Twenty frustrated residents and District 9 candidate Eric Storey filled My Corner Cafe on 26th Street and South Van Ness on Thursday to hear Captain Stephen Tacchini and two beat officers answer questions regarding crime, issues with day laborers, and homelessness.

“I know everyone is concerned,” Tacchini said. “We’ve had two homicides this week and we had a double shooting at 18th and Bryant tonight.”

He asked neighbors to demand that elected officials add to the Mission District’s 105 police officers.

Unable to offer any immediate solution to the homicides, residents at the monthly Inner Mission Community Association meeting focused on homelessness and day laborers who congregate on Cesar Chavez and other streets.

Tacchini explained he has been talking to representatives from La Raza Centro Legal’s day labor center on Cesar Chavez and Mission streets, to see if the adjacent vacant parking lot can be used for day laborers. So far, the talks haven’t yielded any results.

In terms of discouraging vagrants, Tacchini told the group to keep their streets free of graffiti and litter and to pour bleach in front of their house because the smell keeps people away.

“That’s so fourth world,” resident Rich Osweiler said.

Tacchini said he is trying to get homelessness under control with more outreach officers.

Following Tacchini, Storey had a chance to tell residents that he supports the gang injunction, a collaboration between city and federal officials to pursue civil injunctions against gangs, and the creation of a new day laborer center. He didn’t specify a location for that new center.

Storey also said he supports the sanctuary law that forbids police and officials from asking residents about their immigration status and reporting that information to federal authorities.

“The Mission District is so complex,” Storey said. Residents in Bernal Heights are concerned with issues different from the ones residents have in the Mission.

The Misson should have a supervisor of its own, one resident said.

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Founder/Executive Editor. I’ve been a Mission resident since 1998 and a professor emeritus at Berkeley’s J-school since 2019 when I retired. I got my start in newspapers at the Albuquerque Tribune in the city where I was born and raised. Like many local news outlets, The Tribune no longer exists. I left daily newspapers after working at The New York Times for the business, foreign and city desks. Lucky for all of us, it is still there.

As an old friend once pointed out, local has long been in my bones. My Master’s Project at Columbia, later published in New York Magazine, was on New York City’s experiment in community boards.

Right now I'm trying to figure out how you make that long-held interest in local news sustainable. The answer continues to elude me.

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