June 3, 2012

Crime Beat: A Close Call On Fair Oaks Street

From the Fair Oaks Street Group email list, this description of an incident early Saturday morning on 6/2/12:
I thought it was important to let the Fair Oaks Community know what happened to me last night.

Sometime between 12:15-12:45 a cab dropped me off outside my apartment on Fair Oaks Street. My cell phone was stolen this same night so I'm not 100% sure of the time. The cab left me off in the middle of the street and as soon as it drove away I noticed a man hiding behind a tree next door to the entrance of my apartment. All I could see was his head peeping out behind the tree. I decided to wait because I did not want this man to follow me in. As soon as he realized I had seen him, he made a run for me. I screamed as loud as I could down the middle of Fair Oaks Street between 23rd and 24th running towards an oncoming car. The car stopped and four complete young strangers saw how distraught I was and let me inside their car. The man from behind the tree ran to his volvo station wagon and took off within seconds. The police came about 5 minutes later after my next door neighbor heard my scream and came outside to check on me. The police said a similar incident happened on 22nd and Bartlett. I really would like all of the women in the Fair Oaks Community to know what happened. My next door neighbor where the man was hiding has absolutely no lighting and his trees have been marked to be cut down. I think it's time we start to take action and have people install more lighting on the street. I have no idea what this man looks like because it was so dark. All I could see was the outline of his body.
In addition to all the usual advice for how to stay safe, one Fair Oaks resident had this great reminder:
Supervisor Scott Wiener has called a hearing on street lighting with PGE and various City departments in attendance on Monday morning (TOMORROW!) June 4, at 10 AM at City Hall – either Room 263 or in the Board of Supes chambers. Scott invites all Fair Oaks folks to attend, to make our needs known to the authorities, and to press for improvements. The more neighbors who show up, the sooner we’ll get action on our street. Please try to attend – and spread the word, too.
Scott's official announcement:
What: Hearing on streetlight reliability in San Francisco, including problems and delays fixing burned out lights and plans by PG&E and PUC to improve the system.

When: Monday June 4, 2012, at 10 a.m. (Note that the hearing was originally scheduled for two weeks ago but was delayed.)

Where: Board of Supervisors City Operations and Neighborhood Services Committee, City Hall

Details: Supervisor Scott Wiener called for a hearing on streetlight reliability in San Francisco, so that the public can better understand how the system works, how streetlights are maintained and by whom, how requests for maintenance are processed, and why there are frequent delays in getting streetlights fixed. Persistent burned-out streetlights are a significant source of frustration for the public. The PUC, PG&E, and other City departments will be present to address the issue.

Contact: Supervisor Scott Wiener, (415) 554-6968, scott.wiener@sfgov.org
[Photo: sfist]


Anonymous said...

These attacks, attempted attacks and break-ins in the neighborhood are extremely alarming. Our block of 26th St. had three attempted break-ins a couple of weeks ago. Thieves appeared to be going for bicycles visible through garage windows or mail slots in garage doors.

An easy and effective deterrent are motion triggered lights. I've installed these on three houses on our block. I researched various products and landed on "Mr. Beams" - about $20 on Amazon. These are LED lights running on 3 D-cell batteries that should last 6-9 months before replacing. Super easy installation (one screw) and they appear to be well designed and good quality.

- Scott

Anonymous said...

I 100% echo Scott's comments and want to take it further:

1) if you want to help instead of just sitting there or complaining to our city gov't, DO something yourself: install (or push your landlord to allow you to install and take it out of the rent) a motion light or a timer light or a light-sensitive light. I got one from Cliff's (415.431.5365) that goes on when the sun goes down. It's great. It doesn't use much energy either. It was easy. It wasn't expensive. DO it.

2) I applaud Scott Weiner but frankly, this is a problem a neighborhood could do more to impact than city-gov't. ASK your neighbors to install a light (or turn on their existing light at night). Quit being cheap folks, turn on the light. Alos, we have existing streetlights on our street and they don't do nearly enough, so unless the city starts an incentive program for folks to install motion/light-sensitive/timer lights, I don't think the answer is waiting for the city to act.

3) This is a PERFECT opportunity for Tuggy's: put these lights in the front of the store-window with a sign about how you can help your neighbors by installing these. With all the foot traffic right there at the farmer's market, it'd sell.

Sorry for getting so worked up, but it makes me mad when I drive around at night and everyone's porch lights are off (especially ones in already-dark areas).

Anonymous said...

It's good to get worked up. totally agree with you.

But I doubt if Tuggeys will even respond or care about your idea. they are completely out of touch with NV.