Daly City man files brutality complaint against S.S.F. police

A Daly City man has filed a brutality complaint against South San Francisco police stemming from a recent incident on Briarwood Avenue in which police say the man became unruly and began hurting himself.

Mauricio Cuadra, a 27-year-old Daly City resident, said in the early morning of July 8, he was unnecessarily punched and kicked while being handcuffed on public drunkenness charges. Cuadra said police placed him in a canvas straitjacket, and then punched him while simultaneously tightening the device.

Cuadra, who has sought advice from several lawyers, said that while he had been drinking, he wasn’t drunk and is arguing that none of his actions warranted such a reaction.

“I did nothing to provoke them to do what they did to me,” Cuadra said. “I thought I was going to die that day.”

Police Chief Mark Raffaelli said his department received a call that night for a man (Cuadra) in the street on Briarwood who had apparently been beat up. When officers approached, Cuadra was intoxicated, Raffaelli said, and police questioned him but he didn’t know where he was or what had happened.

Raffaelli said that when police put him into a car, Cuadra began yelling and hitting his head against the car. Officers took him out of the car and called paramedics, who patched Cuadra up and took him to the hospital.

The complaint comes as the department faces a lawsuit from the family of Julio Ayala, alleging that the 26-year-old died from the use of excessive force by police in April 2005. An investigation into that incident by the San Mateo County’s District Attorney’s Office found no cause to file criminal charges against officers.

In the wake of the complaint filed Monday, Raffaelli defended his department, saying that while such complaints are not unheard of, they are still very rare.

“I would say that [the department] does not have a problem,” Raffaelli said.

Capt. Mike Massoni of the South San Francisco Police Department said that after the complaint is filed, the chief reviews it and then Massoni assigns a supervisor from inside the department to investigate the incident.

Foster City Police Capt. Mike Martell said such complaints were very rare, even though the causes can range from a police officer applying handcuffs too tightly to incidents such as the one in question.

“Somebody might use the word ‘brutality,’ but that could fit anywhere in that range,” Martell said.

Bay Area NewsLocal

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Organizer Jas Florentino, left, explains the figures which represent 350 kidnapped Africans first sold as slaves in the United States in 1619 in sculptor Dana King’s “Monumental Reckoning.” The installation is in the space of the former Francis Scott Key monument in Golden Gate Park. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
What a reparations program would look like in The City

‘If there’s any place we can do it, it’s San Francisco’

Officer Joel Babbs at a protest outside the Hall of Justice in 2017 (Bay City News file photo)
The strange and troubling story of Joel Babbs: What it tells us about the SFPD

The bizarre and troubling career of a whistle-blowing San Francisco police officer… Continue reading

Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks at a COVID-19 update at the City College of San Francisco mass vaccination site in April. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Gavin Newsom under COVID: The governor dishes on his pandemic life

By Emily Hoeven CalMatters It was strange, after 15 months of watching… Continue reading

People fish at a dock at Islais Creek Park on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
What Islais Creek tells us about rising sea levels in San Francisco

Islais Creek is an unassuming waterway along San Francisco’s eastern industrial shoreline,… Continue reading

Deputy public defender Chris Garcia outside the Hall of Justice on Wednesday, June 16, 2021. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
As pandemic wanes, SF public defender hopes clients will get ‘their day in court’

Like other attorneys in San Francisco, Deputy Public Defender Chris Garcia has… Continue reading

Most Read