Neighbor Mat had his custom-built bike stolen at gunpoint on Leese St. earlier this week, and his friends and neighbors are spreading the word:
Our singlespeed cross friend, Mat, was robbed at gunpoint one block from my house last night in Bernal Heights on Leese near Park and Mission. The motherfuckers took his bike and his wallet. One asshole pinned him against the car pointing the gun in his face while another one grabbed the bike and his wallet while he was unloading. I happened on the scene minutes after while Mat was giving a report to the police. I had bikes myself to unload. Better be sure I’m not going to be playing by the same rules anymore.
If you see the Gaulzetti bike in the picture attached, please notify Mat and the police immediately.
I talked to two cops in our precinct this morning, and they had little encouraging news. They said that only three teams patrol a huge swath of the city in the Ingleside District–Excelsior, Outer Mission, Bernal, Glen Park. They told me that there are few convictions and barely any jail time, one or two days max, for felony robbery when property is involved. The only sentences are for bodily injury, even if the people are caught on tape. They see the same thieves cycling through the system “hundreds of times” and “the courts just put them right back out on the street.” They said, “policing is a partnership between the community and law enforcement, and San Francisco is not a police-friendly city . . . there’s only so much we can do. . . . . the advice we can give you is don’t be a victim.”
A biased view I’m sure, but I’m lobbying to my landlord and other tenants for cameras and automated flood lights and signage. I’ve contacted Bernal Neighborhood Center to see what community policing goes on.
Neighbor Sarah, your ever-vigilant crime correspondent, shares this recommendation:
One thing that anyone interested in community policing should do is to contact SAFE to set up a neighborhood watch group. You can fill out the form here.
It may not be what immediately comes to mind after an incident like this, but having more trained eyes on the street goes a long way.
PHOTO: Neighbor Mat’s stolen bike