Help a Bernal Artist Find the Art That Was Stolen With Her Car


You might remember Neighbor Carrie Ann Plank; she played a starring role last April’s post about Bernal Heights artists at the Hunter’s Point Shipyard. Well, Neighbor Carrie Ann’s car was stolen on Saturday night, and some of her art was in it.  Grrrrrrrr.

She tells Bernalwood:

My car was stolen from in front of the house last night over on Bronte. I’m an artist, and unfortunately, several pieces of valuable artwork were inside the car.

Car thieves probably are not interested in art pieces, so I’m hoping they were dumped somewhere nearby. Can we put out a call to my fellow Bernal dwellers in case anyone sees them? I’m desperately hoping my good neighbors have some information that may lead to recovery! Additionally, I’m the artist in residence currently at Bullseye Glass and all of my notes and sketches were in the trunk. Would love to get those back too!

Fingers crossed! Thank you for the assist in getting the word out.

Here are the details:
2007 graphite Prius with a carseat, and here’s a few images of the missing work:




UPDATED: Active Shooter Killed by Police at St. Luke’s Construction Site


One of the sadder realities of contemporary life is the fact that the phrase “active shooter” has become a common expression used to describe deranged people who go on shooting rampages in public places. Last night, a frightening active shooter incident in northwest Bernal Heights ended when the SFPD killed a gunman who had stormed the St. Luke’s hospital construction site.

Here’s SFGate’s summary of what happened:

Police officers fatally shot an armed man who climbed to the sixth floor of a construction site in San Francisco’s Mission District on Wednesday and aimed one of his two guns at nearby St. Luke’s Hospital, authorities said.

The man fired at least one round before being shot to death, but police did not say whether that shot was directed at the adjacent hospital. No one was hit, police said.

The man, who wore white coveralls and appeared to be in his late 20s, ascended to the sixth of seven floors of the incomplete building around 4:15 p.m. after robbing a Big 5 Sporting Goods store in San Bruno, a little more than 10 miles away, said San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr.

He said the man had committed the robbery with a handgun and emerged with a second firearm — one of the store’s shotguns — as well as ammunition shells.

The horror ended when the man was killed on the roof of a construction elevator on the northwest corner of the unfinished structure. The building, which is slated to become a 120-bed hospital, occupies land that was originally the Jose Cornelio Bernal homesite in the mid-1800s.

UPDATE: 12 November, 3:30 pm: The shooter killed on the scene in the St. Luke’s incident has been identified as Javier Lopez Garcia, a 25-year-old San Jose resident. SFGate reports:

Investigators said that Lopez Garcia had made statements in both San Bruno and San Francisco indicating he climbed to his deadly perch next to the Mission District hospital Wednesday with a death wish.

“I’m ready to die. Today will be the day I die,” Lopez Garcia said at the scene, according to officials.

Lopez Garcia is believed to have robbed the Big 5 Sporting Goods Wednesday and made statements to the clerks at the store indicating he was suicidal, according to police.

About 20 minutes after leaving the Big 5 in San Bruno, Lopez Garcia arrived at the St. Luke’s construction site. SFPD Chief Greg Suhr adds that it’s unknown why Lopez Garcia headed to St. Luke’s. “That’s the million-dollar question,” Suhr told SFGate.

PHOTO: Police approach the body of the shooter (wearing white overalls) at the St. Luke’s hospital construction site, Nov. 11, 2015. Photo via @CBS12

Your Bernal Heights Crime Report for October 2015: The “SFPD Comes to BHNC” Edition


As you may recall, the most recent SFPD Community Meeting with Ingleside’s Capt. Joseph McFadden took place last week at the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center (BHNC). Your Bernalwood editor was in attendance, and it was an informative meeting — as you’ll soon see.

Capt. McFadden was the guest of honor at BHNC, but the real superstar was Neighbor Edie, who took these wonderfully detailed notes. There’s a lot of useful information here about crime and public safety in Bernal Heights, so read on, read thoroughly, and stay safe. Over to you, Edie…

Captain’s Report by Captain Joseph McFadden
October 20, 2015
at the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center

Notes taken by volunteer Edie, who is also responsible for any errors made below.

