Police chief orders reinforcements for violence-plagued Mission

Violence has exploded in the Mission district this week and a surge in police numbers in the neighborhood has failed to quell gang-related killings. Six people have died from gunshot wounds in the area in two weeks.

San Francisco police Chief Heather Fong said Friday that the department would use overtime funds to put additional police in the area.

During a press conference to announce the extra resources, Fong read from a prepared statement and refused to answer questions about the violence or about police investigations.

The department will raise the number of foot patrol officers, squad cars and specialized units in the neighborhood, Fong said. The department is also working with officials at nearby Mission High School and coordinating efforts with the California Highway Patrol and other state and federal agencies.

The department will use overtime pay to help fund the surge of officers in the Mission to prevent stripping other neighborhoods of resources, Fong said.

An increased police presence in the Mission was in effect by Thursday night, but that didn’t prevent two separate shootings in the neighborhood that killed two people.

At approximately 9:45 p.m., three people were shot on the corner of 24th and Utah streets. Two Hispanic males died in the shooting, and the third victim, a black female, was sent to the hospital with non life-threatening injuries.

The Medical Examiner’s Officer identified the victims as 19-year old San Francisco resident Noel Espinoza and 23-year old San Mateo County resident Matthew Solomon.

Police said the suspect, a Hispanic male, shot the three victims before fleeing in a gray minivan.

About three hours earlier, a Hispanic male and a Hispanic female both suffered life-threatening injuries after they were shot in a car on 18th and Bryant streets. Police said two suspects, both Hispanic males, fled the scene in a silver compact sedan.

The streets were filled on Tuesday night with patrol officers following the shooting death of Mark Guardado Sr., the 45-year old president of the San Francisco branch of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, by a motorcyclist nearby at the corner of Treat and 24th streets.

Police spokesman Sgt. Wilfred Williams on Friday said that no arrests had been made in connection with the shootings.

Supervisor Tom Ammiano, whose district includes parts of the Mission, said two more people are expected to die from the two Thursday night shootings, which he said were part of a “historic gang feud.”

Ammiano said he feared “more retaliation” on the streets and called for at least 50 more patrol officers in the area to help manage the “crisis emergency situation.”

Mayor Gavin Newsom said a number of the victims and suspects of homicides this year lived outside of The City.

“The good news is, violent crime is down this year,” he said.

jupton@sfexaminer

wreisman@sfexaminer

Examiner Staff Writer Josh Sabatini contributed to this report.

Recent homicides in the Mission district

  • – Aug. 22: Samuel Mitchell, 47, fatally shot at 26th and Folsom streets
  • – Aug. 24: Jorge Hurtado, 18, fatally shot at 23rd and Treat streets
  • – Monday: Marcelino Canul-Castro fatally shot at San Carlos and 18th streets
  • – Tuesday: Mark Guardado, president of the San Francisco Hells Angels chapter, fatally shot near 24th and Treat streets
  • – Thursday: Noel Espinoza, 19, and Matthew Solomon, 23, fatally shot at Utah and 24th streets.

Bay Area NewsCrimeCrime & CourtsLocal

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

Harlan Kelly, head of the SFPUC and husband to City Administrator Naomi Kelly (right), faces federal charges for allegedly trading inside information on a city contract in return for a paid family vacation. (Courtesy photo)
Harlan Kelly, head of SFPUC, charged with fraud in widening Nuru scandal

Kelly accused of engaging in corrupt partnership with permit expediter

Jeff Tumlin, director of transportation for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, said the agency’s fiscal situation is “far worse” than the worse case scenarios projected back in April. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFMTA prepares for massive potential layoffs as budget crisis continues to build

More than 1,200 full-time jobs on the line as agency struggles to close deficit

California Gov. Gavin Newsom is weighing further restrictions as COVID-19 cases rise. (Genaro Molina/Pool/Los Angeles Times/TNS)
Newom considering new shelter-in-place order as COVID-19 cases rise

Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday warned that he may need to reinstate… Continue reading

Nicole Canedo looks at her City-issued Medical Reimbursement Account page on her computer outside her Berkeley apartment on Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2020. Canedo has worked numerous retail jobs in The City and the MRA has helped her with health costs. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Millions left sitting in medical reimbursement accounts by city workers

Health officials looking at how to improve access, outreach as untapped funds reach $409M

Andrew Faulk wrote "My Epidemic." (Courtesy photo)
Doctor’s memoir a fitting remembrance for World AIDS Day

‘My Epidemic’ tells personal stories of men who died

Most Read