San Francisco

BREAKING: Eye Witness Account of Police Shooting Homeless Man in SF Mission

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This article has, and will be updated as fresh information comes in.  

San Francisco (CA) – A disturbing eye witness account of police officers shooting a homeless man between 18th and 19th streets on Shotwell this morning in the Mission District. The man who was known to local residents and was shot with both a ‘rifle’ and ‘pistol’ several times by police officers while at least one local resident watched.  Police are claiming that the man was armed with a knife, was shot by a non-lethal bean bag rifle before being shot several times with an actual firearm, and the man was taken to SFGH in ‘very critical condition’.

Here is the eyewitness account of a resident who watched the whole thing from his window.

homeless man shot in sf_edited-2homeless shooting_edited-1

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SFPD has confirmed their involvement, closed the street and have spoken with reporters:

It’s not clear if the police’s account of the incident contradicts the eyewitness.  The Police claim the man was armed with a knife, and that they shot first with non-lethal bean bags.  They also claim that the man did not die on site and is currently in critical condition.


Two more witnesses of the shooting claim the victim did not speak English, was nonviolent and was not carrying or waiving a knife at the time of the incident.  They say he had a knife hanging from his belt at the time of the shooting.

Update 6:15pm

Man shot by police has officially died of his wounds at SF General Hospital, Police announce investigation of officer involved

Update: April 8th

surveillance video of police arriving on scene and opening fire.  Their target is not in frame. Video shows that it takes officers 12 second from when they exit their vehicles to when they open fire on the suspect.


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Alex Mak - Managing Editor

Alex Mak - Managing Editor

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  1. Sabbie
    April 7, 2016 at 12:08 pm

    Maybe something in between a bullet and a freaking bean bag would be useful.

    • Colby Boles
      April 7, 2016 at 12:20 pm

      Hmmm. Like a Taser perhaps?

      • marcomack
        April 7, 2016 at 1:23 pm

        Thanks to the police commission, Tasers are not allowed to be used by SFPD.

      • Colby Boles
        April 7, 2016 at 1:51 pm

        My point exactly. Banning (mostly) non-lethal methods leaves you with lethal methods.

    • sanfranchristo
      April 7, 2016 at 12:31 pm

      Or at least stop at one bullet (if the account its correct as stated). If there is some justification for shooting someone once, assuming that they aren’t pointing a gun at you, I don’t understand follow-up shots. I fail to see how anyone with a knife is ever a theoretical imminent threat after being shot from distance. It seems like once a shot is fired, everyone keeps shooting until the person is on the ground and still–which shouldn’t necessarily be the objective.

  2. Someone
    April 7, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    I heard it happen, outside about 40 feet from where is was sitting, there were 4-6 shots fired, 3 police officers involved, I did see a large kitchen knife, but fuck man. One of the dudes I know saw it kinda happen. We think it was a guy that always kicked a soccer ball around. He was harmless from what I could tell. It happened next to the PG&E building on 19th and Shotwell, across the street from the fire station/training facility. There is a large homeless encampment there, and he lived there for the last year or so. The cops said they told him to leave a few days ago, and then he came back, very aggravated, and I guess with a kitchen knife. I bet 3 cops could have taken him down without killing him. But he doesn’t pay taxes, so fuck him right?

  3. P. Stone
    April 7, 2016 at 2:07 pm

    Murder is the new normal

  4. disqus_4DwHUxwP98
    April 7, 2016 at 6:43 pm

    The witnesses said they had seen him caring a knife before today. This man was an unknown PERHAPS dangerous and one can not assume that he will be compliant or even sane. I’m not saying he can’t protect himself. Officers should not be expected to go into a situation where their lives are at risk without the ability to have an upper hand. Law needs to prevail 100% of the time. Police are not a group of thugs driving around looking to break the law. They are paid by tax payers who need to be protected and have laws enforced. We never focus on how much crime and dangerous people are stopped every year. I have heard of many assaults in the City with people I know. There are people out there willing and able to break laws and be very violent with no regard to others health. It’s not a perfect system for sure. But law officers need to be seen as necessary force for good and not villainized for a myopic reaction of a tragic case. Perhaps the officers involved will be traumatized and have issues to deal with because they have to uphold the law. I highly doubt they are high fiving back at the station.