A newly sworn-in San Francisco police officer tested positive on Aug. 14, a day after graduating alongside 28 other recruits of the 269th Academy Class. Police Academy staff and other members of the class have since tested positive. (Courtesy SFPD)

SF police record ‘alarming’ spike in COVID-19 cases among officers

San Francisco police have recorded an “alarming” spike in officers testing positive for the coronavirus as cases more than doubled in the last week alone after a possible outbreak at the Police Academy.

Thirty officers have tested positive for COVID-19 since last Monday, in a sharp jump from the prior five months when 22 officers were confirmed to have the illness, according to new numbers from the San Francisco Police Department.

The most significant upticks happened last Monday and Tuesday when results came back positive for a total of 26 officers.

Officer Robert Rueca, a police spokesperson, could not confirm that all of those cases are related to the academy, but said a “good portion” are.

The department first learned that a newly sworn-in officer tested positive at the academy on Aug. 14, a day after graduating alongside 28 other recruits of the 269th Academy Class, according to police.

Academy staff and other members of the class have since tested positive.

Police said the academy has “undergone a deep cleaning” and is reviewing its safety protocols “to ensure the safest possible learning environment for students and staff.”

Two other classes that are in session will be learning remotely for the time being. Some members of the 270th and 272nd classes have tested negative, police said.

Overall, 83 members of the department are being quarantined and may return to duty after consulting with the police physician.

“The department has taken measures to protect officers and the public by screening for illness and flu symptoms,” Rueca said. “We have implemented safety and health protocols for [Personal Protective Equipment], hygiene and social distancing.”

Police Chief Bill Scott called the uptick “alarming and concerning” at a Board of Supervisors committee hearing on Friday.

“We’ve had a spike in the department over the last two months,” Scott said. “We went the first three months of COVID with only five or six positive cases. We now have over 40.”

The jump in cases also worried San Francisco Police Officers Association President Tony Montoya.

“We are concerned by the uptick in positive COVID cases and appreciate the department working to ensure officers are equipped with the appropriate PPE and sanitation supplies,” Montoya said. “We encourage anyone with symptoms to stay home and call your healthcare provider.”

KTVU first reported the positive cases at the academy last Monday.

By the numbers

Officers who have tested positive for COVID-19 by assignment:

  • Airport Bureau: 5
  • Administrative Bureau: 23
  • Field Operations Bureau: 17
  • Investigations Bureau: 4
  • Special Operations Bureau: 3
  • Total: 52

Source: San Francisco Police Department

Bay Area NewsCoronavirusCrimesan francisco news

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

Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer, a former school board member, said Thursday it was ‘ridiculous’ that the school district did not yet have a plan to reopen. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Supervisors demand SFUSD set a timeline for reopening

Pressure grows on district to resume in-person learning as The City’s COVID-19 case count goes down

The San Francisco International Arts Festival will present performances this weekend outdoors at Fort Mason, including on the Parade Ground, Eucalyptus Grove and Black Point Battery. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF International Arts Festival wins health department approval for weekend performances

Rules allow no more than 50 people at outdoor Fort Mason performances

A lab worker from the Medical Examiner’s Office was arrested with an evidence bag of methamphetamine in August. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Audit over lab worker meth arrest finds medical examiner is missing drugs

An audit of the Medical Examiner’s Office prompted by the arrest of… Continue reading

City officials argue that the dominance of a few third-party delivery services gives them disproportionate leverage against restaurants. (Courtesy photo)
Cap on food delivery app fees may remain until indoor dining allowed at full capacity

Proposal seen as financial relief for restaurants struggling in pandemic

Most Read