San Francisco Police Department
Overview
The San Francisco Police Department, also known as the SFPD and San Francisco Department Of Police, is the police department of the City and County of San Francisco, California. The department's motto is the same as that of the city and county: Oro en paz, fierro en guerra, archaic
Archaism
In language, an archaism is the use of a form of speech or writing that is no longer current. This can either be done deliberately or as part of a specific jargon or formula...

 Spanish for Gold in peace, iron in war.

The SFPD should not be confused with the San Francisco Sheriff's Department
San Francisco Sheriff's Department
The San Francisco Sheriff's Department is the sheriff's department for the City and County of San Francisco. The department has 850 deputized personnel, and support staff....

, which is another law enforcement agency within San Francisco.
Encyclopedia
The San Francisco Police Department, also known as the SFPD and San Francisco Department Of Police, is the police department of the City and County of San Francisco, California. The department's motto is the same as that of the city and county: Oro en paz, fierro en guerra, archaic
Archaism
In language, an archaism is the use of a form of speech or writing that is no longer current. This can either be done deliberately or as part of a specific jargon or formula...

 Spanish for Gold in peace, iron in war.

The SFPD should not be confused with the San Francisco Sheriff's Department
San Francisco Sheriff's Department
The San Francisco Sheriff's Department is the sheriff's department for the City and County of San Francisco. The department has 850 deputized personnel, and support staff....

, which is another law enforcement agency within San Francisco. The SFPD (along with the San Francisco Fire Department
San Francisco Fire Department
The San Francisco Fire Department provides fire and emergency services to the City and County of San Francisco, California.The San Francisco Fire Department, along with the San Francisco Police Department and San Francisco Sheriff's Department, serves an estimated population of 1.4 million people...

 and the San Francisco Sheriff's Department) serves an estimated population of 1.2 million, including the daytime-commuter population, and the thousands of other tourists and visitors, in the 2nd most densely populated large city in North America. It is the 11th largest police Department in the United States.

History

The SFPD began operations on August 13, 1849, during the Gold Rush
Gold rush
A gold rush is a period of feverish migration of workers to an area that has had a dramatic discovery of gold. Major gold rushes took place in the 19th century in Australia, Brazil, Canada, South Africa, and the United States, while smaller gold rushes took place elsewhere.In the 19th and early...

, under the command of Captain Malachi Fallon. At the time, Chief Fallon had a force of one deputy captain, three sergeants and thirty officers.

In 1851, Albert Bernard de Russailh wrote about the nascent San Francisco police force:

"As for the police, I have only one thing to say. The police force is largely made up of ex-bandits, and naturally the members are interested above all in saving their old friends from punishment. Policemen here are quite as much to be feared as the robbers; if they know you have money, they will be the first to knock you on the head. You pay them well to watch over your house, and they set it on fire. In short, I think that all the people concerned with justice or the police are in league with the criminals. The city is in a hopeless chaos, and many years must pass before order can be established. In a country where so many races are mingled, a severe and inflexible justice is desirable, which would govern with an iron hand."


On October 28, 1853, the Board of Aldermen passed Ordinance No. 466, which provided for the reorganization of the police department. Sections one and two provided as follows:

The People of the City of San Francisco do ordain as follows:

Sec. 1. The Police Department of the City of San Francisco, shall be composed of a day and night police, consisting of 56 men (including a Captain and assistant Captain), each to be recommended by at least ten tax-paying citizens.

Sec. 2. There shall be one Captain and one assistant Captain of Police, who shall be elected in joint convention of the Board of Aldermen and assistant Aldermen. The remainder of the force, viz., 54 men, shall be appointed as follows: By the Mayor, 2; by the City Marshal, 2; by the City Recorder, 2; and by the Aldermen and assistant Aldermen, 3 each.


In July, 1856, the "Consolidation Act" went into effect. This act abolished the office of City Marshal and created in its stead the office of Chief of Police. The first Chief of Police elected in 1856 was James F. Curtis
James F. Curtis
James Freeman Curtis II , 49er, Vigilante leader in San Francisco, its first Chief of Police, officer in the California militia and Volunteers in the American Civil War.- 49er :...

 a former member of the San Francisco Committee of Vigilance.

In 1997, the San Francisco International Airport
San Francisco International Airport
San Francisco International Airport is a major international airport located south of downtown San Francisco, California, United States, near the cities of Millbrae and San Bruno in unincorporated San Mateo County. It is often referred to as SFO...

 Police merged with SFPD, becoming the SFPD Airport Bureau.

The SFPD currently has over 2000 sworn officers.

The SFPD have been known to be some of the toughest on crime cops on the West Coast, but lenient for small offenses, and are known as an "East Coast
East Coast of the United States
The East Coast of the United States, also known as the Eastern Seaboard, refers to the easternmost coastal states in the United States, which touch the Atlantic Ocean and stretch up to Canada. The term includes the U.S...

" Department on the West Coast
West Coast of the United States
West Coast or Pacific Coast are terms for the westernmost coastal states of the United States. The term most often refers to the states of California, Oregon, and Washington. Although not part of the contiguous United States, Alaska and Hawaii do border the Pacific Ocean but can't be included in...

 in regards to customs and history. They also have adapted and are known for their protest and riot control history, dating back to the 1934 West Coast waterfront strike riots, their beatings of persons involved in segregation protests in the 1950s, protests of the HUAC hearings at City Hall, and military style sweeps of the Haight-Ashbury district in the late 1960s. and marches against US Foreign Policy in the financial district. There have been few unjustified shootings and use-of-force cases against the department compared to other large cities.

The SFPD is known for being one of the pioneering forces for modern Law Enforcement
Law enforcement agency
In North American English, a law enforcement agency is a government agency responsible for the enforcement of the laws.Outside North America, such organizations are called police services. In North America, some of these services are called police while others have other names In North American...

, beginning in the early 1900s.

