String of car break-ins in San Francisco neighborhood

Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – There has been a decrease in auto burglaries in San Francisco but shattered glass on the street is the tell-tale sign that the smash and grab problem continues.

However, what one man saw this morning, was beyond anything he has seen before.

“Van Ness between Bay and Francisco. Nothing to see here,” resident Ryan McCarthy said. 

Nothing other than close to a dozen vehicles with passenger windows smashed, glove boxes open, ransacked, personal belongings emptied onto the passenger seat.

Waking up to the site of shattered glass on the ground from a smash and grab is not uncommon but Ryan McCarthy has lived in this Russian Hill neighborhood for 12-years and has never seen anything like this.

“I have never seen an entire block hit like that,” McCarthy said. 

In response to the ongoing auto-burglary problem, San Francisco police urge residents and visitors to Park Smart — It is an education campaign on how to limit the chances of a vehicle break-in.

“They’ll think that they’re only going to be gone for a couple of minutes and then they’ll be back in the car. They’ll leave backpacks, cameras, or anything visible on the seats. It only takes criminals seconds. Sometimes it’s just opportunists walking down the street and sometimes we get crews coming in,” Officer Tiffany Hang said. 

“If you think about the amount of time that must have taken for all those cars and to have absolutely no fear. Clearly, there is no one policing this. It’s pretty frustrating to see day in and day out,” McCarthy said. 

He says he would like to see SFPD do something about putting a stop to it.

“I would like to see an increased police presence at night,” McCarthy said. 

“We constantly reassess crime trends. When district stations notice there is more crime in a certain area they’ll readjust their patrol staffing,” Hang said.

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