April 3, 2009

Crime Report: Scavengers

In addition to detailing recent armed robberies, burglaries and drug arrests in the Mission in his weekly newsletter, Mission Station Captain Stephen Tacchini addressed the problem of recycling scavengers:
Over the past few weeks I have received complaints from residents in the district regarding noise, littering, and suspicious persons with pickup trucks, carts, and gargage bags related to the removal of recyclable goods from containers. Upon checking with representatives of Sunset Scavenger, I have come to learn this is a significant and costly problem city wide. Who suffers from the loss of this significant material? You--the neighborhood residents.

The dumping of the recycle bins by unauthorized persons is evident by the debris, broken glass, liquid, and papers they leave on the street, creating a public safety hazard and exacerbated litter problem. This results in the Department of Public Works having to come out to clean up the mess, at a cost borne by taxpayers.

Officers from Mission Station will be working towards reducing the types of complaints related to this problem and assistance from the public will be very helpful. In the spirit of community policing I request citizens who observe persons removing recyclable goods from containers on the street, by other than Department of Public Works or Sunset Scavenger personnel to report their observations to SFRecycling.com. This will provide information as to where, when and by whom, using what type of vehicle this activity is being conducted. Your assistance will help us to identify the persons responsible and we can proceed from there to abate the associated problems neighborhoods are experiencing.

It is important to recycle and be as energy and environmentally efficient as possible. It is also important to maintain clean and safe streets while working towards reducing the amount of garbage going into land fills. Reducing the incidence of the theft of recyclable goods will result in fewer noise complaints, cleaner / safer streets, and potentially lower service charges.
Timely, because since a San Francisco Judge "ordered a dozen of the city's most prolific recycling scavengers to stop looting bottles, cans and cardboard from curbside bins" last month they seem to be out in stronger force.

[SFRecycling: Report Form]
[NVSF: Recycling Theft = $469,000]
[SFGate: Judge orders scavengers to stop raiding trash]


Anonymous said...

How does one get a copy of Captain Tacchini's weekly newsletter?

Noe Valley, SF said...

To get the Mission newsletter (north part of Noe covered), send a note to SFPDMissionStation@ci.sf.ca.us.

To get the Ingleside newsletter (south part of Noe covered), send a note to SFPDInglesideStation@ci.sf.ca.us.

Interesting reading, but most police activity in them is outside Noe. We've posted what's relevant - search "crime" or "tacchini".

murphstahoe said...

EZ. 23rd St between Douglass and Hoffman, 7 PM on Tuesday, a beat up white pickup truck is there. I can set my watch by it.

One day I got home and dragged out first my compost bin. Then my trash bin. The scavenger started to hover, and I contemplated taking it a few yards out then putting it back in the garage, but fearing that he'd break my windows, I refrained from taunting him and just shut my garage door and took the bin out in the AM.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if identity theft is the grand prize for the "recyclers."

Anonymous said...

Everyone should take care to shred any paper that could be used to steal your identity. Alas, this causes another problem. Our scavengers on Church Street dig through the bag of shredded paper and make a big mess that blows down the street. Our scavengers, who are regulars by the way, make a big mess, and lots of noise when they bang through all our bottles and cans. I wish the carts had built in locks that could only be opened by Sunset Scavenger.

try_and_do_no_harm said...

anonymous that is actually quite a good idea...to put it further, wouldnt it be awesome if people were willing to give up their "indevidual" cans of recycling and there was like one bin at the end of a block which DID have a lock on it that only the neighbors had the key/combination to. i would almost wonder if that would be more economical then putting a lock on every bin.
disclaimer: i just thought of this and there are probably many problems with it, but i figured it couldn't hurt to be a starting point for other ideas

Anonymous said...

Who wants to have the communal recycling bin beside of or in front of their house? Not in My Front Yard!
That's probably the main problem with the idea.

try_and_do_no_harm said...

is that because it wont look pretty or fit in with the feel of the neighborhood?

put a prize out for the artist that can come up with the best design for one and id bet we'd get some pretty awesome ideas. people who live at the corners of streets already have garbage cans, mailboxes, newspaper bins in front, whats one more?

Anonymous said...

I live at a corner and don't have garbage cans or newspaper racks. Not every block does, only the business districts. Pay attention.
And I don't want the smell and 24 hour noise of a block's communal bin next to my bedroom windows! Do you?

lizatblackrose said...

I don't mind the little old Chinese lady carrying 2 garbage bags on a pole across her shoulders who comes to take my cans and bottles each week...it could well be her only source of income.