As of early 2009, the SFPD is beginning a sort of resurgence, with a new headquarters being built by 2010 which is to encompass an area twice the size of the current operational headquarters, the Hall of Justice
Hall of Justice
A Hall of Justice is an occasional term for a city's police headquarters, and exists in cities across the United States. In some cases, the facility may also house courts as well as jails...

 and a new outside Police Chief.

Organization

The head of the SFPD is the Chief of Police. The current Chief is Greg Suhr. He was chosen by Mayor Ed Lee to fill the post left by Chief George Gascon, who resigned on January 9, 2011 to accept an appointment as San Francisco District Attorney by Mayor Gavin Newsom. The San Francisco DA's position had become vacant after then-District Attorney Kamala Harris won her bid in November 2009 to become California's Attorney General.

The Chief works with six deputy chiefs directing the four bureaus: Administration, Airport, Field Operations, and Investigations, as well as the Municipal Transportation Authority, and the Public Utilities Commission. With the exception of the bureau of Investigations, three commanders are assigned to each bureau to assist the deputy chiefs.‎

Administration Bureau

The Administration Bureau is responsible for providing support to other bureaus of SFPD, as well as other city agencies. The bureau is split into seven units or divisions:
  • Behavioral Science Unit comprises the Employee Assistance program, the Peer Support Program, the Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT), the Stress Unit, Catastrophic Illness Program, and the Chaplain’s program. Its function is to provide support to members of SFPD who struggle with personal issues.
  • Fiscal Division consists of the Accounting Section, the Grant Unit, the Fleet Unit, and Property Control. Its function is to oversee the entire SFPD budget and to respond to audits from federal or state agencies.
  • Planning Division provides functional support to the Department. It performs functions such as facilities maintenance, equipment repair, written directives, informational system management, and informational technology and telecommunication support.
  • Risk Management consists of the Legal Section, Management Control Section, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Section. Its function is to provide oversight and review of policies, procedure development, and compliance.
  • Staff Services Division is responsible for processing personnel files, performing background checks of employees, human resources, and hiring and promotion.
  • Support Services Division consists of the Taxi Detail, the Permit Unit, and the Report Management Section. Its functions include regulation of commercial vehicles, issuance of permits, and data storage.
  • Training and Education Division is responsible for training new recruits and current officers.

Airport Bureau

The Airport Bureau of the San Francisco Police Department was established on July 1, 1997, as the successor to the San Francisco International Airport Police. The Airport Police department was closed after a local referendum. The Airport Bureau is responsible for the security and safety of San Francisco International Airport
San Francisco International Airport
San Francisco International Airport is a major international airport located south of downtown San Francisco, California, United States, near the cities of Millbrae and San Bruno in unincorporated San Mateo County. It is often referred to as SFO...

. Besides providing basic police services, this bureau also oversees the airport's Transportation Security Administration
Transportation Security Administration
The Transportation Security Administration is an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that exercises authority over the safety and security of the traveling public in the United States....

 (TSA) security plans and plays a critical role in the airport's emergency response capabilities.

Field Operations Bureau

The Field Operations Bureau (FOB) is responsible for the reduction of crime around the city. The bureau is split into several different units:
  • The Patrol Unit is split between two divisions: Metro and Golden Gate, both of which provide patrol around the city. Both divisions have five stations supported by FOB staff members. Besides patrol, this unit also assists the district station event coordinators with large scale city events, and provides security at those events.

  • The Fugitive Recovery Enforcement Team (FRET) is responsible for apprehending fugitives. It works closely with federal and state agencies in tracking down criminals at large.

  • The Homeland Security Unit – which previously operated as a separate bureau, and is now incorporated into the FOB – responds to the need for heightened security in the United States. It works closely with other agencies to enhance the overall security of the city.

  • The Traffic Company is responsible for traffic law enforcement throughout the city. Its function includes the investigation of car accidents and handling of traffic at special events.

  • The Youth Services Unit is a program established to provide youths with an alternative to gang life.

Investigations Bureau

The Investigations Bureau is split into five divisions:
  • The Forensic Services Division consists of Computer Forensics Unit, Criminalistics Laboratory, Crime Scene Investigation, ID/Records Section, Photographic Unit, and Polygraph Unit. Its main function is to recover and process evidence.

  • The Property Crimes Division consists of the following bureaus: Auto Detail, Burglary, Fencing, Lost and Found, Financial Elder Abuse, Fraud, Hit and Run, and Neighborhood Investigation. Its main function is to investigate crimes such as auto theft, burglary, hit and run
    Hit and run (vehicular)
    Hit-and-run is the act of causing a traffic accident , and failing to stop and identify oneself afterwards...

    , DUI
    Driving under the influence
    Driving under the influence is the act of driving a motor vehicle with blood levels of alcohol in excess of a legal limit...

    , fraud, and arson. The division is also responsible for recovering stolen property and investigating animal attacks.

  • The Personal Crimes Division consists of: General Works, Homicide, Sexual Assault, Robbery, and Special Investigation Section. Its main function is to investigate serious crimes such as homicide
    Homicide
    Homicide refers to the act of a human killing another human. Murder, for example, is a type of homicide. It can also describe a person who has committed such an act, though this use is rare in modern English...

    , rape, and robbery, track down illegal firearms, and handle extradition
    Extradition
    Extradition is the official process whereby one nation or state surrenders a suspected or convicted criminal to another nation or state. Between nation states, extradition is regulated by treaties...

     of criminals. The Special Investigation Section is a special division that is responsible for investigating bomb threats, hate crimes, gang violence, and providing security detail to the Mayor.

  • The Juvenile and Family Services Division's main function is to investigate domestic violence
    Domestic violence
    Domestic violence, also known as domestic abuse, spousal abuse, battering, family violence, and intimate partner violence , is broadly defined as a pattern of abusive behaviors by one or both partners in an intimate relationship such as marriage, dating, family, or cohabitation...

    , Internet crimes, and missing persons cases.

