Cash Drawers Stolen During Early Morning Break-In at Healthy Spirits

Security camera footage shows the intruder entering Healthy Spirits at 5:30 am.

It’s tough to be a merchant in San Francisco — as Heathy Spirits discovered yet again today.

In the early morning hours today, thieves broke in to the Healty Spirits store at 249 Cortland to steal the cash register.

This is the second time this has happened to Healthy Spirits; a similar incident took place in July 2016.

Rami from Healthy Spirits tells Bernalwood:

This morning approximately at 5:30 I received a call from police notifying me of a break in at my business located at 249 Cortland Ave.

The video footage shows that one of the thieves opened the front door using a crowbar and the second thief enters and proceeds to yank the cash register and runs away with two cash drawers. The cash drawers had a small amount of money but the robbery leaves me with a broken front door and a very expensive POS system to replace.
This same scenario almost exactly happened back in July 2016 where the thieves were only interested in the cash register as well.

It is days like today that I choose to count my blessings and I spend my time thinking about how lucky I am to be a part of this wonderful Bernal family. I shall restore whatever was damaged as soon as possible and I can’t wait to be back serving our clients and our Bernalese family at large.

Here are additional security-camera photos of the intruder inside Healthy Spirits this morning:


Anyone with further information about this incident is encouraged to contact SFPD Ingleside Station at (415) 404-4000.

At Community Safety Meeting, City Officials Promise Action After Banks Street Gunfire

There was a community meeting last Wednesday to discuss the circumstances surrounding the disturbing gunfire that erupted during a mid-October party at 212 Banks Street.

Neighbor Rebecca lives near the Banks Street house where the gunfire occurred, and she attended the meeting on Wednesday. Here’s her summary of the discussion:

The community meeting at BHNC went really well. Lots of neighbors (at least 60) showed up, which demonstrated community engagement, and the leaders who were present.

Supervisor Hillary Ronen, Captain Jack Hart, and Kevin Guy from the City’s short-term rentals office all remarked on the involvement of neighbors.

When someone asked about forming a formal Neighborhood Watch, Captain Jack Hart basically said, “no need for that – you guys ARE that!” Airbnb has offered to pay for any damage from the party’s fallout; repairing windows and cars with bullet holes.

SFPD has stepped up patrols and is taking this incredibly seriously. Captain Hart outlined lots of ways that they are ensuring that this “NEVER happens again.” That means foot patrols, closer contact with short-term lease oversight, gang task force outreach, etc. He reiterated how unusual and shocking this incident was, even to him.

The meeting was very focused on the Banks Street incident and how they’re working to avert any future such problems. One woman did ask about other issues: She acknowledged that we were here to discuss the Banks Street event, but she also wanted to know how SFPD is addressing the issues more regular, recurring problems. Specifically: package theft and car break-ins.

Captain Hart said they’re working on all of these things, and that his biggest request is that people report ANY and ALL crimes we see. He said that he pulled over a stolen car full of stolen goods with identifying info, and none of those theft victims had reported it and he was so frustrated. Always report car break-ins, report package thefts, and if you see anything in progress call 911 and let THEM triage it — don’t just write it off that police are doing “more important” things elsewhere.

Captain Hart is committed to Bernal almost to the point of absurdity; during the meeting he was rattling off street names and his family’s personal history, and he threatened to get a tattoo that said “212 Banks.”

Suffice to say, I think we’re in good hands.

Neighbors and Merchants Harassed by Aggressive Man in Precita Park

Neighbors say this man harasses and threatens people around the west end of Precita Park. (Photo from Precita Valley Neighbors)

Precita Park merchants and nearby residents have been  harassed by a man who has repeatedly threatened them, but thus far, local officials have been unable to address their concerns.

For several weeks, Precita Valley Neighbors (PVN), the community group that represents the Precita Park area, has been documenting the man’s behavior, which includes making threats, lewd behavior, and defecation on the floors of local shops.

According to  PVN, the man, who appears to be in his late 40s, first arrived in Precita Park a few months ago. He sometimes threatens the woman who closes the Precita Clean Laundromat on Folsom near Bessie, and he has stalked her outside her apartment in The Mission.

Local merchants, including Charlie’s Cafe, have given the man free food and beverages, but his aggressive behavior has not subsided. Female employees at the cafe have been harassed.

PVN has called San Francisco’s Homeless Outreach Team for support several times, but PVN says the man refuses counseling, treatment, and services. Ingleside SFPD has also been notified, but after officers have spoken with the man, PVN reports that he typically moves to the bus stop across the street for a while, then returns.

Twice in the last week, PVN has requested police intervention to protect merchants from the man’s lewd behavior, public defecation, and physical harassment.

PVN’s most recent request, sent over the weekend, reads as follows (with names redacted to protect the victims):

Please please have a police car on hand at 10:00pm when [Victim 1] the laundromat worker, closes the Precita Laundromat at 3214 Folsom Street, cross street Precita/Bessie.

The homeless individual resting on the sidewalk across the street as seen on this attached picture nightly enters the Laundromat at closing time, defecates and urinates on the floor, physically threatens, verbally abuses, and has been witnessed by [Victim 2] of Charlie’s Cafe to masturbate in front of [Victim 1] when she is opening or closing the laundromat.

[Victim 1] is too afraid to call the police. Her job is to close the Laundromat and then she walks home one block away — often alone. The individual often threatens her as she walks home and follow her there.

