Deadly June in San Francisco Results in 68 Arrests During Citywide Sweep

Written by Mariana Barrera. Posted in Crime, News

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Published on June 29, 2012 with 3 Comments

San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr held a press conference today at the Hall of Justice to announce the arrests of 68 wanted suspects during a multi-agency citywide sweep in an effort to stem a recent spike in gun related homicides. Photos by Luke Thomas.

By Mariana Barrera

June 28, 2012

With ten gun-related homicides in June adding to a tally of 38 in 2012, San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr announced today the arrests of 68 wanted suspects resulting from a multi-agency sweep of the city.

“We’ve definitely had a bad month,” Suhr said during a press conference held at the Hall of Justice with several firearms seized from enforcement operations and mug shots of arrestees on display, “and we don’t want to have another one.”

Of the scores of suspects arrested during a ten-hour sting operation on June 27, 53 suspects were booked on felony charges or felony warrants, 18 of which are on active parole. Fifteen suspects were booked on misdemeanor charges or misdemeanor warrants.

“Obviously we are taking this very seriously,” Suhr said. “Any level of gun violence on the streets of San Francisco is not okay.”

Suhr was unable to provide an estimate of the number of illegal guns in circulation in San Francisco.

“A lot,” he said.

With San Fransisco’s homicide rate averaging 47 killings per year between 2009 and 2011, authorities are concerned that unless police act proactively, San Francisco’s 2012 homicide rate is set to double by year’s end.  From 2004 to 2008, San Francisco’s homicide rate averaged 93 killings per year.

The drop in homicides between 2009 and 2011 has been largely credited to targeted allocations of resources utilizing crime mapping data to identify hotspot zones, and deploying foot patrols and other strategic tools of community policing to deter crime.

Asked to comment on whether a controversial “Stop and Frisk” policy being discussed and proposed by Mayor Ed Lee would be helpful in reducing gun-related violence and homicides, Suhr told Fog City Journal, “The San Francisco Police Department makes all their detentions based on reasonable suspicion. All these arrests were made based on probable cause.”

Pressed further, Suhr said, “I believe Stop and Frisk is actually the brand name of a program that the New York Police Department used. We do not use that program here. Again, all our detentions are based on reasonable suspicion.”

Asked to comment on whether such a policy would open the flood gates to racial profiling, Suhr said, “That has been raised as a concern with the program as applied in New York City. We do not racially profile here in San Francisco and never will.”

“We detain people based on reasonable suspicion – and when we pat search people, it’s for officer safety sake,” Suhr said.

San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr.

The ongoing monthly preemptive operation is being led by the Violence Reduction Team and utilized officers from District stations. It is being conducted in partnership with several law enforcement agencies including the Sheriff’s Department, US Marshals Office, Central Warrants Bureau and the Department of Emergency Management, among others.

“Targeted enforcement such as fugitive apprehension is a key piece of our violence reduction strategy,” Suhr stressed.

Much of the enforcement operation is being focused in disadvantaged communities in the southeast quadrant of the city where some of the violence, including gang-related shootings, has occurred recently. While fatal shootings are up, non-fatal shootings are down 10 percent compared to last year, said Deputy Chief Kevin Cashman.

Police are asking for the public to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious activity.

“We are asking the public to help us,” Suhr said. “Do not think that anything is too outside the box. We will try anything so that not one more person is injured on the streets of San Francisco.”

Police Chief Greg Suhr was joined at the press conference by John O’Keefe from the US Marshals Office (Northern District), SFPD Commander of Operations John Loftus and SFPD Deputy Chief of Operations Kevin Cashman.

Luke Thomas contributed to this report.

Mariana Barrera

I was born in Mexico on July 2, 1992, and have lived in Salinas, CA all my life. As far back as I can remember, my parents have always been busy people, so my brother and I didn't get to see them as much as we would've liked to. My dad works in agriculture, and has always worked long hours and left for months at a time due to his job. My mom was always around a lot more, but when I turned thirteen she opened a mexican restaurant, and was around less. Growing up, I spent my weekends at that restaurant and up until my junior year of high school I thought I wanted to be a chef. I was accidentally placed in a Journalism class,and that's where I found my true passion. My very strict, but motivating journalism teacher taught me what he knew about the craft, and lead me towards the Mosaic Journalism Workshop during the summer of 2009 There I had my first real-world journalism experience, reporting for a two-week summer program where I got to work with real journalists. The following year I became editor-in-chief of my high school's news paper, and enjoyed it so much that I decided to drop my life-long dream of becoming a chef to pursue journalism. Today I am studying Journalism at San Francisco State University with the hopes of one day becoming a well-rounded journalist.

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Comments for Deadly June in San Francisco Results in 68 Arrests During Citywide Sweep are now closed.

  1. great Article Mariana .
    Dari 🙂

  2. This could make a great infographic.

  3. Any possibility of being more specific than “the Southeast side”?  Are you talking about D10 or more?