  • The main function of the Narcotics and Vice Division is to investigate trafficking of narcotics and other illicit vices around the city.

Crime Prevention Company

The Crime Prevention Company, known as the (TAC) Unit, is the operator in charge of the various specialty units of the SFPD. This includes the SFPD SWAT teams, the SFPD Honda-Bike Unit, Anti-Gang Units, and special security details for celebrities, politicians, and foreign dignitaries. It also includes the on-call Police dog
Police dog
A police dog, often referred to as a "K-9 dog" in some areas , is a dog that is trained specifically to assist police and other law-enforcement personnel in their work...

 K-9 Units. The officers that fall under this unit, or company, have specialized training and roles in addition to being regular Patrol Officers.

Ranking structure

Title Insignia
Chief
Chief of police
A Chief of Police is the title typically given to the top official in the chain of command of a police department, particularly in North America. Alternate titles for this position include Commissioner, Superintendent, and Chief constable...

Assistant Chief
Deputy Chief
Commander
Commander
Commander is a naval rank which is also sometimes used as a military title depending on the individual customs of a given military service. Commander is also used as a rank or title in some organizations outside of the armed forces, particularly in police and law enforcement.-Commander as a naval...

Captain
Police captain
- France :France uses the rank of capitaine for management duties in both uniformed and plain-clothed policing. The rank comes senior to lieutenant and junior to commandant....

Lieutenant
Sergeant
Sergeant
Sergeant is a rank used in some form by most militaries, police forces, and other uniformed organizations around the world. Its origins are the Latin serviens, "one who serves", through the French term Sergent....

Inspector
Inspector
Inspector is both a police rank and an administrative position, both used in a number of contexts. However, it is not an equivalent rank in each police force.- Australia :...

-(Detective
Detective
A detective is an investigator, either a member of a police agency or a private person. The latter may be known as private investigators or "private eyes"...

)
Officer
Police officer
A police officer is a warranted employee of a police force...



The SFPD does not have supplemental rankings, like the LAPD
Los Angeles Police Department
The Los Angeles Police Department is the police department of the city of Los Angeles, California. With just under 10,000 officers and more than 3,000 civilian staff, covering an area of with a population of more than 4.1 million people, it is the third largest local law enforcement agency in...

 (which consist of Police Officer III, Police Officer II, Senior Lead Officer, etc.) which were added later in the 1960s. The department is also among the few departments in the nation to call their detectives "inspector
Inspector
Inspector is both a police rank and an administrative position, both used in a number of contexts. However, it is not an equivalent rank in each police force.- Australia :...

s" rather than the traditional title. Inspectors do not use chevrons to identify their rank—instead they carry gold stars similar to lieutenants and above. Tenured officers will have blue gold hash-marks on the lower left sleeve of their long-sleeved shirts. Each mark represents five years of service.

Patrol Specials

San Francisco Police also has a unique off-shoot known as the San Francisco Patrol Special Police
Patrol special police
San Francisco Patrol Special Police is a neighborhood police force authorized in the City Charter, with officers appointed and regulated by the Police Commission after an initial security review by the San Francisco Police Department...

. These are privately funded, armed security police
Security police
In some countries, including the United States, security police are those persons, employed by or for a governmental agency, who provide police and security services to those agencies' properties....

 who work the beat as paid for by local businesses. They are not part of, or regulated by the Police Department, however, they are regulated by the San Francisco police Board. Formed in 1847, a full two years before the official Police Department by Official City Charter, and are the only community policing force allowed in the City and County of San Francisco. San Francisco is known for these patrol specials, as they are one of the only security police of the kind in the nation.

They are affectionately known as "door-shakers" for it was a common practice for them to walk up and down a beat making sure the doors and windows of local business were locked and closed shut. They wear the six-pointed Star of David
Star of David
The Star of David, known in Hebrew as the Shield of David or Magen David is a generally recognized symbol of Jewish identity and Judaism.Its shape is that of a hexagram, the compound of two equilateral triangles...

 badge, rather than the traditional seven-pointed badge, which symbolizes the seven commandments of Law Enforcement.

Recently the SFPD Patrol Specials have been under fire for abuse of force and activities "amounting to the job of a peace officer but not fully authorized to do such". In January 2009 they were ordered to change their uniforms to look more like security or civilian patrol officers, and less like actual San Francisco Police officers. Because of this, the SFPD recently created a web page
Web page
A web page or webpage is a document or information resource that is suitable for the World Wide Web and can be accessed through a web browser and displayed on a monitor or mobile device. This information is usually in HTML or XHTML format, and may provide navigation to other web pages via hypertext...

 that deals with what exactly the Patrol Specials do. The webpage also makes the prime distinctions between the Patrol Special and Police Officer, as it says:

A Patrol Special Officer’s uniform is not the same as a San Francisco Police Officer’s uniform. The Patrol Special Officers are required to wear light blue shirts with navy blue pants. The pants must have a light blue ¼” stripe along the outer most pant leg seam. Patrol Special Officers are not allowed to wear dark navy blue shirts. This uniform is purchased privately by the Patrol Special Officer and is not paid for by any public funds.

Patrol Special Officers are required to wear a silver-toned 6-point star with the words “San Francisco Patrol Special Police” stamped on the facing. No other style or shaped badge is authorized. All San Francisco Police Officers are issued a 7-point star as their official badge.

San Francisco Police Reserve Officers

The San Francisco Police Reserve Officer Unit is composed of individuals who wish to provide community service and give back to the city they live or work in. These officers understand the need for quality policing and community involvement, but cannot make the full commitment on becoming a full-time police officer.

A San Francisco Police Reserve Officer is a POST (Police Officer Standards and Training)- certified peace officer who volunteers his or her time. A Reserve Officer has the same duties and authority as a full-time paid Police Officer while on-duty. Officers patrol in vehicles, on bikes, on foot, and in some cases on marine craft.
Reserve officers must meet the same stringent and comprehensive POST standards and training as regular full-time police officers. Most San Francisco Police Reserve Officers are Level 1 Reserve Officers, which is the highest level that is recognized by the State of California. The SFPD does accept Level 2 or Level 3 Reserve Officers, but based upon their respective levels which determine how a Reserve Officer is deployed.