Personnel: The Captain introduced Chris Schaffer (formerly from Bayview Station). Chris is one of three swing-watch lieutenants. He’s a dynamo and worked 8 years in the Bayview, and was formerly undercover.

Recent incidents, Problems and Questions:

1. Car Break-ins, House Break-ins, and Package Theft: There seems to be a high amount of recidivism now, where thieves are arrested and held briefly, then get out and do it over again. The holidays are coming, too, with increases in car and house break-ins, and package stealing.

Package theft usually happens during the day. Ask delivery services not to leave packages if you’re not home – find a neighbor to receive them for you, or ask Central Pharmacy, or Daniel’s on Geneva. Also pay attention to anyone following Delivery trucks as they drop off packages. Thieves have been following the trucks, stealing the packages they deliver.

Car break-ins happen most often late at night, so don’t leave packages, garage door openers, or any personal items in your car, either. Thieves use shaved keys or do a quick smash and grab, so take everything out. Some people even leave their cars unlocked with notes saying there’s nothing inside, so their windows don’t get broken. Car break-ins primarily happen at night–drug addicts take stolen goods to 7th and Market, get a little cash for them, get a fix, and do it again. Make it more difficult to break in or steal by using a club, and a thief will choose another car instead of yours.

House burglaries usually happen after 9am. The thief comes to the door and rings the bell; if there’s no answer, they’ll kick the door in, or go around back to break in a door or window. So, if someone knocks, even if you don’t want to, answer so they know that you’re home and leave.

2. Ongoing problematic behavior by specific individuals: Bernal has a long-time resident with mental health issues who often threatens neighbors on the street. In ongoing situations, call for each incident: report the behavior, describe the person and the context, include days and times that incidents generally occur, plus any further details you have. Be specific. If you don’t get help when he threatens people, after 30-45 minutes, call the station front desk 404-4000 and ask for the Platoon Commander. You must also be prepared to stick around and talk to the police when they arrive. When you call in an incident, always ask for the CAD number so you can track response to your call.

3. Problem areas:
Around Alemany and Sickles: vandalism, graffiti, punctured tires.
Silver at Mission: Lots of kids getting out of school and hanging around. Kids get robbed, steal from each other. Neighbors are trying to track the incidents and get a handle on the situation so they and police can be more effective.

North Bernal: Neighbors say they are hearing gunshots more frequently now, mostly in the evenings, and recently there have been 2-3 incidents of people shooting guns off in the night, including at the Precita Park Cafe. Neighbors also say they’ve seen drug dealing in Precita Park, and a large and active homeless encampment at Cesar Chavez under 101.
Captain’s response: Shots fired: Bayview and Mission gangs have been committing robberies in Bernal and Glen Park. There are 2 freeways to get quickly in and out, so groups move easily from district to district. If you hear shots being fired, Shot Spotter may catch it, but you should call 911 anyway. Even if you can’t tell where they’re coming from, if many neighbors call, they can track the movement and figure out where they are. Besides, you don’t know but that someone might have gotten shot.

Precita Park Café window shooting is under investigation. Officers now think it’s not random, but might have something to do with an earlier altercation.

4. Deliberate reckless driving: At night, all over the city, groups get together in large open areas to do side shows – wheelies and other crazy driving. If you hear noise and can see the cars, get a license plate if possible.

5. Videos help to ID criminals and their cars. Please install video cameras, use them, and make copies of criminal activity to give the police. Police will distribute images of individuals and vehicles city-wide for officers to check daily. They may recognize then, and can keep an eye out for them as they patrol.

6. To email any city employee:

7. REMEMBER: when you describe someone, look for specific and distinct details (not a black hoodie, but the big eagle tattoo on his left arm) that would allow police to be sure they’ve got the right person.

8. Activity that happens really late at night often involves victims that are coming from gambling shacks. They’re watched as they leave with winnings or drugs, and someone takes it away from them.

Police academy: 5 new graduates are training at the station now, and a new class will graduate in November. There should be five new classes next years. Numbers at the station are holding steady at 100.

