Noe Valley Voice March 2004

Police Beat

Police Beat is a roundup of crimes and other police incidents occurring in Noe Valley, defined as the area bordered by Grand View, 21st, Fair Oaks, and 30th streets. The following crime summaries were culled from incident reports filed at Mission and Ingleside police stations during January 2004.

Dog Bite: 1:15 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 6; 400 block of Valley Street

A 70-year-old resident of the 400 block of Valley Street reported to police that he was bitten on the hand by a neighbor's unleashed dog. The older man reported that when he arrived home on Jan. 6, he saw the dog sniffing the plants in front of his house. When he held out his hand to pet the dog, the dog bit it.

The dog's owner, a resident of the 300 block of Valley Street who was walking about 100 feet behind his dog, allegedly refused to give his name or drive the victim to the hospital. The victim was treated for three small puncture wounds at California Pacific Medical Center.

Police notified the owner of the dog that he must quarantine it for 10 days and report to the Department of Public Health if the dog gets sick or dies.

Burglary: Between noon and 8 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 7; 4100 block of Cesar Chavez Street

A 31-year-old woman reported to police that all three doors to the residence she shares with her husband had been unlocked and that numerous pieces of jewelry and two cameras had been stolen during the afternoon of Wednesday, Jan. 7.

The husband told officers he left the house fully secure at noon; his wife returned at 8 p.m. and discovered the theft. The couple said a set of keys was missing and that four contractors had been at their home in the previous week to provide estimates and might have had access to the missing keys.

Suspicious Occurrence: Between 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 8, and 7:30 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 9; 1200 block of Noe Street

A man told police he had left his bedroom door locked and in good condition on Thursday evening, Jan. 8, but when he returned the next morning, the door had been pried open. Nothing was taken. Apparently the man and his roommate were in the habit of leaving their front door unlocked so that visitors could come and go freely. The roommate claimed to know nothing of the forced bedroom door. Police suggested the men lock their front door in the future.

Theft of Vehicle: Between 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 9, and 4 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 10; 1400 block of Sanchez Street

Someone stole a red, four-door 1991 Honda Civic from the 1400 block of Sanchez Street on the night of Jan. 9. The car bears the license plate 2ZCC984 and is registered to a resident of the same block.

Theft of Vehicle: Between 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 10, and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 11; Chattanooga and Church streets

A resident of 21st Street discovered his car missing on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 11. The silver 1996 Honda Accord sedan has a Gold's Gym sticker in the rear window and a Delta Airlines sticker on the front windshield. It bears the license plate 3SVJ229.

Theft: Between 2 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 12, and 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 13; 4000 block of 24th Street

A 39-year-old woman reported to police that her laptop computer was stolen from a desk in the back of the store where she worked. Because employees had allowed customers to use the store's restroom unsupervised, anyone could have taken the computer, she told police. She said there were no surveillance cameras in the rear of the store.

Grand Theft: Tuesday, Jan. 13; at a Noe Valley bank

Two Dolores Street residents, both in their 70s, reported that several family heirlooms had been stolen from their safe deposit box at a bank in Noe Valley. The sisters discovered on Jan. 13 that some items of expensive jewelry were missing from their box, but said they were too "scared and upset" to report the theft to police until Jan. 17.

A police officer met them in front of the bank and later accompanied them into the vault to look through the contents of their safe deposit box. To everyone's surprise, all of the missing items, except for a black satin coin purse, were in the box. One of the sisters said, "Oh my God, they put it all back!" The sisters told the officer they believed the thief got scared and returned their heirlooms.

(It should be noted that Noe Valley Police Officer Lorraine Lombardo was given the "Best Investigation of the Week" award at Mission Police Station for her work on this case.)

Burglary: Between 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 13, and 5:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 14; 4100 block of 24th Street

A 41-year-old man told police the back window of his vehicle had been broken in the early hours of Wednesday, Jan. 14, and several items stolen, including CDs and his FastTrak responder. He said he heard a loud noise at about 5:30 a.m., coming from the garage where his automobile was stored. He looked out his front window and saw a silver minivan backing out of the garage. The other two vehicles in the garage were not burglarized.

Burglary: Between 5:15 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 14, and 5:15 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 15, 1700 block of Diamond Street

A 41-year-old man reported that his tools, which he estimated were worth more than $10,000, had been stolen from a house that was under construction in the 1700 block of Diamond Street. There was no sign of forced entry; the man told police he had hidden a key to the house in a location known only to the painters.

Theft of Vehicle: Between 6:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 14, and 6 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 17; Church and 23rd streets

A maroon 1987 Toyota van was stolen from near the corner of Church and 23rd streets sometime between Jan. 14 and 17. The van bears the license plate 5V83649 and is registered to a resident of McAllister Street.

Theft: Between Thursday, Jan. 15, and Friday, Jan. 16; 1300 block of Castro Street

An overzealous science-fiction fan stole 19 sci-fi books from a local bookstore. The store's co-owner said she had noticed a black briefcase on a chair near the science-fiction area before she left the store on the evening of Jan. 15. The next day, a worker told police he noticed a large gap in the science-fiction section; the briefcase was still nearby. One of the missing books was in the briefcase, which contained identifying papers. The mysterious briefcase was booked as evidence by police.