Reserve Officers are responsible for serving a minimum of 16 volunteer hours per month to retain peace officers status, although there are Reserve Officers who routinely contribute two to three times that amount.

Reserve Officers are involved in many areas of police work. Although most reserve officers actively participate in patrol, others work for such details as Muni, the Fugitive Recovery Enforcement Team, Vice, juvenile, emergency operations, DUI check-points, transporting prisoners, Command Van duty, and fixed posts at special events like 49er Football games and Sigmund Stern Grove performances.

Reserves are now organized like a company, with a complement of 40 Reserve Officers divided into three squads, each with a designated squad sergeant. For special events like New Year’s Eve, Halloween night, and other city-wide events, Reserves are assigned as a squad.

Before Reserve candidates are considered, they must meet the same eligibility criteria as a Q-2 Police Officer Recruit. Furthermore, each candidate must completed the required training prior to being appointed as a Reserve Police Officer. Once appointed, that officer must attend Continuing Professional Training, which is consistent with the requirements of regular full-time Officers every two years. There is also a 400 hour Field Training Program that Level 1 Reserves Officers must complete with a FTO officer. Reserve officers are held to the same performance standards as a full-time Police Officer and serve at the pleasure of the Chief of Police.

SWAT

San Francisco has been known for their elite SWAT
SWAT
A SWAT team is an elite tactical unit in various national law enforcement departments. They are trained to perform high-risk operations that fall outside of the abilities of regular officers...

 team, composed of volunteer and selected officers from the entire agency. Most training is done in-house, with occasional and required training by FBI instructors, other Federal Agencies and private Military instruction. The SWAT division participates in planned and coordinated raids with agencies such as the FBI, DEA
DEA
DEA is the commonly used acronym for the Drug Enforcement Administration, a United States law enforcement agency.DEA or Dea may also refer to:- Organizations :* DEA , UK development education charity...

, and the ATF
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is a federal law enforcement organization within the United States Department of Justice...

. As of recently (2007) it is mandatory that SWAT team members are together, sometimes during routine patrol, and can be seen among the streets of San Francisco in BDU
Battle Dress Uniform
The Battle Dress Uniform were the fatigues that the armed forces of the United States used as their standard uniform for combat situations from September 1981 to April 2005. Since then, it has been replaced in every branch of the U.S. military. Only the U.S. Navy currently authorizes wear of the...

 and traveling in a marked SUV, to ensure a quick and timely response to calls. They were under political fire in the highly publicized 1998 Western Addition Raid, in which more than 90 SFPD SWAT and Federal Agents raided a Western Addition housing project. The SWAT team also executes high-risk warrants in the City and County of San Francisco. They are also among one of the oldest serving agencies doing city crime suppression (the act of saturating high-crime areas with large amounts of officers and police presence-a more proactive approach) along with LAPD
Los Angeles Police Department
The Los Angeles Police Department is the police department of the city of Los Angeles, California. With just under 10,000 officers and more than 3,000 civilian staff, covering an area of with a population of more than 4.1 million people, it is the third largest local law enforcement agency in...

 SWAT
SWAT
A SWAT team is an elite tactical unit in various national law enforcement departments. They are trained to perform high-risk operations that fall outside of the abilities of regular officers...

 and NYPD Emergency Service Unit
Emergency Service Unit
The Emergency Service Unit is the multi-faceted and multi-talented element within municipal, county, or state authority law enforcement agency’s Special Operations command. ESU’s exist mainly in the regional New York City Area but includes several jurisdictions outside the region. ESU is also...

s.

Housing Authority Police

The San Francisco Housing Authority Police was formed as an off-shoot of the department in 1938 to patrol the various housing projects of the city. In the 1980s they were absorbed back into the main Police Department, along with the Airport Police
Airport police
Airport Police units are a security police agency assigned to perform law enforcement functions at airports. In some cases, they are branches of larger general purposes agencies. Other variations include dedicated agencies, combined police/fire agencies and even military units...

 during the organizational restructuring
Restructuring
Restructuring is the corporate management term for the act of reorganizing the legal, ownership, operational, or other structures of a company for the purpose of making it more profitable, or better organized for its present needs...

 of the department.

C.R.U.S.H.

In the mid-1990s, San Francisco experienced the explosion of drug-related homicides, which escalated to approximately 40 murders. Then-Chief Fred Lau sought the expertise of his veteran homicide Inspectors, Napolean Hendrix (now deceased) and Prentice Sanders (later Chief of Police), to put together a "top notch" task force to solve and suppress the murders and investigate violent illegal narcotics cell groups and other violent crimes. Inspector Bob McMillan, Officer Nash Balinton and his partner Officer Paul Lozada, Officer Mike Bolte, Officer Michael Philpott, and Sergeants John Monroe, Maurice Edwards and Kervin Silas, were personally selected to the unit by the Inspectors.

Motor Division

The SFPD was one of the founding departments in the field of utilizing Police motorcycle
Police motorcycle
A police motorcycle is a motorcycle used by various police forces and departments. They may be custom designed to meet the requirements unique of a particular use. A police motorcycle is often called a "motor" by police officers in the United States...

s, (along with their counterparts across the bay in Berkeley
Berkeley, California
Berkeley is a city on the east shore of the San Francisco Bay in Northern California, United States. Its neighbors to the south are the cities of Oakland and Emeryville. To the north is the city of Albany and the unincorporated community of Kensington...

). The unit was founded in 1909, and has grown ever since. They are officially under the command of the SFPD Traffic Division. They participate in many duties such as traffic-enforcement, patrol, riot control, and special events and escorts. It is the only fully functional department that utilizes the entire traffic fleet for escorts in the nation. No other metropolitan city utilizes all its motor bikes for escorts but SFPD.

