A San Francisco man stands accused of vandalizing 20 Chinese-owned businesses in the city, as well as seven others, and he faces burglary charges and hate-crime enhancements as well.
36-year-old San Francisco resident Derik Barreto was set to be arraigned Monday on 33 separate charges, and District Attorney Chesa Boudin's office put out a release to highlight the work being done to combat hate-driven vandalism, and vandalism of businesses in general.
As KPIX reports, Barreto is suspected of riding around the Mission District and the Ocean Avenue corridor on a scooter, between April and August of this year, and targeting businesses with a slingshot, a hammer, and/or a piece of pipe. He's been charged with 27 total counts of vandalism, most of those targeting Chinese-owned businesses. And he also faces four felony counts of second-degree burglary, a misdemeanor count of possession of burglary tools, and a misdemeanor count of possession of a concealed weapon, and hate crime enhancement are attached to 31 of his charges.
It appears that Barreto may be the suspect in one vandalism incident in Chinatown in June, which KPIX previously reported involved a suspect on a scooter who broke a window with a slingshot on more than one occasion.
Chase Luck Bakery on Ocean Avenue was targeted by likely the same suspect on a scooter, and they said on a GoFundMe page that the business was hit by the same vandal four times.
The video below shows the suspect smash the front door, enter the business, break something else inside using a pipe, and then leave. The bakery owner says it cost $4,000 every time one of the windows was smashed.
After Barreto's arrest, he apparently made statements to police confirming racial animus and saying he targeted these businesses because they were Asian.
"We absolutely do not tolerate violence or hate in San Francisco," Boudin said in a statement. "Chinese-owned businesses should be able to operate without fear of being racially targeted by vandalism, burglary, or harassment. We stand with San Francisco’s AAPI community against hate and will do everything in our power to make sure everyone is and feels safe."
Boudin continued, "Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen a deeply concerning increase in the incidence of hate and violence against the AAPI community. We will not stand for it and we will do everything in our power to stop it."