Mayhem Strikes as Thief Crashes Stolen Car on Mullen




Grrrrr. Neighbor Peter did some excellent reporting on the scene yesterday after a stolen Honda Accord crashed into a several parked vehicles on Mullen:

A bit of news from Santana Rancho today. I didn’t witness it happen, but heard a loud crash at around 1pm (ish) and ran outside to check it out. Pictures below of what I found on Mullen at Franconia.

A Honda Accord slammed into a Saab then careened into and on top of a Mini Cooper. The 2 witnesses I spoke to said the driver fled the scene on foot north down the Franconia stairs towards Peralta, then headed east on Peralta.

The police were on the scene pretty quickly and seemed to get a somewhat decent description of the suspect from witnesses. They confirmed that the car was stolen. Also, the police were then pointed to a few belongings that the suspect may have dropped on the Franconia stairs while fleeing – a couple of flashlights and a pretty large folding knife.

All in all, pretty startling, since he must’ve been driving pretty fast to cause such an acciden. All are lucky that no bystanders were hurt. Unfortunately, the two cars that got hit were in pretty rough shape though.

PHOTOS: Neighbor Peter

Video Shows Drive-By Shooter Shattering Windows at Precita Park Cafe


It’s been a week since several windows at the much-loved Precita Park Cafe were shattered in a disturbing barrage of late-night gunfire.

Impressively, the damage was quickly repaired, so that virtually no trace of the incident remains. Less impressively, the SFPD says they have few leads in the investigation.

Here’s a development: Bernalwood has reviewed security camera footage that shows how the incident unfolded. It happened at 4:43 AM. The shooting was a drive-by, and the passenger fired the weapon.  It was over within seconds.

Pay close attention to the car that appears in the first few moments of the video. You can see several muzzle flashes, and broken glass falling to the ground:

Want to play high-tech sleuth? Use your own combination of algorithms to zoom and enhance the video. Can you identify what kind of car this is?


Supernatural Forces Suspected In Odd Case of Vanishing Fig Tree


Neighbor Beth is baffled by the sudden disappearance of a fig tree from her enclosed back yard on Gates Street:

We are trying to make sense of the mystery of the missing fig tree.

We planted this fig sapling a few years ago. After losing all of the leaves, it remained a bare stalk for for a year (or two?). When I finally decided I may as well get rid of it, I climbed the slope to find – lo, and behold – it had 2 grown leaves. Miraculous! Since then, it gained about 1 leaf per year and at last count had about 6.

Last week, while Margot Mouse and I were making DIY garden gnomes, we noticed that the fig tree was COMPLETELY GONE. Nothing left but the tag. The rocks around the base were neatly moved aside.

There are some potential witnesses who guard the yard but they won’t talk, not even under the influence of catnip. I thought maybe a kid had broken it and hid the evidence but there’s no trace, nowhere. Animals? We have no deer, goats, or cows. Raccoons starting a garden? Raptured? We remain mystified.

PHOTO: Neighbor Beth

Gunfire Smashes Windows at Precita Park Cafe



Ugh. Neighbor Daniel reports that three of the front windows at the Precita Park Cafe were smashed overnight. Police are on the scene this morning.

Some neighbors said they heard gunfire at approximately 4:30 am, and it would appear that this is how the windows were damaged. A bullet hole was still visible in at least one of the damaged windows.

Bernalwood will provide updates as more information becomes available.

UPDATE: Neighbor Alex shares additional photos from the scene. He suspects it was a drive-by that targeted the windows.


He also recovered a slug from the scene:


Mat shared a photo of a bullet still lodged in the wall:


PHOTOS: Neighbor Daniel, Neighbor Miles, Neighbor Alex, @MatDunlap.

Woman Critically Injured in Mission Street Hit-and-Run Saturday Night


A pedestrian was critically injured in a hit-and-run incident on Mission at Precita last Saturday night, and the SFPD is looking for leads to help catch the driver. The SF Appeal reports:

The collision was reported at 9:58 p.m. at Mission Street and Precita Avenue, where a 24-year-old woman was hit by a pickup truck, according to police.

The truck driver did not stop after the collision and continued north on Mission Street. The truck and driver had not been found as of this morning, police said.

The victim was taken to San Francisco General Hospital with head and torso injuries that are considered life-threatening, according to police.

Anyone with information about the case is encouraged to call the Police Department’s anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444 or to send a tip by text message to TIP411 with “SFPD” in the message.

New Details Emerge About Circumstances Surrounding 2014 Alex Nieto Shooting


The cover story of today’s San Francisco Examiner reveals new information about the circumstances surrounding the SFPD officer-involved shooting of Bernal neighbor Alex Nieto on Bernal Hill in March 2014.

The Examiner reports:

Supporters say Nieto was defenseless and never attempted to grab, or point at police, the stun gun holstered at his side. They also believe Nieto was brought to the ground by gunfire, and then shot until dead.

But previously unreported details included in a letter sent from the District Attorney’s Office to Chief Greg Suhr in February, when the DA decided not to press criminal charges against the four officers involved, contradict those claims. The case has since been referred to the FBI.

The San Francisco Police Department echoed the DA’s decision last week when it closed its investigation into Nieto’s death, determining that officers acted within department policy when they fatally shot him on March 21, 2014.

Nieto pulled the trigger on his stun gun three times within moments of police shooting at him, according to the DA.

