Delagnes appear on the O'Reilly Factor
Chronicle Use of Force report, Board of Supervisors
Bush impeachment resolution debated
February 13, 2006, 8:00 p.m.
Former San Francisco Supervisor Angela Alioto and Police Officer's
Association President, Gary Delagnes, were invited guests on the
O'Reilly Factor today to answer 'no-spin-zone' questions from
Bill O'Reilly, the show's host.
The San Francisco Chronicle's recent Use of Force series of reports
and the Board of Supervisor's resolution calling for a full investigation,
impeachment, or resignation of President Bush and Vice President
Cheney, were the hotly debated topics of discussion.
A transcript of the exchange follows:
O'Reilly: You feel the San Francisco Chronicle is wrong,
erroneous, picking on the cops? What are they doing?
Delagnes: This has been about a five-year process of battering
the police department every chance they can get. I can only assume
that they believe it sells papers in a place like San Francisco.
We're the most diverse police department in the United States.
Over 45% of our members are either gay, female, or people of color.
We're the most scrutinized police department in the United States
with four civilian agencies that investigate us on any given day,
so we're having a little hard time understanding why the Chronicle
feels that now is the time to once again come after our cops.
The Chronicle asserts that roughly
100 officers out of a force of 2200 account for 25% of violence
force, used on the streets of San Francisco, and that those people
aren't monitored properly because you don't have the computer
systems to do it. Are they wrong?
Delagnes: Yes they are very much wrong. The reporting
statistics and the style of reporting for use of force violations
is different in San Francisco than any other place that I know
of in the United States. For example, if you have a complaint
of pain because the handcuffs are too tight, in San Francisco
you actually have to make a notation of that in a police report
and in what we call a use of force log, so I think you can see
that would most certainly skew the statistics.
O'Reilly: Do you think the San Francisco Chronicle is
out to get the police, to demoralize the police? Do they want
a kinder gentler police force? What's the motive behind the report?
Delagnes: I think there's a certain segment of San Francisco
that doesn't even want law enforcement in San Francisco. I think
the Chronicle is trying to sell papers. They have a diminishing
readership and this is the way they think it's going to work to
O'Reilly (interrupting): All right, they're pandering
to their far left base. How do you see it Angela?
Alioto: I think that's absolutely ridiculous. I think
Gary Delagnes is in total denial. The San Francisco Police Department
is one of the best departments in the nation. We have about 5
to 7 per cent of those officers who use excessive force. They
need to be investigated. They need to be punished and indeed,
in my opinion, if that excessive force is found to be true they
need to be exited from the San Francisco police department.
O'Reilly (interrupting): Mr. Delagnes asserts there are
four civilian oversight committees in order to do that, plus internal
affairs, so what's the problem?
Alioto: The problem is San Francisco's never had an accountability
system like Mayor Gavin Newsom suggested yesterday. He's absolutely
right. We've got to initiate that as the Chronicle suggested.
O'Reilly (interrupting): If you have the four civilian
oversights, and you have the internal affairs, what else do you
need? I mean, that sounds like a lot of oversight to me.
Alioto: We have too much leniency going on
O'Reilly (interrupting): Too much leniency?
Alioto: Leniency meaning, with all due respect to Gary
Delagnes, a union that fights for people that stay in who have
(pause), 28 prior incidences of excessive force.
O'Reilly (interrupting): But how pervasive is this? This
is what I'm trying to get at. Look, every police force has bad
people on it. I mean everybody knows that. But if you have 100
officers out of 2200, that's not a lot. I mean that's less than
5%, and the Chronicle doesn't assert that they did anything. All
they say is that these guys, and they could be, you know, in the
worst neighborhoods in the worse kind of stuff, narcotics or whatever,
are responsible for a high rate of force violations. Look, you
know, you've been on the Board of Supervisors, you know what police
work is. If you're down in the sewer or the gutter with these
people, they're gonna throw everything they can at you, particularly
if you're good, if you're a good cop. They're going to try and
Alioto (interrupting): I not only know what police work
is, my son Joe, before he was a police commissioner, was a San
Francisco Police officer
Alioto (continuing): at 19 years old. I'm fully aware
of that, but Bill, you surely are not suggesting that we just
let the 100 be 100 (unintelligible).
O'Reilly (interrupting): I'm not sure
It's not many
and I'm not sure what the big deal is out of that. Most other
police forces say 'gee, just a hundred
that's not so bad.'
Alioto: No, but do something about the 100 who have excessive
O'Reilly: But I don't see that the San Francisco Chronicle
has leveled any charges against any of these hundred, have they
Delagnes: Well, that's absolutely right and in a City
as democratic as San Francisco we've decided to convict these
people before they've had a trial. That's interesting. The OCC,
which is the civilian agency that overseas the San Francisco police
department - I don't think I have to tell you where their politics
lie - they were only able to sustain 38 excessive force complaints
in 2004 out of 1.1 million calls for service. That's 1 in every
27,500 calls for service.
O'Reilly (interrupting): All right
I didn't see
enough hard data to warrant the big brouhaha. Now I gotta ask
you this Angela
and we appreciate
Alioto: (interrupting) I've gotta have one last word here
on this issue.
O'Reilly: Ok, we'll give you the last word, Angela, but
let's get to the impeachment
Alioto: The individual incidences have been investigated,
is the concept of investigating the aggregate. Has this one officer
with 22 priors, should he still be on the streets?
O'Reilly (interrupting): All right. I can't get into one
guy. Angela, we have a minute left. Doesn't it make your City
look stupid to have the Board of Supervisors say President Bush
should be impeached? It's just dumb.
Alioto: You know that is so San Francisco. With all due
respect I wrote the first smoking ban in 1993 and Ireland just
copied us. You will see that the rest of the country will follow
us once we do this. It is extremely important to note San Francisco
believes this is not a justified war. We should not be in Iraq.
We should bring home all of our men and women from Iraq.
O'Reilly (interrupting): All right. I don't think the
rest of the country want San Francisco calling the shots on the
war on terror Angela. Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe I'm wrong now (shouting
over Alioto). I don't know if they want Gavin Newsom out there
in charge of homeland security. Call me crazy. All right counselor,
Gary, thanks very much.