Theft: Between 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 16, and 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 17: 1700 block of Dolores Street

A 35-year-old resident of the 1700 block of Dolores Street reported that his mountain bike was stolen from inside his residential parking area. He said he believed that the unknown suspect "jimmied the lock to the garage" or that one of his neighbors had left the gate open.

Theft of Vehicle: Between 1 and 3 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 19; 1600 block of Diamond Street

A 44-year-old resident of the 1600 block of Diamond Street reported his black 2002 Acura SUV stolen from near his home during the early hours of Jan. 19. The vehicle bears the license plate 4WPR451.

Attempted Robbery: 7:20 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 20; Sanchez and 27th streets

A 34-year-old resident of the 1400 block of Sanchez Street reported that a person attempted to rob him as he was walking home. The suspect, a male approximately 20 years old, first requested that the victim give him a dollar. When the victim refused, the suspect demanded a dollar and then grabbed the victim and said, "Give me all your money!" The victim ran away from the would-be robber down Sanchez Street. Police were unable to find the suspect.

Theft: Reported Wednesday, Jan. 21; 3900 block of 24th Street

A video store owner called the cops on a recalcitrant renter when she failed to return the movies Finding Nemo, Identity, and Laurel Canyon. The tapes had been checked out since Friday, Nov. 14. In addition to the movies, the renter also owes 66 days' (and counting) worth of late fees. The store owner attempted to notify the renter of the overdue films by phone and mail, but got no response.

Theft of Vehicle: Between 6:45 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 22, and 8:15 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 23; 25th and Dolores streets

A white 1993 Honda Accord was stolen from the corner of 25th and Dolores streets on the evening of Thursday, Jan. 22. The vehicle bears the California license plate 3HEA437 and is registered to a resident of Brisbane, Calif.

Theft: Between 7 and 8:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 23; 100 block of San Jose Avenue

A plant thief absconded with a palm tree valued at $150 on Friday evening, Jan. 23. The plant owner, a resident of the 100 block of San Jose Avenue, told police the tree was in her garden when she left for dinner, but was missing when she returned. She added that there was a large hole in her garden where the tree had previously been planted.

Theft of Vehicle: Between 9 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 23, and 10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 24; Hill and Church streets

The night of Jan. 23, someone stole a silver 2003 Acura from the corner of Hill and Church streets. The car bears the Texas license plate 588RTZ and is owned by a resident of Austin, Tex.

License Plate Stolen: Approximately 8 a.m., Tuesday, Jan. 27; 1500 block of Dolores Street

A 35-year-old resident of the 1500 block of Dolores Street reported that his vehicle's rear license plate (4YPT872) was gone and had been replaced with a different one (OKIKNOW). The replacement plate was traced to a 2002 green Volkswagen Passat that had been reported stolen in San Bruno, Calif.

Vandalism to Vehicle: 4 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 28; 4000 block of 24th Street

A 34-year-old woman summoned police to her van, which was double-parked in front of a health spa on the 4000 block of 24th Street. She told police a man had yelled at her and called her names and that he had hit or perhaps kicked her vehicle. The woman said the man had then gone into the spa. Spa staff confirmed that a man matching the suspect's description was currently in one of the hot tubs, and they retrieved him from the bath. The man admitted to police that he had been jaywalking across 24th Street, but claimed that the woman driving the van had slammed on her brakes causing him to lose his balance and brace himself against her car. The woman decided to make a citizen's arrest, and the man was cited and released. Officers advised him against jaywalking in the future. The date of the incident was the man's 31st birthday.

Attempted Theft of Vehicle: Between 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 30, and 10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 31, Dolores and Valley streets

A 55-year-old resident of the first block of Valley Street reported that her daughter's car had been tampered with. She told police the ignition would no longer accept the key and the CD player had been stolen. The car is a black 1997 Honda Civic coupe and bears the license plate 3WVL259. The woman's 17-year-old daughter was out of the country at the time of the attempted theft and had lent her car to her mother.

The Voice thanks Mission Police Officer Lorraine Lombardo and Ingleside Police Officer Mike Smith for providing the incident reports for this month's Police Beat. The reports were summarized by Voice writer and editor Erin O'Briant.

Your Links to the SFPD

Noe Valley residents and merchants are invited to attend police-community meetings held monthly in the Mission and Ingleside police districts. The next meeting at Mission Station will be Tuesday, March 23, 6 p.m., at 630 Valencia Street near 17th Street. The next Ingleside meeting will be Tuesday, March 16, 7 p.m., at Ingleside Station, 1 Sgt. John Young Lane, off the 2000 block of San Jose Avenue.

Meanwhile, those who live or work north of Cesar Chavez Street can report recurring problems by phoning Mission Station at 558-5400 or e-mailing Captain Greg Corrales at gregory_corrales (To report anonymously on drugs, gangs, or other crimes, call the non-traceable hotline at 558-5452.) Residents and merchants in "outer" Noe Valley--south of Cesar Chavez Street--can contact Ingleside Station by calling 404-4000 or e-mailing Captain Kevin Dillon at To report a crime in progress, call 911. (Cell phone users, dial 553-8090.) To talk to San Francisco police about a non-emergency situation, call 553-0123.