Entertainment

SF DA Chesa Boudin has been charging people for theft in LESS than 50% of all cases, data shows


San Francisco’s woke District Attorney Chesa Boudin has been charging people with theft in less than 50% of all cases throughout his tenure, new data reveals. 

Businesses throughout the city have reduced their hours or closed entirely because of the uptick in property theft, and  Boudin has been lambasted by local critics for ‘destroying the fabric of our city.’ 

A Safeway grocery store became the most recent business to suffer from the rampant shoplifting, citing it as the reason for scaling back its round-the-clock service to just 6am to 9pm.

Boudin ran for his position on the promise that he would take a new approach to crime by not prosecuting lower-level offenses. He has stuck to that promise, to the chagrin of many locals, by only charging people of theft in 46% of all cases since taking office. 

In comparison, his predecessor George Gascon has made such charges in 62% of all cases in 2018 and 2019, according to city data analyzed by the San Francisco Chronicle.

Boudin now faces a likely recall just two years into his term as his critics launched a petition last March that has collected more than 83,000 signatures, far above the 51,000 needed to launch an election. 

San Francisco’s woke District Attorney Chesa Boudin has been charging people for theft in less than 50% of all cases throughout his tenure, new data reveals

Overall, Boudin has charged people with crimes in 48% of all reported cases, while Gascon has a charging rate of 54%

Overall, Boudin has charged people with crimes in 48% of all reported cases, while Gascon has a charging rate of 54% 

Boudin has also convicted far less people of both crimes than Gascon, only convicting thieves in 79% of thefts and 62% of petty thefts

Boudin has also convicted far less people of both crimes than Gascon, only convicting thieves in 79% of thefts and 62% of petty thefts

Boudin faces a likely recall as a petition launched last March has collected more than 83,000 signatures, far above the 51,000 needed to launch an election

Boudin faces a likely recall as a petition launched last March has collected more than 83,000 signatures, far above the 51,000 needed to launch an election

Some who have joined the recall came from his own administration as 50 lawyers from his office quit or were fired since he took the reins in January 2020, representing roughly one-third of the department’s prosecutors.

‘He has vowed from the beginning to not prosecute quality of life crimes. Quality of life is … the basis of a society, of our city. If you’re not going to hold people responsible for that you’re basically destroying the fabric of our city,’ Richie Greenberg, a former Republican mayoral candidate and spokesperson for the Committee Supporting the Recall of DA Chesa Boudin, told the San Francisco Chronicle.

Boudin has an even lower rate in petty crime and has only made charges in 35% of all cases, compared to Gascon’s 58%.

Boudin has also convicted far less people of both crimes than Gascon, only convicting thieves in 79% of thefts and 62% of petty thefts. Gascon has an 82% conviction rate for theft and a 77% conviction rate for petty theft.

Overall, Boudin has charged people with crimes in 48% of all reported cases, while Gascon has a charging rate of 54%.

Boudin ran for his position on the promise that he would take a new approach to crime by not prosecuting lower-level offenses. He has stuck to that promise, to the chagrin of many locals. A video posted to Instagram in July captures the moment at least 10 people stole loads of designer bags from Neiman Marcus in San Francisco and fled undeterred

Boudin ran for his position on the promise that he would take a new approach to crime by not prosecuting lower-level offenses. He has stuck to that promise, to the chagrin of many locals. A video posted to Instagram in July captures the moment at least 10 people stole loads of designer bags from Neiman Marcus in San Francisco and fled undeterred

Witnesses told KTVU that the store was about to close when the suspects came in and smashed display cases before nabbing the goods and leaving

Witnesses told KTVU that the store was about to close when the suspects came in and smashed display cases before nabbing the goods and leaving

Boudin has had two upticks in charging rates: rape and narcotics. However, such cases have had less success in court as Boudin has only convicted 70% of those he charged with rape and has only convicted 62% of all perpetrators in narcotics arrests

Boudin has had two upticks in charging rates: rape and narcotics. However, such cases have had less success in court as Boudin has only convicted 70% of those he charged with rape and has only convicted 62% of all perpetrators in narcotics arrests

Boudin has had two upticks in charging rates: rape and narcotics. Another promise he made was to take more alleged rape and narcotics perpetrators to court, even if he loses the case.

He has charged 63% of people with rape in reported cases, while Gascon has only charged 53%, and Boudin has charged 60% of people with narcotics-related arrests as compared to Gascon’s 47%. 

However, such cases have had less success in court as Boudin has only convicted 70% of those he charged with rape as opposed to Gascon’s 81%. Meanwhile, Boudin has only convicted 62% of all perpetrators in narcotics arrests as opposed to Gascon’s 75%.

Boudin previously argued that the pandemic is to blame for the drop in his charging rate, citing the reduced operation of San Francisco’s court system caused by COVID-19 restrictions.

‘We had clear instructions from courts to delay and defer anything we could delay and defer, [and] from the medical director to drastically reduce the (jail) population,’ he said. ‘In the context of those really difficult decisions, we did make intentional decisions to delay or defer charging low-level nonviolent cases.’

He also pointed to a law he enacted this year that allows judges to seek alternatives to jail or prison time for first-time offenders charged with most misdemeanors, which sees some entering community service or drug treatment programs.

