Noe Valley Voice November 2001

Police Beat

The following crime summaries were culled from incident reports filed at Mission Police Station from Sept. 11 to Sept. 29, 2001.

Shoplifting Theft: 3:30 p.m. on Sept. 11; 4000 block of 24th Street

A salesperson at an eyeglass store on 24th Street reported that a male suspect, aged 18 to 19 and wearing black baggy jeans and red Nike shoes, entered the store on the afternoon of Tuesday, Sept. 11, while another male suspect of the same age with wavy hair waited outside as a lookout. The salesperson offered assistance to the suspect, but he ignored her and walked to a display shelf of eyeglasses. He selected three pairs of Giorgio Armani eyeglasses, valued at $600, placed them in his pants pocket, and left the store without paying.

Both suspects fled eastbound on 24th Street. Police searched the area, but did not find them.

Theft from a Locked Vehicle: 5:40 a.m. on Sept. 23; 200 block of Chattanooga Street

The resident of a home on the 200 block of Chattanooga Street was awakened in the early morning of Sunday, Sept. 23, by the sound of his automatic garage door opening. He walked to the garage, spotted two men standing inside, and yelled at them. The men then ran out of the garage and jumped into a gray car a short distance away. They drove south on Chattanooga past the resident's home. The resident then realized that his Honda Civic, which was parked outside, had been broken into and that the suspects had stolen several items, including 48 CDs, a car stereo, a cellular phone, and the garage door opener.

Unfortunately, it was too dark outside for the resident to get a good look at the suspects, so he was unable to provide a detailed description of the men. Police advised the resident to take his car to a police fingerprinting operation to determine if the suspects had left any prints. The case has been assigned to SFPD's Auto Burglary Division.

Robbery with Force: 11:30 p.m. on Sept. 20 and 11:21 p.m. on Sept. 24; corner of 26th and Sanchez streets

A 57-year-old man was walking near 26th and Sanchez in the late evening of Thursday, Sept. 20, when two male suspects, aged 25 to 35, approached him, told him not to speak, and searched his pants pockets. The suspects demanded that the man hand over his wallet, which included $63 in cash along with credit cards and personal identification. The suspects then fled on foot. The man was not injured and reported seeing no weapons on the suspects. The case has been assigned to SFPD's Robbery Division.

Four days later, on Monday, Sept. 24, at around the same time in the evening, a 53-year-old woman was walking home along Sanchez Street when she noticed two men, both in their early- to mid-20s and wearing dark clothing, in a laundromat on the 1200 block of Sanchez. Another man was sitting in a white, older-model American car with the engine running.

The first two men got inside the car, drove south on Sanchez, then got out of the car and ran up behind her near the corner of 26th Street, yelling that they wanted her money. Fearing for her safety, the woman pulled $200 from her wallet and tried to hand the money to one of the suspects, but the other suspect took hold of her right arm to grab at her purse, and she dropped the money on the ground. The suspects picked up the money and demanded her purse, but the woman told them she had no more money, even opening up her wallet to prove she was telling the truth. The two suspects then ran along 26th Street heading toward Noe, and the white car picked them up and continued down 26th Street. Police searched the area, but were unable to locate the suspects. The case also has been assigned to SFPD's Robbery Division.

Suspicious Occurrence: 4:20 p.m. on Sept. 26; 24th and Diamond streets

According to a nearby merchant, over the past several weeks, teenagers waiting at the bus stop on the corner of 24th and Diamond streets have been setting off cherry bombs in the trash cans adjacent to the bus stop and also across the street in front of a laundromat.

In the late afternoon of Wednesday, Sept. 26, the merchant once again heard an explosion and ran out of her office, spotting three teenagers running away and laughing. A driver and pedestrian also witnessed the incident. A police officer confronted the teens, but they said they did not know who set off the cherry bomb and that they were just waiting for the bus.

Burglary: Early morning hours of Sept. 27; 4000 block of 24th Street

The manager of an electronics store on the 4000 block of 24th Street reported that an unidentified suspect kicked in the glass front window of the store in the early morning hours of Thursday, Sept. 27. The culprit then apparently entered the store and stole an RCA-brand VCR and CD player. The case has been forwarded to SFPD's Burglary Division.

Suspicious Occurrence: 5:47 p.m. on Sept. 29; 3900 block of 24th Street

A 36-year-old man of Palestinian heritage told police that he was in line behind five other people at a 24th Street coffeehouse on Saturday, Sept. 29, to order a cup of coffee and that when it was his turn, the employee behind the counter walked away. He asked the employee several times to take his order, which the employee did not do. He then asked the coffeehouse employee to call the police. The customer told police he thought he was being discriminated against because he was Palestinian.

The employee who had left the counter told police that he had done so because his previous customer had ordered a "specialty" coffee drink which he was obliged to prepare. The employee said it is store policy that the employee behind the register prepare any specialty coffee drinks. (Other employees make other coffee drinks.) The employee said he told the customer that he would be with him soon, but the customer took his money from his wallet, placed it on the counter, and demanded immediate assistance.

The coffeehouse manager told police that the customer was being verbally abusive to her employees, so she asked him to leave, but he refused. The customer then asked the manager if the store had a video camera. The manager, feeling the customer might become violent if he learned there was not a camera, lied and told him a camera was on the premises.

Police talked to the coffeehouse employee about the customer's feelings, and he responded that he would never discriminate against a customer. Police also explained to the customer why the employee walked away from him, but he was still upset, felt discriminated against, and decided to file a police report.

Police Contacts

The Voice thanks Noe Valley Police Officer Lorraine Lombardo for providing the incident reports for this month's Police Beat. Officer Lombardo, along with Mission Station Captain Ron Roth, encourages Noe Valley residents and merchants to attend the police-community meeting held the last Tuesday of the month at Mission Station, 630 Valencia Street. The next meeting is Nov. 27 at 6 p.m.

Mission Police Station covers the northern half of Noe Valley, from 21st Street to Cesar Chavez. Residents are welcome to call the station at 558-5400 or send e-mail to sfpdmissionstation@ To report anonymously on drugs, gangs, or other crime, call the non-traceable police hotline at 558-5452.

Those Noe Valleyans who live south of Cesar Chavez fall within the Ingleside Police District. Ingleside community meetings are held on the third Tuesday of the month at Ingleside Station, 1 Sergeant John Young Lane, off San Jose Avenue. The next meeting is set for Nov. 20 at 7 p.m. To contact Ingleside Station, call Captain Marsha Ashe at 404-4000 or e-mail

To report a crime in progress, call 911. (Cell phone users should dial 553-8090.)