By HÉLÈNE GOUPIL
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.