Halloween: Popular trick-or-treat corridors will have officers present to safeguard the kids.

Community leaders: The Captain introduced the community leaders present at the meeting. Sierra Desalvia, Community Boards; Ailed Paningbatan, BHNC Director of Community Engagement; Ayanna Weathersby, BHNC Community Engagement Coordinator; Joelle Kenealey, Co-Chair of the Community Police Advisory Board (CPAB) and President of the Outer Mission Merchants and Residents Assoc. (OMMRA); May Wong, President of the Excelsior District Improvement Assoc. (EDIA); Grace Breyley, Co-Captain of the Curtis-Newton NWG; Edward Whitmore, South Bernal NERT Coordinator; Bobby Cochran, Sergeant at Arms, Holly Court Resident Council; Jon Shepherd, SFSAFE.

Community Boards. Sierra Desalvia, Volunteer with the Community Boards Outreach Program.
601 Van Ness Ave. #2040. SF 94102 • 415 920-3820 • • M-Th 10am-5pm
Community Boards is the oldest conflict resolution center in the US. A non-profit, CB provides confidential, affordable voluntary conflict resolution between two or more neighbors, groups, or businesses, in English, Spanish, Mandarin, and Cantonese. The mediators are trained volunteers, representative of the communities they are working with.

If you’re unable to resolve a disagreement, call CB and tell them your side of the story. CB will contact the other parties, and if all concerned are willing and able to participate, will begin the mediation process. Resolutions can be oral or in writing, and must be made and agreed to by all parties involved.

CB does not handle disputes where one or more party is unwilling to negotiate, if there are credible threats of violence, or if parties are not able to speak for themselves.

Next meeting: Nov. 17th, 7-8:30 pm, Ingleside Police Station, 1 Sgt. John V Young Lane
San Francisco, CA 94112

PHOTO: Capt. Joseph McFadden at BHNC, Oct. 20, 2015 by Telstar Logistics

Tuesday: The SFPD Ingleside Community Meeting Comes to Bernal Heights


Each month, Capt. Joseph McFadden from SFPD’s Ingleside Station holds a community meeting to give precinct residents the chance to ask questions about crime and public safety in our neighborhood. The meetings are very useful, but they’re not always convenient, because they usually happen at Ingleside Station in Balboa Park.

This month, instead of going to see Capt. McFadden, Capt. McFadden will come see us. Tomorrow night, Tuesday, Oct. 20, the SFPD’s Ingleside Community Meeting will come to the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center on Cortland. If there’s a Bernal Heights crime issue that’s got you on edge, this is an excellent opportunity to talk about it with our local top cop.

Neighbor Sarah, Bernalwood’s ad hoc liaison to SFPD Ingleside, tells us:

Meet Captain McFadden at the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center on Tues., Oct. 20, at 7pm

The monthly Ingleside Police Station community meeting for October will be held at the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center, 515 Cortland Ave. This is a great opportunity to meet Captain McFadden in person, ask questions, and share any concerns you have about safety in the neighborhood. Captain McFadden has been taking the community meetings out into the neighborhoods in the district so that more people can attend.

Community Boards will also be presenting at the meeting. Founded in 1976, Community Boards is the oldest public conflict resolution/mediation center in the US. Community Boards volunteer mediators can help you navigate problems with neighbors, landlords, roommates, family, vendors, etc. More info is available here.

And here’s the official annoucement:

PHOTO: Capt. McFadden, by Telstar Logistics

Details Emerge as SFPD Officer Recovers from Injury Incident on Mirabel

It’s been a little more than a week since that unpleasant incident on Mirabel, where a manhunt unfolded after an SFPD officer was struck by the driver of a stolen BMW. The October 9 edition of the SFPD Ingleside Newsletter provided a rather comprehensive summary of what happened, told in classic crime-blotter style:

