SF District Attorney Brooke Jenkins said some pointed things Thursday aimed squarely at Elon Musk and others who took to bashing San Francisco immediately in the wake of a tech executive's stabbing death last week.
Following this morning's arrest of 38-year-old tech entrepreneur Nima Momeni in Emeryville, in connection with the April 4 murder of Bob Lee near San Francisco's Rincon Hill, the DA's office filed a murder charge against Momeni, with a knife enhancement. Jenkins and SFPD Chief Bill Scott then gave a press conference Thursday afternoon to announce the charges and take questions.
"I know acts of violence like this shake our communities and I thank the San Francisco Police Department for their tireless efforts to solve this case," Jenkins said in a statement. "With this arrest, we will now work to bring justice and closure for Mr. Lee's family, friends, and our city that has been gripped by this case."
At the press conference, both Scott and Jenkins directly addressed the viral tweet by Elon Musk — who claimed to know "many" victims who had been "severely assaulted" on San Francisco's streets, and asked Jenkins what she was going to do about the case.
"Statements like those contained in Mr. Musk’s tweet that assumed incorrect circumstances about Mr. Lee’s death serve to mislead the world in their perceptions of San Francisco," Jenkins said, per the Chronicle. "It spreads misinformation at a time when the police are trying to solve a very difficult case."
And in a tweet Thursday, Jenkins said, "As a society we must resist the urge to rush to conclusions about crimes before all facts are available... Spreading misinformation or hyperbolic messages serves against victims of crime & the interests of justice."
5/ As a society we must resist the urge to rush to conclusions about crimes before all facts are available.— Brooke Jenkins 謝安宜 (@BrookeJenkinsSF) April 13, 2023
It's my duty to follow the facts & evidence wherever they lead. Spreading misinformation or hyperbolic messages serves against victims of crime & the interests of justice.
Chief Scott echoed those thoughts, saying, "This is not about San Francisco. It happened in San Francisco and that is unfortunate. It’s even more a tragedy that it happened at all. But this speaks to more about human nature."
Elon Musk has, predictably, been silent on the matter, though one of his lackeys, Jason Calacanis, did tweet today about the "thousands of violent crimes that occur every month" in SF (which is not based in fact).
Defender of San Francisco and Season of the Witch author David Talbot was pretty pointed in comments he made about the tech industry and this murder on Facebook today:
Department of I Told You So -- The tragic murder of tech executive Bob Lee on the streets of San Francisco was widely portrayed in the local press (that's you SF Chronicle and SF Standard and TV news shows) and the national media as the latest example of the city's "crazy dystopia," as one tech industry mogul put it. But as I told friends, Lee's stabbing in a pre-dawn hour smelled to me like a personal attack -- not a random killing by a crazed homeless person as it was alleged.
Now it turns out that the primary SFPD suspect in the murder is another tech executive, Nima Momeni, a friend of Lee who was riding with him in the same car. Will the tech industry -- and the press -- now apologize for accusing San Francisco of descending into wanton violence?
I can just as well accuse the tech industry and its political and media patrons of laying waste to this once beautiful city. As I told San Francisco tech billionaire Ron Conway -- who helped put Ed Lee and then London Breed in the mayor's office -- at a recent tech forum, this broken city is on you. The tech industry and its political puppets evicted thousands of people, aggravated the homeless crisis they love to complain about, and resist paying their fair share of taxes -- public money that could be used to build affordable housing and make this city healthy again.
Will tech billionaires like Michael Moritz -- who bought himself a news daily that rails against the homeless (the Standard) and recently penned a column in the New York Times wailing that San Francisco has gone to the dogs (without taking any responsibility for the mess) -- now take a genuinely progressive direction and back the political leaders and activists who can turn around the city? Don't hold your breath. The tech industry would rather whine about SF -- even when the blood is spilled by one of their own.
Top image: San Francisco district attorney Brooke Jenkins (L) speaks as San Francisco police chief William Scott (L) looks on during a press conference at San Francisco Police headquarters on April 13, 2023 in San Francisco, California. San Francisco police arrested 38 year-old tech tech entrepreneur Nima Momeni at his home in Emeryville, California in connection with the stabbing murder of Cash App founder Bob Lee. Momeni was taken into custody without incident. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)