ROXIE THEATRE - It’s all happening! Photo by Andrea Salles

Two men plead guilty to Mission District abduction

Two men pleaded guilty to charges in connection with a 2016 incident in which they abducted a woman walking home from Beauty Bar on Mission Street and attempted to extort her into selling her body for sex. The District Attorney announced the guilty pleas in a statement Wednesday.

Earl Prince, 32, of Oakland pleaded guilty to human trafficking and witness intimidation and was sentenced to 20 years in state prison. Anthony Taylor, 24, of San Francisco pleaded guilty to kidnapping and will be sentenced to eight years in prison.

The victim, who has not been identified, was approached by the two men in their vehicle as she was walking home on Mission Street. The men took the woman by force, put her in their car, and drove her off to a motel in Oakland. Two other women were in the car, and prevented the victim from leaving.

During the ride, Price demanded $1,500 in exchange for the woman’s freedom. If it was not paid, Prince said, she would have to work it off as a prostitute to earn her freedom. At the motel, the victim was able to notify a desk attendant that she had been kidnapped. The police arrived and found the victim in a motel room with Price and one of the women.

As of October, human-trafficking cases are up 243 percent in San Francisco, with 96 reported cases this year. –JM

Roxie Theater gets a gift

The Roxie Theater, the Mission’s foremost hub of obscure documentaries and indie films, received a $150,000 grant from The National Trust for Historic Preservation in partnership with American Express. The money will go toward building upgrades. It may need them as the theater opened in 1909.

Nihonmachi Little Friends, a childcare center in Japantown, and Doolan-Larson Building in the Haight-Ashbury, also received grants of $150,000. –JM

La Taqueria keeps its building

La Taqueria lovers, rejoice! On Tuesday, the owner of one of the most popular taquerias in the Mission was able to buy his building at 25th and Mission for $1.7 million — a building that owner Miguela Jara Sr. thought he owned since 1972 — during a courthouse auction. The Chronicle’s Jonathan Kauffman has more.

This is not the first of La Taqueria’s troubles this year. The famed restaurant paid out more than a half-million in fines and unpaid wages after employees filed complaints that the restaurant stiffed them out of overtime and sick pay, as well as other health care costs.  –JM

And finally, the Mission Local staff collected three awards this week.  If you like the coverage, think about supporting it.  A special Newsmatch grant doubles what you give right now.

In the meantime, thank you from all of us.

Mission Local staff and award winners from left to right: Julian Mark, Lydia Chavez, Abraham Rodriguez, Charlotte Silver, Laura Wenus (back), Mallory Newman, Joe Eskenazi (back), and Liliana Michelena. Photo by Andrea Valencia.


As part of the SF Urban Film Festival, local filmmaker and performance artist Vero Majano will present a work in progress on Los Siete, a reference to the seven young men caught up in a May 1, 1969 incident in which one plainclothes officer was shot and killed and another was wounded.

All were later acquitted, but the press coverage, arrests and trial became a catalyst for Latino activists to organize. Majano is a superb performer and while we haven’t seen this work, we look forward to it. Others performing at the event – The Stories We Will Tell: Interactive Media and Placemaking – or participating in a panel afterwards include: Niki Selken, Designer/Creative Development Lead at Gray Area, Luisa Caldas, Prof. of Architecture, Director of VR/AR Laboratory, UC Berkeley,  Keith Wilson, Artist/Filmmaker, Adam Osfield Snell, 360 Filmmaker, Heather Escandon, Real Refuge Co-Creator Yang Liu, and 3D Interactive Engineer/New Media Artist. This will happen Saturday at 7 p.m. at SOMArts. LC

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Julian grew up in the East Bay and moved to San Francisco in 2014. Before joining Mission Local, he wrote for the East Bay Express, the SF Bay Guardian, and the San Francisco Business Times.

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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