It started out innocent enough. The department has been dealing with a rash of car burglaries in the City. The Ingleside District has dealt with more than its share. Ingleside Officers Stark and Carew, along with many other Ingleside units, were sent to investigate a vehicle break in on Mirabel Avenue. The caller said there were four suspects inside a white BMW. The caller gave the BMW’s license plate number to dispatch, who informed the officers that the vehicle was wanted for a previous burglary and it had fled from Mission units who tried to stop it less than an hour before the current call. Ingleside Officers Hermosura and Ferronato were first to arrive on scene and, as they pulled up, three suspects exited the BMW and escaped down a nearby stairwell. However, the driver put the BMW in gear and took off at a high rate of speed. Officers Hermosura broadcast that he was in pursuit as he chased the fleeing subject through the narrow streets in the neighborhood. After three blocks, fearing for the safety of pedestrians and other motorists, Officer Hermosura cancelled his pursuit. The vehicle was last seen driving east on Montezuma Street.

A few seconds later all the responding police personnel were startled by the distressing sound of an officer screaming for help on the radio. Dispatch quickly put out a call of “officer down” on the unit block of Mirabel Streets. Every available Ingleside unit, along with several units from Bayview and Mission Station sped to the scene. They found Ingleside Officer Bryant lying on his back on the sidewalk screaming in pain. Officer Bryant told his colleagues that he thought he was going to die. An ambulance was dispatched while Sgt. Mitchell rendered first aid.

The driver of the BMW was lying face down on the sidewalk, in handcuffs, surrounded by Officers Montero and Roche. Roche and Montero were following Bryant as they arrived on Mirabel Avenue. Just then, the BMW, driven by the suspect, arrived and stopped in front of Bryant’s patrol car which was blocking the street. All the officers exited their patrol car and ordered the suspect out of the car. But instead of exiting the BMW, the suspect accelerated at the officers. All were able to avoid getting hit except for Bryant, who was hit by the BMW’s front bumper and pinned against a parked Volvo. Officer Montero quickly pulled Officer Bryant, who was in extreme pain, out to safety. The driver of the BMW was taken into custody and booked on a variety of charges. The other occupants of the BMW were quickly apprehended in the area by other officers. Officer Bryant was treated at San Francisco General Hospital for serious injuries to his legs and chest and is now recovering at home. Report number: 150870820

Yikes. Upon reading this, Bernalwood asked Capt. McFadden from Ingleside Station for an update on Officer Bryant’s condition. Capt. McFadden shared this encouraging news:

Officer Joshua Bryant was injured in the incident. He is a very large man and did not sustain any severe injuries. He had a sprained left wrist and left ankle along with serious road rash all over his arms and legs from being dragged by the suspect’s car. He is recovering from his injuries and should be back to work within a few weeks. Thanks for the community concern. It is greatly appreciated.

The driver of the car, Jaimes Ulises, 25, of Mountain View, is charged with attempted murder and aggravated assault on a peace officer in connection with the incident. Last week his bail was set at $2.5 million.

PHOTO: Stolen BMW involved in the Oct 5 incident on Mirabel, by @NBCbayarea

Late-Night Manhunt After Auto Burglary Suspect Injures SFPD Officer on Mirabel


Were you awakened by the sound of the helicopter circling low above Precitaville at around 12:30 am last night? That was a California Highway Patrol chopper that was brought in to assist the San Francisco Police in a coordinated search for auto break-in suspects who tried to run down an SFPD officer on Mirabel.

SF Chronicle reporter Kale Williams explains what happened:

A police officer was injured in San Francisco Sunday night when an auto burglary suspect tried to run him over, pinning him against his patrol car, authorities said.

Around midnight, officers responded to reports of the burglary on the 100 block of Mirabel Ave in the city’s Bernal Heights neighborhood, said Officer Carlos Manfredi, a police spokesman.

As the officer stepped out of his cruiser, the suspect, who was sitting in a stolen BMW, tried to run him over, Manfredi said, pinning him against his vehicle.

The suspect, whose name was not immediately released, then attempted to flee but was blocked by another patrol car, which he also hit, Manfredi said. He was arrested at the scene.

The injured officer may have suffered broken ribs and injuries to his legs. He was taken to San Francisco General Hospital, where he was in stable condition early Monday morning.

Yikes. Bernalwood sends sincere gratitude and get-well wishes to the injured SFPD officer.