Last week, if you recall, SF Chron columnist C.W. Nevius wrote about bullies with pit bull terrorizing the Haight neighborhood. A day later, SFist heard word that SFPD cleaned up said neighborhood a wee bit, making the streets safer for tender residents.
Today, Nevius confirms our original story. "Haight Street is looking great," types Nevius. "Police patrols from the Park Station have been issuing citations to dog owners without licenses and confronting aggressive panhandlers."
Last week's thug crackdown extended throughout the week. Although "more than two dozen people have been cited and police presence has been a constant" in the one-time hippie-dippy neighborhood, quality-of-life citations don't seem to do much and take too much time to process.
The recent Haight Street cleansing, Nevius goes on to congratulate, is allegedly because of shiny new Police Chief George Gascón.
But the real key is that someone from outside, Police Chief George Gascón, has stepped up to ask the unpleasant questions. He's going to push a "sit/lie" law, even though political veterans scoff at his chances with the wishy-washy Board of Supervisors. Gascón asks why, if Berkeley can do it, San Francisco can't.
"The cops come in because everything else has failed," Gascón said. "We have to decide, long term, what our tolerance level is for things like aggressive panhandling and thugs with dogs."
Thugs With Dogs, coincidentally, is a great name for an urban capella group. You're welcome.
Anyway, peace has come to the Haight. For now. What's more, Sgt. Bill Herndon, an animal control officer who issued 21 license citations and impounded two pit bulls after the story broke, declared that "in two weeks if you see dogs on the sidewalk, they are going to have licenses." Please make a note of it.