The car break-in task force will be known as "Operation Tangled Web," and we’ll see how many burglaries it prevents in the five days until the District Attorney election.
Generally in San Francisco politics, the announcement of a “task force” is one of the weakest tactical moves an elected official can make to fight a commonly acknowledged public problem. But for district attorney candidate Suzy Loftus, who also happens to be be interim district attorney following George Gascón’s sudden resignation and Mayor Breed’s appointing her, this is a great opportunity to stand at City Hall podiums with a row of uniformed officers behind her. And so she has, as ABC 7 reports that Loftus is establishing a car break-in task force, in hopes of addressing the frustration at a very real San Francisco problem.
The details are pretty mundane; it’s a 60-day task force with representatives from the DA’s office and law enforcement that Loftus said at her Thursday announcement, would “target residential hotspots and small commercial corridors.” What is less mundane is that the announcement comes less than a week before the election.
When ABC 7 asked her about the curious, five-days-before-the-election timing of the announcement, Loftus told the station, “I'm focused on doing this job and when we have an opportunity to convene this type of a team to get right to work at tackling the issue then that's what I'm going to do."
Her leading opponent Chesa Boudin was keener to tout his new Bernie Sanders endorsement, which he told the Chronicle was a sign his campaign is “building a movement of national significance.” Boudin is known for stating he would scale back enforcement on petty crimes.
There are two other candidates in the district attorney race, and one of them is not pleased because he basically announced just days ago that if elected, he’d do the same thing. “I campaigned for the last year, specifically, on creating an auto burglary task force by working with the police and sheriff,” Dautch told the Chron. “San Franciscans witness brazen theft every day from cars and stores — usually it’s not the politicians doing the stealing, though. This is political plagiarism at its worst.”
Rounding out the field, another candidate Nancy Tung hinted that the task force would be meaningless and symbolic. “To release something on this short of time without much substance is more political than substantive,” Tung said to the Chronicle. “It’s unfortunate the office is being used this way.”
Image: moohaha via Flickr