A 24-hour Safeway store in the Castro area of San Francisco (pictured) has cut it's hours to now open from 6am to 9pm after it was targeted by 'off the charts' shoplifting

A 24-hour Safeway store in the Castro area of San Francisco (pictured) has cut it’s hours to now open from 6am to 9pm after it was targeted by ‘off the charts’ shoplifting

Walgreens insists that San Francisco's rampant crime is to blame, revealing it spends 46 times as much on security at its city stores, which face five times as many shoplifting incidents compared with those elsewhere in the country

Walgreens insists that San Francisco’s rampant crime is to blame, revealing it spends 46 times as much on security at its city stores, which face five times as many shoplifting incidents compared with those elsewhere in the country

Though a growing number of locals and public figures say Boudin has only exacerbated the city’s long-running crime issues. Shoplifting has been rampant in the Democrat-run state since 2014 – following the passage of Proposition 47, a ballot referendum known as the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act – that downgraded the theft of property worth less than $950 in value from a felony to a misdemeanor.

‘Chesa Boudin is protecting criminals and suspects over crime victims,’ Tony Montoya said in a statement to the Chronicle.

Montoya leads San Francisco Police Officers’ Association, which has said that Boudin refuses to charge cases even with sufficient evidence and pointed to an example in which he initially dropped charges against a man who allegedly attempted to assault police officers with a glass bottle before he was shot by police.

‘He refuses to adequately prosecute criminals and fails to take drug dealing on our neighborhood streets seriously. He doesn’t hold serial offenders accountable and has released them from custody without consequences,’ writes the San Franciscans for Public Safety Supporting the Recall of Chesa Boudin, one of the largest groups supporting the recall, on its website. 

The impact of Boudin’s alleged relaxed approach to prosecuting has spelled trouble for businesses through the city.

When Safeway announced its reduced hours, its San Fransisco Supervisor Rafael Mandelman told CBS SF that ‘a lot of retailers [have] been experiencing increasing property crime and theft from their stores. I think the last six months from what they say has been off the charts in terms of how bad it’s been. It’s sad, upsetting and frustrating.’

Walgreens has already closed 17 of its 70 San Francisco stores and announced last month that it was closing another five because of constant shoplifting by thieves who waltz past security guards and sell the items outside the drugstore chain’s doors.

Walgreens is shuttering five of its stores in San Francisco because of financial losses due to constant shoplifting. One of the stores, pictured above, was subject of a viral video showing a man filling a garbage bag full of goods as security guards watched and let him go

Walgreens is shuttering five of its stores in San Francisco because of financial losses due to constant shoplifting. One of the stores, pictured above, was subject of a viral video showing a man filling a garbage bag full of goods as security guards watched and let him go

He then rode his bike through the store with the stolen goods while the security guard and bystanders looked on

He then rode his bike through the store with the stolen goods while the security guard and bystanders looked on 

Thefts in the chain’s 53 remaining stores are five times the average for their stores elsewhere in the country, according to company officials.

A Walgreens official revealed in May that the pharmacy store spends 46 times as much on security at stores in the city than elsewhere in the country.

Viral videos taken throughout the summer have shown shoplifters brazenly sauntering out of stores with armfuls of stolen goods as witnesses watch in shock.

One video that received over six million views was filmed in June at a Walgreens on 300 Gough Street, which is now closed, that showed a thief heaping armfuls of Walgreens products into a trash bag.

He then rode his bike through the store with the stolen goods while the security guard and bystanders looked on.

The suspect, Jean Lugo-Romero, 40, was arrested shortly after and remains in jail. He had previously robbed the same store on May 29, 30, 31 and June 1 – in addition to CVS stores throughout the city – but the chains declined to prosecute.

In July, Boudin defended the shoplifter and said, ‘When I watch that video, I think about five questions that people are not asking that I think they should. Is he drug addicted, mentally ill, desperate? Is he part of a major retail fencing operation? What’s driving this behavior and is it in any way representative, because it was presented as something symptomatic?’

Brooke Jenkins told KNTV DA Chesa Boudin isn't charging criminals

Dan DuBain also said Boudin disregards the laws he doesn't agree with

Brooke Jenkins and Dan DuBain are two of the attorneys who have resigned from the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office in recent months over DA Chesa Boudin’s policies

Boudin was slammed by an Instagram user who posted another viral video of an incident in July when at least ten people stole armfuls of designer goods from luxury department store Neiman Marcus before fleeing without anyone trying to stop them.

‘Everyone in the city is tired of this so please sign the recall petition to oust Chesa Boudin now! Crime is legal basically and allowed and tolerated due to policies put in place and supported by all our supervisors and mayor and DA,’ Instagram user sfstreets415, whose bio reads, ‘Asian photographer and crime reporter,’ wrote.

About two weeks ago, a pair of prosecutors quit their jobs in the San Francisco District Attorney’s office and touted their support for the effort to recall him.

Brooke Jenkins and Dan DuBain told KNTV they stepped down from their posts in San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin’s office due to his lack of commitment to prosecuting crimes, and the danger they say his policies are unleashing on the crime-ridden city’s streets.

They both accused Boudin of making San Francisco more dangerous by regularly handing down more lenient sentences than are prescribed by law, releasing criminals early and in some cases not filing charges at all.

‘Chesa has a radical approach that involves not charging crime in the first place and simply releasing individuals with no rehabilitation and putting them in positions where they are simply more likely to re-offend,’ Jenkins said, who had been a prosecutor for seven years, most recently in the homicide department.

‘Being an African American and Latino woman, I would wholeheartedly agree that the criminal justice system needs a lot of work, but when you are a district attorney, your job is to have balance.’

DuBain added that he believes Boudin ‘disregards the laws that he doesn’t like, and he disregards the court decisions that he doesn’t like to impose his own version of what he believes is just – and that’s not the job of the district attorney.

‘The office was headed in such the wrong direction that the best thing I could do was to join the effort to recall Chesa Boudin as district attorney,’ said DuBain, a former district attorney in Solano County.

‘I take no pleasure in saying this,’ he said. ‘I didn’t want to be in this position. I consider Chesa a friend.’



Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button