Each trigger squeeze was recorded by the Taser’s memory. An analyst with Taser International reviewed the weapon’s clock and determined the trigger was first pulled at 7:18:45 p.m., again seven seconds later and then at 7:19:01 p.m., according to the DA.

“These times coincide with time the officers discharged their weapons, which can be heard on the audio recording of the 911 call beginning at 7:18:40 p.m.,” the letter read.

The article also reveals that Neighbor Alex had several disturbing mental-health incidents in the weeks preceding his death on Bernal Hill.

 IMAGE: Alex Nieto photo illustration by Telstar Logistics

Your July 2015 Crime Report: Home Burglaries and Auto Smash-and-Grab Thefts Are Way Up

The video above shows the infuriating spectacle of an organized auto smash-and-grab ring smashing-and-grabbing from a car parked on Bocana yesterday.

We’ll get to the details of that in just a moment… but first, the valiant Neighbor Sarah attended the monthly Ingleside SFPD community meeting last week, and she shares these notes on the latest Bernal Heights crime trends:

Notes from Ingleside Community Meeting
July 21, 2015

– Lt. Struckman has been sent to Property to work on high-profile issue of clearing backlog of rape kits.
Ingleside is now down to two lieutenants. at station; Lt. Burke was moved from investigations to patrol/nights.
– Ingleside expects new lieutenants and sergeants this fall
– Police redistricting happened, but it did not affect Ingleside

Rob Rueca – he is the permits officer at Ingleside station
Archie Wong – new neighborhood DA at station;, 415-551-9813

Burglaries of autos and homes WAY up across city
SFPD thinks this has to do with Prop 47, which passed last year
+40% in burglaries in Ingleside YTD
+19% in auto burglaries YTD

Captain attributed this to a mix of organized criminals who know exactly how to work around the laws – including Ghost Town gang from Oakland – and opportunistic crimes by individuals with drug problems.
For example, gang members send one person out to break all the car windows on a block. Second person comes 30 minutes later and grabs stuff from inside. That way, it’s separates crimes – one vandalism, one theft. Also keeps property stolen by one person under the $900 felony threshold.

Ghost Town has been hitting SF, San Bruno, Palo Alto, Oakland, Santa Clara. Also, some auto burglars break the window to trigger car alarm, knowing most people just turn it off… which then lets them get in very easily

Home burglaries – Occur mostly between 10am and 2pm
Nosy neighbors and dogs are best deterrents. SFPD encourages setting up neighborhood watch, and always report suspicious activity to 553-0123 (crime in progress: 911). Explain why the activity is suspicious and give good details if you can do so without endangering yourself (plate #, etc).

Ingleside recently stopped a ring of street robberies, which have also been up.

Grocery Outlet in Visitacion Valley had a takeover robbery – police IDed people from video, but victims could not ID them, so not arrested

Always file a report – it helps the police connect crimes.

Trying to get horses and motorcycle officers in McLaren Park – crime picks up later in the day there

SFPD recently did a traffic sting focused on not yielding to pedestrians at Mission/Oliver – 38 citations in 1.5 hours. Doing more traffic stings along Mission corridor, so be advised.


This year’s National Night Out will be held in Bernal Heights at the Bernal Rec Center and Bernal Library!
Next week – Tues, Aug 4, 5-8pm

Free BBQ, jumpy houses, rock climbing wall, games, arts & crafts, giveaways. safety resources, and more
Meet your neighbors, have fun, and find out ways to promote community safety
Exhibiting organizations include the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center, Bernal Library, NERT, ALERT, Rec & Park, SFSAFE, Department of Emergency Management, SFPD, SFFD, & more
Sponsors include SF POA, SFFD, Recology, Cordova Market, Boys & Girls Clubs, and more

Next SFPD Ingleside meeting – 8/18, 7pm, at St. Aidan’s Church, 101 Goldmine in Diamond Heights right near DH Safeway. Lots of parking available.

PRESENTATION BY Auxiliary Law Enforcement Response Team (ALERT)

Modeled on SF NERT, this group trains team to assist law enforcement in the event of disaster – directing traffic, answering phones, working with officers to check areas for looting, assist at reunification centers, etc.
Will respond based on need to any of 10 stations, so if 1989-style quake happened today, basically all volunteers would have been sent to Marina; ALERT is not neighborhood-focused like NERT. To participate:
Must do NERT certification first – 20 hours
ALERT training – additional 8 hours
Must complete background check before doing ALERT training
3 training classes in 2015
More information here

Okay, so now let’s get back to the sad car break-in video shown above.

As Neighbor Sarah mentioned, auto break-ins are way up all over San Francisco, and they appear to be increasingly organized. This video shows just what that looks like. Neighbor Scott tells Bernalwood:

When I went to my car this morning, July 27,  I noticed my neighbor’s car had been vandalized. Attached is a video of the perpetrator – from him casing the neighborhood, to selecting a car, to calling his accomplice, to looting my neighbor’s car.

My father-in-law’s car was broken into Saturday night so I’m hoping you can let everyone know – especially on Bocana Street – that we are the “street-de-jour” for the smash-and-grab crowd.

Also, I called SFPD, and since it wasn’t my car that was broken into, I can’t file a police report. I sent the video to the Ingleside police station anyway.

If we find out who’s car it was, I’d be happy to talk to the police with them. This happened to me two months ago – I feel their pain!