A Letter from Supporters of the #Frisco5 to the San Francisco Police Commission:
Remove Greg Suhr at May 11, 2016 Meeting
Harrowing Surveillance Video Shows Scene Of Latest SFPD Officer-Involved Shooting
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) - New surveillance video released by an anonymous source Friday shows San Francisco police…
Dear San Francisco Police Commissioners:
We, concerned citizens of San Francisco, plead with you to do your job, represent us, and terminate SFPD Chief Greg Suhr at your meeting on May 11, 2016. Chief Greg Suhr is responsible for a culture of excessive use of deadly force, racism, and lack of cooperation with investigators at SFPD. We have no confidence in his ability to get SFPD officers to comply with policy. He must go. You can terminate him. We plead you to do so.
Chief Greg Suhr is responsible for SFPD’s consistent excessive use of deadly force.
Since 2011 when Mayor Ed Lee appointed Greg Suhr Chief of Police, SFPD has killed 21 people. In addition to the excessive use of deadly force in the killings of Alex Nieto (shot 59 times, police opened fire within 2 minutes of arriving on scene), Amilcar Perez Lopez (shot 6 times in the back), and Mario Woods (shot 20 times), Luis Gongora Demetrio Pat (shot 7 times, police opened fire within 30 seconds of arriving on scene) Suhr’s tenure has been fraught with racially biased policing.
Chief Greg Suhr is indisputably responsible for SFPD’s culture of “shoot first” because every time there is an officer-involved shooting Suhr rushes to exculpate the officers involved instead of waiting for an investigation to reveal the facts. For example, in the Amilcar Perez Lopez case, Chief Suhr claimed the officers shot him in self-defense. The autopsy revealed Amilcar, who exclusively spoke Spanish, was shot 6 times in the back by plainclothes officers who spoke to him only in English as he was trying to retrieve his stolen cell phone.
Independent Autopsy Contradicts SFPD's Story In Year-Old Officer-Involved Shooting
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) - Evidence from an independent autopsy is contradicting the San Francisco Police Department's…
The clear message Chief Suhr sends to SFPD is they can kill San Franciscans with impunity because he will rush to defend them without examining the evidence of whether their acts are defensible. The clear result are the many deaths on his watch.
Chief Greg Suhr is responsible for SFPD’s racist culture.
Last week, the public learned the content of the most recent racist texts exchanged by SFPD officers, obtained during an unrelated investigation.
The officers involved in the 2015 racist text scandal, also discovered during an unrelated investigation, remain on the job because although Internal Affairs had access to the texts, they declined to investigate them and the statute of limitations ran out.
That two unrelated investigations unearthed so many racist texts exchanged between police officers under Chief Suhr’s tenure demonstrates SFPD’s racist culture and complete disregard for ethics, rules, and common sense.
Employees of any other organization know that exchanging racist text messages with colleagues at work is completely unacceptable and grounds for termination.
SFPD officers, who carry guns, clearly feel that they can send racist texts at work with impunity, causing the public to fear SFPD. Both District Attorney George Gascon and Public Defender Jeff Adachi are on record as calling SFPD “systemically racist.”
Chief Greg Suhr has set the tone for a racist culture to thrive at SFPD.
Chief Greg Suhr is responsible for SFPD’s noncompliance with investigations.
The public cannot have confidence Chief Suhr’s leadership because he does not role model cooperation with investigators, engaging in very public disputes with District Attorney George Gascon.
The clear message Chief Suhr sends to SFPD is that they are not accountable to anyone.
Conviction that San Francisco is in a state of crisis is widespread; public officials have been unresponsive.
Concerned San Franciscans have attended every meeting of the Police Commission, the Blue Ribbon Panel appointed by District Attorney George Gascon, and the United States Department of Justice COPS Collaborative Review. We have provided hours of testimony about the need for new leadership of the rogue, racist, and violent San Francisco Police Department that demonstrates no respect for the law, citizens nor public officials. We have urged Mayor Ed Lee and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors to rein in SFPD. We have appealed to US Attorney General Loretta Lynch to conduct a civil rights pattern and practice investigation. We have appealed to California Attorney General Kamala Harris to investigate and reorganize SFPD under consent decree. We have asked District Attorney George Gascon to charge the police involved in the Alex Nieto, Amilcar Perez Lopez, and Mario Woods shootings with murder.
No amount of public input through existing channels has created urgency for new leadership of SFPD.
SFPD does not follow your directives, either. You have been trying to issue a new Use of Force policy, and the San Francisco Police Officers Association is resisting you, issuing its own proposed Use of Force Policy on April 6, 2016. The very next day, in blatant disregard of the use of force policy currently in effect, SFPD struck again, killing Luis Gongora Demetrio Pat within 30 seconds of arriving on the scene.
Luis’ killing convinced the #Frisco5 that a hunger strike was necessary to reform SFPD.
The incremental reforms you, the USDOJ COPS office, and the Blue Ribbon Panel propose will mean nothing on the street unless there is a change in leadership because SFPD under Chief Suhr does not comply with existing policy.
On May 5, 2016, Mayor Ed Lee said he has no intention of firing Chief Suhr and stands by his leadership.
We now appeal to you to remove Chief Suhr at your May 11, 2016 meeting, day 21 of the #Frisco5 hunger strike. We will provide ample testimony about how Chief Greg Suhr has failed to discipline officers, hold SFPD accountable, and has created a hostile environment where San Franciscans fear for their safety at the hands of SFPD.
It is within your power under the Charter of San Francisco to remove the Police Chief. We urge you to do so to keep San Franciscans safe from SFPD.
We urge you to do so to not add another 5 black and brown people to the list of 21 killed by SFPD under Greg Suhr’s leadership.
If you were a school board and Greg Suhr the superintendent, if you were a corporate board and he the CEO, if you were the owner of a sports team and he the coach he would have been gone long ago.
The lives of the #Frisco5 are in your hands. Our lives are in your hands, too.
We need a new leader to restore the public’s confidence in SFPD by holding officers accountable for complying with ethics, rules, and common sense. This is the most important first step in completely transforming SFPD.
We expect to see “Greg Suhr Performance Review” as an agenda item when you release the agenda at 5 pm today. We expect you to vote to remove him at the May 11 2016 meeting.
Supporters of the #Frisco5