The entire 85 man unit is based at the Hall of Justice at 850 Bryant Street. Unlike most cities, they patrol as solo officers (hence the name SOLOS). They can frequently be seen throughout the city. The bulk of the unit is composed of Harley-Davidson
Harley-Davidson
Harley-Davidson , often abbreviated H-D or Harley, is an American motorcycle manufacturer. Founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, during the first decade of the 20th century, it was one of two major American motorcycle manufacturers to survive the Great Depression...

 Road King motorcycles and Kawasaki 1000 motorcycles. And there is a sub-division that is composed of Yamaha
Yamaha
Yamaha may refer to:* Yamaha Corporation, a Japanese company with a wide range of products and services** Yamaha Motor Company, a Japanese motorized vehicle-producing company...

 dirt bikes (which is under the command of the Tactical Unit and not the same as Traffic), for city patrol and patrol in and around the area of Golden Gate Park
Golden Gate Park
Golden Gate Park, located in San Francisco, California, is a large urban park consisting of of public grounds. Configured as a rectangle, it is similar in shape but 20% larger than Central Park in New York, to which it is often compared. It is over three miles long east to west, and about half a...

. Otherwise, every one of the 10 main police stations in the city have 2 motorcycles under their command, used for patrol around their districts exclusively.

Areo Division

The SFPD "Areo" Squadron was at its peak in the mid-1970s, with helicopter and small plane flights rivaling the amount of frequency of the Los Angeles Police Department. After several accidents (one of which a helicopter crashed in Lake Merced, killing Officer Charles Logasa in 1971) and complaints about the "Eye In The Sky" program, the unit was disbanded. The helicopter unit was featured prominently in the first Dirty Harry
Dirty Harry
Dirty Harry is a 1971 American crime thriller produced and directed by Don Siegel, the first in the Dirty Harry series. Clint Eastwood plays the title role, in his first outing as San Francisco Police Department Inspector "Dirty" Harry Callahan....

 film, identifying a sniper on a roof top before committing a murder. The unit was reactivated in the late-1990s, but after another fatal crash (which killed two SFPD officers, Kirk Bradley Brookbush and James Francis Dougherty) the Areo unit was put into an "inactive" status indefinitely. In times where it needs air support, the SFPD contacts the California Highway Patrol
California Highway Patrol
The California Highway Patrol is a law enforcement agency of the U.S. state of California. The CHP has patrol jurisdiction over all California highways and also acts as the state police....

 who has a Napa air base.

Police Academy

The original San Francisco Police Academy was built in 1895 and was located on the West End adjacent to Golden Gate Park
Golden Gate Park
Golden Gate Park, located in San Francisco, California, is a large urban park consisting of of public grounds. Configured as a rectangle, it is similar in shape but 20% larger than Central Park in New York, to which it is often compared. It is over three miles long east to west, and about half a...

. The building, no longer in use, had the facilities to accommodate 25 trainees. In the 1960s, the San Francisco Police Academy Complex was built in the virtual center of the city in between the scenic hill range surrounding Twin Peaks, San Francisco, California
Twin Peaks, San Francisco, California
The Twin Peaks are two hills with an elevation of about near the geographic center of San Francisco, California. Except for Mount Davidson, they are the highest points in the city.-Location and climate:...

 and Glen Canyon Park
Glen Canyon Park
Glen Canyon Park is a city park in San Francisco, California. It occupies about along a deep canyon adjacent to the Glen Park, Diamond Heights, and neighborhoods...

. It is surrounded by a heavily wooded forest area and is near a shopping mall and apartment complex. As of recently (2008), there are three academy classes in session annually, with applicants beginning in January and the Academy taking place for 31 to 32 weeks, year round. The Presidio of San Francisco
Presidio of San Francisco
The Presidio of San Francisco is a park on the northern tip of the San Francisco Peninsula in San Francisco, California, within the Golden Gate National Recreation Area...

 at the Northern tip of the peninsula, (located underneath the Golden Gate Bridge
Golden Gate Bridge
The Golden Gate Bridge is a suspension bridge spanning the Golden Gate, the opening of the San Francisco Bay into the Pacific Ocean. As part of both U.S. Route 101 and California State Route 1, the structure links the city of San Francisco, on the northern tip of the San Francisco Peninsula, to...

) is the location of the "proving grounds," where recruits periodically and toward the end of the academy spend time doing an entire 10-hour shift answering calls and dealing with mock situations in and around the massive former military complex. Pier 94 is also used for vehicle training exercises and mock police car chase
Car chase
A car chase is the vehicular pursuit of a suspect by law enforcement officers. Car chases are often captured on film and broadcast due to the availability of video footage recorded by police cars and police and media helicopters participating in the chase...

s, and Lake Merced
Lake Merced
Lake Merced is a freshwater lake in the southwest corner of San Francisco. It is surrounded by three golf courses , as well as residential areas, Lowell High School, San Francisco State University, Fort Funston and the Pacific Ocean...

 is the location of the Academy's firing range. Through initiative by the new Police Chief and a boom in retirees in the coming years, a projected 700+ officers will be hired within the next 5–10 years, meaning full academy classes in the future.

Hall of Justice

The San Francisco Hall of Justice
Hall of Justice
A Hall of Justice is an occasional term for a city's police headquarters, and exists in cities across the United States. In some cases, the facility may also house courts as well as jails...

 at 850 Bryant Street serves as the head court and all court and county jail facilities for the city and county, as well as "Southern Station" and operational headquarters of the SFPD, Headquarters of the San Francisco Sheriff's Department
San Francisco Sheriff's Department
The San Francisco Sheriff's Department is the sheriff's department for the City and County of San Francisco. The department has 850 deputized personnel, and support staff....

, and as of 2003 the San Francisco Headquarters of the California Highway Patrol
California Highway Patrol
The California Highway Patrol is a law enforcement agency of the U.S. state of California. The CHP has patrol jurisdiction over all California highways and also acts as the state police....

