DA may target Muni drivers in San Francisco traffic deaths

Examiner file photoVictim: Police said Emily Dunn had almost finished crossing the street when she was fatally struck by a Muni bus in August.

Criminal charges could be filed against the Muni bus operator who fatally struck 23-year-old Emily Dunn on Aug. 19.

San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón said on Tuesday his office is considering criminal charges in recent high-profile traffic deaths, including the Muni accident and a two-car crash in July involving a UC San Francisco shuttle that killed a doctor. Gascón said both accidents were preventable, and the drivers could face negligence or manslaughter charges. He did not say when the charges will be filed.

Gascón’s office recently filed a misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter charge against a bicyclist who struck and killed an elderly woman near the Ferry Building.

Dunn was fatally struck while she was crossing Hartford Street in the Castro district. Police officers at the time said Dunn was about “90 percent” finished crossing the road when she was hit by the bus, which was acting as a supplementary shuttle service for the F-Market historic streetcar line. Muni spokesman Paul Rose said that the operator involved in the accident has been placed on nondriving status, pending the DA’s investigation. His identity has not been released.

In another incident being targeted by the DA’s Office, a UCSF shuttle bus driver could face criminal charges for his role in a July crash in Hayes Valley that claimed the life of Dr. Kevin Mack. A witness at the scene said the UCSF shuttle bus ran a red light and collided with a big-rig truck at Octavia Boulevard and Oak street. As a result, Mack was ejected from the vehicle, later dying from his injuries.

wreisman@sfexaminer.com

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