Latino Politician Gives SFPD Chief A Verbal Lashing For Killing of Homeless Mexican Man
David Campos vs Chief Suhr #JusticeForLuisGongora #Execution #LicenseToKill
Posted by Peter Menchini on Wednesday, April 13, 2016
“You are telling people this is what we think happened. How can you say that when this investigation is still ongoing?”
On Wednesday, David Campos, who sits on San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors and represents parts of the Mission and Bernal Heights — two historically Latino neighborhoods with shifting demographics caused by gentrification — went hard after SFPD Chief Greg Suhr at a town hall over last week’s police killing of Luis Gongora, a homeless Mexican man.
Campos’s biggest gripes were the timing of the town hall — noon on a Wednesday — and how the police have spoken about the case.
“You have an ongoing investigation supposedly to find out what happened in this incident, and yet you’ve had a number of press conferences where you are already prejudging what happened,” Campos reprimanded Chief Suhr. “I ask the police commission and the mayor to direct the police department to stop trying the case in the public.”
Campos isn’t wrong. As we previously reported, the police narrative has been that Gongora, who some claim didn’t speak English, charged at police with a knife after being hit with cautionary bean bags. But not everyone who witnessed the event is corroborating the police’s account. According to the Guardian, one of the few non-Bay Area outlets that has covered the Gongora killing, six witnesses present at the shooting challenge the police’s version of the events.
Remember, this is a police department that killed Mario Woods, Alex Nieto, Amilcar Perez-Lopez, and now Luis Gongora — all under questionable circumstances — because the cops felt their lives were threatened. It’s a police department that went through a racist text scandal, and then followed it up with a second racist text scandal poking fun of the first one.
It’s a law enforcement agency whose constituents are asking the federal government to investigate for civil rights violations.
The seeming lack of transparency that follows the killing of minorities by the SFPD is nothing short of troubling. After all, San Francisco is often thought of as one of the most liberal cities in the United States . If it can happen there, it can happen in Pasco, Wash., where the local county coroner will finally be allowed to conduct a public inquest into the death of Antonio Zambrano-Montes a year after it happened. It can also happen in Chicago, where a Latino man with a history of mental illness mysteriously died at the hospital while under police custody.
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