. The motorcycle division is quartered here, as well as the rest of the traffic division (Parking enforcement officers and such) and the garage for the dozens of unused police vehicles (various vans, trucks, and cars that are not used on a daily basis, also housed here is the San Francisco Police Mobile command center).

Uniform

  • The standard uniform
    Uniform
    A uniform is a set of standard clothing worn by members of an organization while participating in that organization's activity. Modern uniforms are worn by armed forces and paramilitary organizations such as police, emergency services, security guards, in some workplaces and schools and by inmates...

     is composed of Dark Blue Shirt and Pants with black braid, Gold buttons which are stamped with the City Seal and "SF POLICE"
  • Horse Mounted Officers have a gold stripe going down the uniform pants
  • Motor Division have the "winged wheel" patch on the right sleeve of any long sleeve garment
  • The Peaked cap
    Peaked cap
    A peaked cap, forage cap, barracks cover, or combination cap is a form of headgear worn by the armed forces of many nations and also by many uniformed civilian organizations such as law enforcement agencies...

     of the officers has an 8-Point design (symbolizing 8 commandments of Law Enforcement) contrary to the "air force smooth cap" design of the LAPD. The hat is adorned with a brass hat piece of the San Francisco city seal.
  • The uniform originally had no patch, as with officers of the LAPD
    Los Angeles Police Department
    The Los Angeles Police Department is the police department of the city of Los Angeles, California. With just under 10,000 officers and more than 3,000 civilian staff, covering an area of with a population of more than 4.1 million people, it is the third largest local law enforcement agency in...

    . It was not until 1969 that the patch, incorporating the design of a phoenix
    Phoenix (mythology)
    The phoenix or phenix is a mythical sacred firebird that can be found in the mythologies of the Arabian, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Chinese, Indian and Phoenicians....

     and city motto was added the uniform.

Stations

The SFPD currently has 10 main police stations throughout the city in addition to a number of police substations.

Metro Division:
  • 1) Central Station: 766 Vallejo St. San Francisco, CA 94133


  • 2) Mission Station: 630 Valencia St. San Francisco, CA 94110

  • 3) Northern Station: 1125 Fillmore St. San Francisco, CA 94115

  • 4) Southern Station, Hall Of Justice: 850 Bryant St San Francisco, CA 94103

  • 5) Tenderloin Station: 301 Eddy St. San Francisco, CA 94102


Golden Gate Division:
  • 6) Bayview Station: 201 Williams Ave. San Francisco, CA 94124

  • 7) Ingleside Station: 1 Sgt. John V. Young Ln. San Francisco, CA 94112-2408

  • 8) Park Station: 1899 Waller Street San Francisco, CA 94117

  • 9) Richmond Station: 461 6th Ave San Francisco, CA 94118

  • 10) Taraval Station: 2345 24th Ave. San Francisco, CA 94116


Sub Station and Special Division
  • 11) San Francisco Police Academy: 350 Amber Dr San Francisco, CA 94131

  • 12) San Francisco International Airport Police: International Terminal, 5th floor

Fallen officers

Since the establishment of the San Francisco Police Department, 101 officers have died in the line of duty.

The cause of deaths are as follows:
Cause of death # of deaths
Aircraft accident
3
Assault
1
Automobile accident
6
Bomb
1
Drowned
1
Electrocuted
1
Fall
1
Gunfire
59
Gunfire (Accidental)
2
Heart attack
3
Motorcycle accident
6
Stabbed
2
Struck by streetcar
3
Struck by vehicle
4
Vehicle pursuit
5
Vehicular assault
2
Weather/Natural disaster
1

Demographics

  • Male: 85%
  • Female: 15%
  • White: 60%
  • Hispanic: 13%
  • Asian: 13%
  • African-American/Black: 10%
  • Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 4%
  • Native American:1%


The diversity of the department has increased significantly since 1972, when only 150 of the department's 2000 officers were of a non-white background.

SFPD chiefs of police

Name Term
Malachi Fallon 1849–1850
Brandt Sequine 1851–?
John W. McKenzie ?–1856
James F. Curtis
James F. Curtis
James Freeman Curtis II , 49er, Vigilante leader in San Francisco, its first Chief of Police, officer in the California militia and Volunteers in the American Civil War.- 49er :...

 
1856–1858
Martin J. Burke 1858–1866
Patrick Crowley 1866–1873
Theodore G. Cockrill 1873–1875
Henry H. Ellis 1875–1877
John Kirkpatrick 1877–1879
Patrick Crowley 1879–1897
Isaiah W. Lees
Isaiah W. Lees
Isaiah W. Lees was a detective with the San Francisco Police Department. He served as Chief of Police from 1897 to 1900 and later served as Police Commissioner. He originally arrived in California during the Gold Rush.-References:...

 
1897–1900
William P. Sullivan 1900–1901
George Wittman
George Wittman
George W. Wittman San Francisco Police officer, chief of police.Wittman is the only San Francisco police chief ever fired outright. During the period before the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, business interests desired the removal of the Chinese from San Francisco's Chinatown because the...

 
1901–1905
Jeremiah F. Dinan 1905–1907
William J. Biggy
William J. Biggy
William J. Biggy was San Francisco Chief of Police 1907 - 08.He was appointed Chief of Police by Mayor Edward Robeson Taylor. Upon elevation to the position of Chief, Biggy declared, as do most new chiefs in San Francisco, that he would "clean up" the department...

 
1907–1908
Jesse B. Cook
Jesse B. Cook
Jesse B. Cook San Francisco Police officer, Chief, Police CommissionerJesse Brown Cook began his career in the San Francisco Police Department as a beat officer, and later served as a sergeant of the “Chinatown Squad.” He served as Chief of Police after the 1906 earthquake, retired, and was later...

