Your Bernal Heights Crime Report for May 2014: Violent Crime Down, Property Crimes Up, and Dates with Prostitutes May Not Go as Planned

Police Telephone

Neighbor Sarah, your invaluable volunteer Bernal Heights crime reporter, attended the SFPD Ingleside Community meeting in June, and she filed these summary notes on the latest Bernal Heights crime trends. Read on, read carefully, be smart, and stay safe:

Notes from Ingleside community meeting.
June 17, 2014

Capt. Falvey presided. There was some sort of malfunction in getting the Compstat profile, so he didn’t have a handout with May’s stats.

Violent crimes are down quite a bit YTD. City-wide, homicides are at 13, which is a contrast to the early- to mid-2000s when the average was 90-100 a year.

Shootings in the district are down 40% YTD. Probably many factors contributing to it, including jobs program run out of Mayor’s Office for Violence Prevention, gun buyback, community groups, garden project/employment for youth, 1099 Sunnydale (offering city services), and video cameras in the Sunnydale.

Robberies are down 27 or 28% YTD. Fewer cell-phone robberies.

One type of robbery is trending up – people on prostitution websites arrange ‘dates,’ then rob the would-be client (who is carrying cash and is arriving alone, and who is also embarrassed to report crime or follow through on IDing suspects). Made some good arrests in a case where a 21-year-old single guy was robbed and wasn’t afraid to come forward – police made a fake appointment, then, after brief chase, arrested a group of five people. But another one of these happened last week, so there is more than one crew of people doing this.

Aggravated assault still high, driven by felony domestic violence.

Property crimes up since 2011, when ‘realignment’ occurred and property criminals were released from prisons.
– Auto thefts up 45% vs average before then.
– Burglaries improving now (26 in May vs average of 42 over last 2 years), but spike in first part of June (on pace for 35).
– 65% of stolen cars in May were pre-2001 Hondas and Acuras. Auto theft arrests up 30%. – 1/3 of cars recovered in district were stolen in outside district or cities.

Citations still up YTD (+31%) – SFPD focus on pedestrian safety
– A little lower in May than in first four months
– If you have intersections that you’d like traffic enforcement operations at, email At the request of a Bernal neighbor, I submitted the intersection at Bernal Heights Blvd/Bradford/Esmeralda.
– 94% of tickets in recent months have gone to motorists; 4% to pedestrians; 2% to bicyclists.

Current scam where people call you saying you owe the IRS money and they’ll appear at your house in 45 minutes unless you go wire money. The IRS does not do this. Spread the word.

Also seeing fake PG&E inspectors who are asking to check something in back yard. When you’re out in the back with that person, an accomplice comes in and robs your house. As for PG&E ID, call PG&E, and/or call police and have them sort it out if one of these people knocks on your door.

One thing that is NOT a scam is the SF Police Officers Association calling to sell tickets to an upcoming rodeo at Cow Palace. Chief has received many questions/complaints about this.

30-40% of burglaries are still through open windows or unlocked doors. Do NOT leave windows open, even on 2nd or 3rd floors – burglars will climb up and get in. Lock side doors and make sure locks are in good order before you leave for vacation.

Recent burglary in Miraloma Park was thwarted by alert neighbor who noticed a guy standing as lookout in a driveway. Police came and arrested him. Other guy jumped out of second-story window and was caught a few blocks later because he’d hurt his feet in the jump. Turned out he was wanted for attempted murder in Oakland.

National Night Out – Tues., August 5, 5-8pm at Police Academy (350 Amber Dr., next to Diamond Heights Shopping Center). Specialty units, police demos, NERT, ALERT, Walk SF, Bike Coalition, SFSAFE will all be on hand. Very fun event for kids and a great way to tour police academy. Free BBQ dinner and lots of giveaways. Also very convenient to Silver Tree Day Camp – come by on your way home and have a free meal!

Sunday Streets in the Excelsior – Sunday, Sept. 28

Fiesta on the HillBernal Heights – Sunday, October 19

Other events
Contact the MTA to apply for a permit for block 
St. Mary’s Park/Rec Center – July 12 – community playdate and picnic
McLaren concert seriesfree concerts

St. Mary’s Park area – pattern of robberies by group of 4-5 kids/teens (12-15 years old). Any update? Arrests were made after winter series of robberies. Not sure if current robberies are same group (ie, now out of detention) or different group. Police increasing patrols. St. Mary’s Rec Center manager was at the meeting and said they have more staff in the summer for the day camps and are stationing people around park to keep an eye out.

NO MEETING IN JULY – the captain will be away. Next meeting will be in August.

There you have it. Please give Neighbor Sarah a sexy Steve McQueen wink for all the hard we she does coordinating with the SFPD and typing up these notes. Thank you, Sarah!

PHOTO: Telstar Logistics

9 thoughts on “Your Bernal Heights Crime Report for May 2014: Violent Crime Down, Property Crimes Up, and Dates with Prostitutes May Not Go as Planned

  1. hi there — seems as though someone vandalized a vacant house undergoing remodeling with spraypaint saying “Occupy Bernal” — 600 block

  2. Apparently got the report to late to include the rash of car break-ins this Saturday night – at least 3 on top of Bernal Hill, about five or six on Miguel between Chenery and Mission, and several around Holly Park. It appears someone/s went on a real spree. Remember, folks – leave nothing inside your cars! Even something of low value may still cost you window replacements!

  3. yes @SER even if it seems silly to you it’s necessary for the neighborhood to know about and we won’t if it doesn’t get into the stats for the police report.

  4. Pertaining to the intersection at Bradford/Esmeralda, is the request for more enforcement for pedestrians crossing through a blind curve? That’s going to get people’s legs smashed if they keep doing it, and it’s not about bad driving, it’s just a blind curve where the traffic coming up from Alabama has right of way, no stop sign, and in fact should clear the area quickly so they don’t get rear ended by other vehicles coming up around the blind curve.

    There’s nothing traffic engineering can do about it particularly other than what they have done, and that is, placed a crosswalk all the way over at “Vista Pointe Garden” south of Bernal Heights Blvd. People are too impatient to cross there and put themselves directly in harm’s way. They can’t put speed bumps there it’s a bus route and the bump on the hill and blind curve would be an awful idea. It was an intersection designed for horse and buggy.

    I’ve driven that intersection at least twice a day for fifteen years and walked it plenty too and the overwhelming concern there is impatient pedestrians, many with dogs they just ran in the park. Yes we’re all supposed to be virulently anti-car in a righteously leftist enclave but writing a passel of tickets for drivers rolling through stop signs or whatever was requested isn’t going to do anything safety wise. I might suggest a pedestrian barrier on the north corner of Bernal/Bradford that warns people to cross on the south corner instead even though they and pooch are panting in the howling wind.

  5. About half an hour ago, saw a car parked at the lower lot for Bernal Heights Park that had its rear window smashed, shattered glass behind it indicating it had just happened. That car was not there 15 minutes earlier when I walked by in the other direction. So these break-ins are happening in broad daylight, and in areas with a lot of pedestrian and automobile traffic. Never leave anything in your parked car!

  6. For the record, the police calling to sell you tickets to stuff is a scam, it is just of a different (and legal) type from the kind where a fake PG&E guy comes to your house.

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