Earlier this year at our March meeting we welcomed new Northern Station Captain Paul Yep. If you were able to attend the meeting, you might remember that during the meeting ASNA members requested increased foot, bicycle, and patrol cars in and around the neighborhood in response to neighbor's perception of rising crime and wreckless driving around the neighborhood.
At the time, our new Captain committed to repurposing some of his plain clothed and uniformed officers to patrol the area and submitting a request for increased traffic enforcement along the Divisadero corridor with the SFPD traffic division.
Since our initial meeting in March more tourists are returning to our iconic park and there are more pedestrians in cross walks. At this point it is imperative to ensure that visitors are informed of the risk associated with leaving valuables in their vehicles and that we reduce the risk of pedestrians and cyclists being struck by wreckless drivers.
Over the last several months we've observed a visible increase in patrol cars, bicycle / motorcycle units, as well as foot patrols in and around Alamo Square.
But despite the increased visibility of various types of SFPD patrols, we're unfortunately also observing more and more broken glass from smashed car windows around Alamo Square.
When we met with newly elected D5 Supervisor Dean Preston at the Archbishop's Mansion back in early 2020, we heard from frustrated neighbors about the lack of action to address rampant car breakins. At the time Supervisor Preston reiterated that car breakins are a crime of opportunity and shared a pilot program aimed at educating tourists about the danger of leaving valuables in vehicles.
At the meeting suggestions were offered to the Supervisor and his staff that warning signs be lowered on posts to ensure visibility and community awareness. To date, the signs are still as they were back when we first met to discuss the issue.
ASNA took the step of launching a visitors page to help alert people to car breakins as well as provide people with suggestions of sights and businesses to visit. However, it is up to our public safety officials, elected leaders, and community stakeholders to find ways to address these criminal theft rings that target our park and other popular destinations around the city.