 
1908–1910
John B. Martin 1910
John Seymour 1910–1911
David A. White 1911–1920
Daniel J. O'Brien 1920–1928
William J. Quinn
William J. Quinn
William J. Quinn native of San Francisco, California. He attended Lincoln Grammar School, Sacred Heart College and studied law at Saint Ignatius College , graduating in 1925...

 
1929–1940
Name Term
Charles W. Dullea
Charles W. Dullea
Charles W. Dullea was the Chief of Police in the San Francisco Police Department from 1940 to 1947.Dullea attended Franklin Grammar and Lowell High Schools. After service in the Marine Corps, Dullea joined the San Francisco police force in 1914. By 1929, he was Captain of Inspectors under William...

 
1940–1947
Michael Riordan
Michael Riordan
Michael Riordan was an attorney and San Francisco police officer who served as chief until a new Mayor Elmer Robinson administration was inaugurated.-History:...

 
1947
Michael Mitchell 1948–1950
Michael Gaffey
Michael Gaffey
Michael Gaffey was the police chief of San Francisco between 1951 and 1955.Gaffey was born in County Roscommon, Ireland near Ballinasloe in 1893, moved to San Francisco at the age of twenty and joined the police department in 1921...

 
1951–1955
George Healy 1955–1956
Francis J. Ahern 1956–1958
Thomas J. Cahill
Thomas J. Cahill
Thomas J. Cahill was chief of police in San Francisco, California from 1958–70. People called him Tom. He was born June 8, 1910. His family repatriated to County Kilkenny, Ireland when he was a child and Cahill returned to San Francisco in 1930....

 
1958–1970
Alfred J. Nelder 1970–1971
Donald M. Scott 1971–1975
Charles Gain
Charles Gain
Charles Gain is a retired police official, who served first as police chief for Oakland, Calif., then as chief in San Francisco in the 1970s.In 1975, Gain was appointed to run the San Francisco Police Department by Mayor George Moscone and served 1975 to 1980...

 
1975–1980
Corneilius P. Murphy 1980–1986
Frank M. Jordan
Frank Jordan
Francis M. “Frank” Jordan is a U.S. politician, foundation executive and former Chief of Police.Jordan was born in San Francisco in 1935 and graduated from Sacred Heart High School in 1953...

 
1986–1990
Willis Casey 1990–1992
Richard D. Hongisto  1992
Anthony D. Ribera  1992–1996
Fred H. Lau
Fred H. Lau
Fred Lau is a former chief of police for San Francisco. He was the first Asian American to ever hold the position of police chief. He was in charge from 1996-2002. He is currently the TSA Federal Security Director, Oakland International Airport.-External links:* Biography of Fred Lau. Article....

 
1996–2002
Prentice E. Sanders
Prentice E. Sanders
Prentice E. Sanders, also known as Earl Sanders, was Chief of Police of the San Francisco, California, USA Police Department for fourteen months in 2002 and 2003. He was born in Texas and moved to San Francisco's Laurel Heights at the age of fourteen, attended George Washington High School, and...

 
2002–2003
Alex Fagan
Alex Fagan
Alex Emanuel Fagan was the former Chief of the San Francisco Police Department. Fagan was raised in the East Bay community of Richmond, California, and graduated from UC Berkeley in 1973 with a bachelor's degree in criminology. He joined the San Francisco Police Department in 1973. He received...

 
2003–2004
Heather Fong
Heather Fong
Heather Jeanne Fong is the former chief of police for San Francisco, California, United States. Her ancestral roots are in Ho Chung village, Chung Shan County , Guangdong Province, China. She is the first woman to lead the San Francisco Police Department, and the first Asian American woman to...

 
2004–2009
George Gascón
George Gascón
George Gascón is the District Attorney of San Francisco. Mayor Gavin Newsom appointed him to that post on January 9, 2011, to succeed Kamala Harris, who had been elected California Attorney General in November 2010....

 
2009–2011
Jeff Godown 2011
Greg Suhr  2011–present

The SFPD in popular media

The SFPD has been portrayed in films such as The Sniper
The Sniper (1952 film)
The Sniper is a black-and-white film noir, directed by Edward Dmytryk, written by Harry Brown, and based on a story by Edna Anhalt and Edward Anhalt. The film features Adolphe Menjou, Arthur Franz, Gerald Mohr, Marie Windsor, among others....

, Bullitt
Bullitt
Bullitt is a 1968 American police procedural film starring Steve McQueen, Jacqueline Bisset and Robert Vaughn. It was directed by Peter Yates and distributed by Warner Bros. The story was adapted for the screen by Alan Trustman and Harry Kleiner, based on the 1963 novel Mute Witness by Robert L....

, the Dirty Harry film series
Dirty Harry (film series)
Dirty Harry is the name of a series of films and novels starring fictional San Francisco Police Department Homicide Division Inspector "Dirty" Harry Callahan, portrayed by Clint Eastwood...

, 48 Hrs.
48 Hrs.
48 Hrs. is a 1982 American action comedy film directed by Walter Hill, starring Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy as a cop and convict, respectively, who team up to catch a cop-killer. The title refers to the amount of time they have to solve the crime. This was Eddie Murphy's film debut , and Joel...

, and Metro, as well as television series such as The Lineup
The Lineup (TV series)
The Lineup is an American police drama which aired on CBS radio from 1950 to 1953 and on CBS television from 1954 to 1960, possibly in response to NBC's hit Dragnet....

, Ironside
Ironside (TV series)
Ironside is a Universal television series which ran on NBC from September 14, 1967 to January 16, 1975. The show starred Raymond Burr as the wheelchair-using Chief of Detectives, Robert T. Ironside. The character's debut was in a TV-movie on March 28, 1967. The original title of the show in the...

, The Streets of San Francisco
The Streets of San Francisco
The Streets of San Francisco is a 1970s television police drama filmed on location in San Francisco, California, and produced by Quinn Martin Productions, with the first season produced in association with Warner Bros...