The individual is drinking more and acting more aggressively toward her and the Charlie’s Cafe employees. The individual has refused help from the Outreach Van for the past two months of frequent visits.

Precita Vally Neighbors is helping [Victim 1] fill out the Civil Temporary Restraining Order forms. [Victim 2] , of Charlie’s Cafe, is also filling out the same forms, and is assisting his employees to file as well. The forms will be filed early next week, and understand it takes a few days for processing.

We are working with [Victim 1] to call 911 tonight when she sees this individual near her within 150 feet, since he is a known public threat. For the next few days, we will ask for a nightly passing call request at 10:00pm until the orders are executed. We believe this individual demonstrates increasingly aggressive behavior and we want to prevent physical violence.

Police Say Gunfire at Banks Street Party Was Gang-Related

Bullet hole left in a car parked on Banks Street. Photo courtesy of Neighbor D.

In the aftermath of the gunfire that erupted during a party on the 200 block of Banks Street last Saturday/Sunday night, Capt. Joseph McFadden from SFPD’s Ingleside Station says the incident was gang-related and that witnesses at the scene have declined to cooperate with the investigation.

Neighbor Sarah, Bernal’s volunteer liaison to the SFPD, shared these notes from her conversation with Capt. McFadden about the Banks St. incident:

The police believe a group of people affiliated with a gang rented a short-term rental (McFadden wasn’t sure which brand – VRBO, Airbnb, etc) for a party on Saturday night.

They advertised the party via flyers. Rival gang members noticed the flyers and showed up at the party. Police believe multiple people had guns, and a shootout ensued.

One person was shot in the butt. Amazingly, no one else was hurt, but houses and cars were hit with many bullets. Witnesses are not cooperating.

Separately, Capt. McFadden is rotating to a new Investigations unit, and the new captain of Ingleside will be Jack Hart, who starts on Saturday. He has been in contact with Supervisor Ronen, who is working with other government departments (including the one overseeing short-term rentals) to help with the investigation.

Anyone who has information about this incident is encouraged to contact SFPD via the department’s anonymous tip line at 415-575-4444, or text TIP411 with “SFPD” at the start of the message.

Gunfire Erupts During Saturday Night Party on Banks Street

Several Bernal neighbors heard the crackle of gunfire as a party was taking place on the 200 block of Banks Street, near the intersection with Cortland, during the early hours of Saturday/Sunday morning.

Neighbor Rebecca tells Bernalwood:

Sometime around 1:40am there were dozens of gunshots on what appeared to be the street next to us – Banks. We were all awakened and carefully looked out the window and saw maybe a dozen people running across roofs on Banks street houses, accompanied by lots of shouting.

We called 911 and reported it, and I just called the non-emergency number about an hour later and police did confirm that it was gunfire and that they are searching our neighborhood for anyone involved.

I can see police with flashlights on that street and officers that were looking in a backyard of a Banks street house (between Eugenia/Cortland).

Neighbor AnnMarie adds:

Multiple gunshots fired in the vicinity of Banks and Cortland on Saturday night/Sunday morning around 2 am. I live on the block and was awoken by the shots, and saw many people running down the block trying to get out of the area. To the best of my knowledge one person was injured, not life threatening.

Many, many cars were damaged by bullets (including mine). The police were there shortly after the gunshots, the case number is 170842003 at the Ingleside police station.

Neighbor AnnMarie shared this photo of the bullet hole in her car:

The gunshots can clearly be heard in this security camera footage shared by another Bernal neighbor:

Much of the area was taped off on Sunday morning, with police gathering evidence from shell casings found on the scene and bullet holes in homes and cars.

UPDATE, 17 October: Capt. McFadden from SFPD’s Ingleside Station tells Bernalwood the gunfire was likely gang-related. Read the complete story.

PHOTO: Top, gunshot through a home window. Photo courtesy of Neighbor D.

SFPD Begins Foot Patrols in Bernal Heights

SFPDbadgebar

Officers from the San Francisco Police Department have started foot patrols in Bernal Heights, says Capt. Joseph McFadden from SFPD’s Ingleside Station.

Via Neighbor Sarah, Bernal’s valiant volunteer crime correspondent, Bernalwood has learned that two officers have been permanently assigned to the new foot patrols, which began last weekend.

The Bernal foot patrols will be conducted by Officer Al Chan and Officer Kevin Endo, and Capt. McFadden encourages Bernal neighbors to get to know the officers. “Please stop them and say hello,” he says.

McFadden says new foot patrols will mainly focus on Cortland Avenue, but the officers can walk around the area if there are problems elsewhere.  Recently, neighbors have reported seeing SFPD foot patrols on Bernal Hill as well.

Capt. McFadden says he plans to add more foot patrol officers in Bernal Heights as more personnel are assigned to Ingelside Station.

PHOTO: Sara Bassett

BREAKING: Heavily Armed Police Raid Home on Anderson Street

Neighbor K. shared this photo captured at the scene as a police team raided a house on the 700 block of Anderson Street in Bernal Heights earlier today.

Neighbor K says the raid included “multiple armored vehicles, dogs, at least 15 officers in full gear.”

Neighbors at the scene said the raid was conducted by the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), but this has not been confirmed.

UPDATE: According to ABC-7, the Anderson Street was likely part of an ATF operation that resulted in numerous arrests as part of an investigation focused on guns, stolen cars, drugs, and fences for stolen property.