The crackdown on Tenderloin and SoMa drug dealing and drug use is having an impact, at least according to some numbers released by Mayor London Breed on Friday — though the effectiveness of the strategy to throw users in jail for public intoxication or possession remains to be proven.

San Francisco city leaders are in a race to get the streets of downtown "cleaned up," as it were, before a major international trade conference happening here in November that President Biden will be attending. And the multi-agency crackdown that Mayor London Breed announced three months ago — which included the controversial move to focus on arresting users as well as dealers — has been bearing fruit, according to Breed.

Just yesterday, the mayor was out on one of SF's most "problematic" alleys, as she put it, overseeing an encampment-clearing operation on Willow Street that was one of dozens that have occurred on that same stretch in the last three years. Today she took to X again posting a thread about the "increased efforts to shut down open-air drug markets in the Tenderloin and South of Market," which many critics contend will never actually shut down — though they may get slowed down and may temporarily move elsewhere.

Breed says that, since May 30, increased coordination between the SFPD, the Sheriff's Department, the DA's office, the CHP, and the CA National Guard has yielded hundreds of arrests, and the seizure of nearly 160 kilos of narcotics.

Those seizures include 56 kilos of fentanyl — 38 kilos by the SFPD and 18 more seized by CHP officers — and 103 kilos of other narcotics.

In total, police and sheriff's deputies have arrested "more than 300 dealers," Breed says, including 123 wanted fugitives. And, she notes, these numbers do not include efforts by the DEA and their Operation Overdrive, which will likely send the arrest number higher.

There were a record number of felony narcotics cases filed in 2018 by this time of year, and Breed notes that the DA's office busting that record — with 656 felony narcotics cases that were presented, of which 566 were filed, an 86% filing rate. That's compared to 574 cases presented in 2018 and 476 cases filed.

Also, some 450 individuals have been arrested for public drug use or intoxication, Breed said.

Breed is no longer giving numbers on how many arrested users are accepting officers of treatment or services — early in this crackdown that number was reportedly zero.

"Individuals detained under these laws are supported by Jail Health Services while in custody and are offered access to voluntary services upon release.

At her monthly appearance at the Board of Supervisors in June, Breed squared off with Sup. Dean Preston in what was perhaps some political theater over this issue.

"I’m going to continue to make sure that we are providing treatment, providing compassionate care but at the end of the day, when we need to make arrests because someone is breaking the law and needs to be held accountable and can potentially be forced into treatment services, I’m going to do so," Breed said at the time.

She reiterated that today in a tweet, saying, "We will continue to offer help to people in crisis, but we must hold people accountable who are hurting our communities."

In late June, District Attorney Brooke Jenkins admitted that many of these users whom the city is looking to compel into treatment are not showing up for their court dates, in addition to turning down initial offers of services, so there's not a lot of compelling or anything going on.

"Enforcement as a mechanism to get people into treatment is new for us and will take time to catch on, but we are committed to doing our part to help address the crisis we are seeing on our streets," Jenkins said.

SFPD Chief Bill Scott also gave a statement Friday, saying, "Anyone who seeks to profit from selling drugs in our city will be held accountable. We are also taking bold steps to get people who are addicted to fentanyl the help that they need. The people who live, work and visit San Francisco deserve to be safe as they enjoy this beautiful city."

Related: DA Jenkins’s Drug Treatment Effort Not Really Working, Because No One’s Showing Up For Court

Photo via SFPD