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Two men threatened to sexually assault a woman inside her home on the 700 block of Shotwell Street early Tuesday morning, according to the San Francisco Police Department.

Around 1:15 a.m. two white males, ages 25 to 30, broke into the house through a window, according to department spokesperson Sgt. Wilfred Williams.

Shortly afterward, the 22-year-old resident returned home and walked into the break-in. One of the suspects put his hand over the victim’s mouth and told her they were going to sexually assault her.

She screamed for help and the two suspects fled, Williams said. The victim, whose identity is being withheld, was not physically injured. Police are currently investigating the incident.

This was the third reported “hot prowl” incident, in which a resident was at home during a burglary, in two days, according to police. The other incidents took place in the Castro and Tenderloin Districts.

Police patrolling the block said there are issues with homeless and drunk people who hang out on the corner of Shotwell and 21st Streets at the Jose Coronado Playground.

Neighbors on the same block said they did not hear a scream, but some of them said they are scared to go out at night because of vagrants and homeless people.

Alex, 22, who declined to give her last name, said that she has lived on the block for three months and feels relatively safe. However she has asked her landlord to install a chain-door lock, which he has not done yet, she said.

Blanca Castillo, whose daughter goes to nearby Cesar Chavez Elementary School, said she does not feel safe because it is a “bad neighborhood.” Castillo, who lives several blocks north on Mission Street, added that she can’t avoid the block because her daughter was assigned to Cesar Chavez.

Juan Hernandez, who has been living in the block for four years, said he is scared of going out with his two girls and wife.

“There are a lot of people that smoke (drugs) and drink in that corner (of 21st and Shotwell),” Hernandez said. He added that he has seen fights and men threatening to stab each other.

Roberto, who declined to give his last name, said he is from South San Francisco, but has frequented the corner for ten years. He suspects the people who broke into the house are drug addicts not alcoholics.

“The people who do drugs are the ones who steal, the alcoholics are the ones that beg for money,” he said.

Roberto and others near the playground said the last time they’ve seen any problems was two weeks ago, when two people were fighting and someone was stabbed.

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Rigoberto Hernandez

Rigoberto Hernandez is a journalism student at San Francisco State University. He has interned at The Oregonian and The Orange County Register, but prefers to report on the Mission District. In his spare time he can be found riding his bike around the city, going to Giants games and admiring the Stable building.

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2 Comments

  1. I’ve lived on the block for 21 years, and it’s a really safe wonderful block. But the park has been a problem on and off for years. It’s “on” again since they started passing out free food on Fridays. And utter disaster.

    This sounds like a normal break in done by fools, who just didn’t figure on being discovered so they made threats then ran. If they’d been serious, they would have just done it and not have run.

    I think it’s a safe neighborhood if you are white and affluent and have a garage and can park your car off the street. It’s not as safe for working class families who struggle with their kids and gangs. I find most latins don’t feel so safe, whereas most whites are hipster-types and love the funk. My two cents.

  2. I’d like to add that this block is one of the prettiest and quietest in the whole Mission. A real jewel. Most of us know one another, a large majority of us are homeowners, and it is a delightfully diverse. All of us parents send our kids to public schools and feel a sense of community. I’m sorry this happened to a neighbor.

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