, Nash Bridges
Nash Bridges
Nash Bridges is an American television police drama created by Carlton Cuse. The show starred Don Johnson and Cheech Marin as two Inspectors with the San Francisco Police Department's Special Investigations Unit. The show ran for six seasons on CBS from March 29, 1996 to May 4, 2001 with a total of...

, The Division
The Division
The Division is an American Lifetime Television original series about a team of women police officers in the San Francisco Police Department. The series premiered on January 7, 2001 and ended on June 28, 2004 after 88 episodes.-Synopsis:...

, Killer Instinct
Killer Instinct (TV series)
Killer Instinct is an American crime drama television series filmed in Vancouver that originally aired on the Fox Network. The pilot episode aired on September 23, 2005, and the final episode aired on December 2, 2005....

, The Evidence
The Evidence (TV series)
The Evidence is an American police procedural drama that debuted on March 22, 2006 on ABC. The series starred Rob Estes, Orlando Jones, and Martin Landau.-Summary:...

, and Monk
Monk (TV series)
Monk is an American comedy-drama detective mystery television series created by Andy Breckman and starring Tony Shalhoub as the titular character, Adrian Monk. It originally ran from 2002 to 2009 and is primarily a mystery series, although it has dark and comic touches.The series debuted on July...

. The Dirty Harry film series is known for shaping the popular view of the department, with a hard nose stance on crime and often using "cowboy" tactics (shoot first, stakeout
Stakeout
Stakeout is a 1987 film directed by John Badham and starring Richard Dreyfuss, Emilio Estevez, Madeleine Stowe, Aidan Quinn, and Forest Whitaker...

s, and preemptive raids).

In the days of Old-time radio
Old-time radio
Old-Time Radio and the Golden Age of Radio refer to a period of radio programming in the United States lasting from the proliferation of radio broadcasting in the early 1920s until television's replacement of radio as the primary home entertainment medium in the 1950s...

, there were a number of drama series built around the activities of the SFPD. Carlton E. Morse
Carlton E. Morse
Carlton Errol Morse was a Louisiana-born producer/journalist best known for his creation of the radio serial One Man's Family, which debuted in 1932 and ran until 1959 as one of the most popular as well as long-running radio soap operas of the time. He also was responsible for the radio serial I...

 created four different shows based on SFPD files for NBC's
NBC
The National Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network and former radio network headquartered in the GE Building in New York City's Rockefeller Center with additional major offices near Los Angeles and in Chicago...

 Pacific Coast Network, Chinatown Squad, Barbary Coast Nights, Killed in Action, and To the Best of Their Ability. The Lineup also started out as a radio series, but unlike its TV or film
The Lineup (film)
The Lineup is a 1958 American film version of the police procedural series that ran on CBS radio from 1950 through 1953 and on CBS television from 1954 through 1960, directed by Don Siegel...

 incarnations, was not specifically set in San Francisco, but in an unnamed "great American city."

The SFPD has also had a strong presence in novels and short stories
Short story
A short story is a work of fiction that is usually written in prose, often in narrative format. This format tends to be more pointed than longer works of fiction, such as novellas and novels. Short story definitions based on length differ somewhat, even among professional writers, in part because...

. Journalist-turned-pulpster Sidney Herschel Small wrote a series of thirty stories that appeared in Detective Fiction Weekly between 1931 and 1936 featuring Sergeant Jimmy Wentworth, the head of the Chinatown Squad, whose adventures were presumably based, if loosely, on the activities of Jack Manion
Jack Manion
Inspector John J. Manion, , San Francisco Police Department, was a veteran officer assigned by Chief Dan O'Brien in 1921 to head up the notorious 16-member Chinatown Squad which had been established in 1875....

, the real-life commander of SFPD's Chinatown detail. In the early 1960s, Breni James wrote two carefully researched novels about Sergeant Gun Mattson, uniformed patrol supervisor at the Ingleside District Station, The Night of the Kill (1961), which was an Edgar
Edgar Award
The Edgar Allan Poe Awards , named after Edgar Allan Poe, are presented every year by the Mystery Writers of America...

 nominee for Best First Novel, and The Shakeup (1964). Ernest K. Gann's
Ernest K. Gann
Ernest Kellogg Gann was an American aviator, author, filmmaker, sailor, fisherman and conservationist.-Early life:...

 1963 novel, Of Good and Evil, tells the story of one busy day in the professional life of San Francisco's police chief, Colin Hill, a character apparently modeled on SFPD's real-life chief at that time, Thomas J. Cahill
Thomas J. Cahill
Thomas J. Cahill was chief of police in San Francisco, California from 1958–70. People called him Tom. He was born June 8, 1910. His family repatriated to County Kilkenny, Ireland when he was a child and Cahill returned to San Francisco in 1930....

, to whom the book is dedicated. More recently, Collin Wilcox wrote a long series series featuring Lieutenant Frank Hastings
Frank Hastings
Frank Hastings is a fictional detective in the Homicide Detail of the San Francisco Police Department, who is the main character in a police procedural series by Collin Wilcox ....

 of SFPD's Homicide Detail. Laurie R. King won an Edgar for her first novel, A Grave Talent
A Grave Talent
A Grave Talent is the first book in Laurie R. King's Kate Martinelli series. Concerning the search for the murderer of several young girls, it won the 1994 Edgar Award for Best First Novel...

(1993), which introduced Homicide Inspector Kate Martinelli, who has gone on to headline such books as With Child
With Child
This article is about a mystery novel; for information about human pregnancy, see Pregnancy.With Child is the third novel in the Kate Martinelli series by Laurie R. King. In the book, a teenaged girl is kidnapped while she was supposed to be in Kate's care...

(1997), an Edgar nominee, and The Art of Detection
The Art of Detection
The Art of Detection is the fifth book in the Kate Martinelli series by Laurie R. King. It is preceded by Night Work.-Plot summary:Philip Gilbert, the head of a group of Sherlock Holmes enthusiasts, is found dead in a national park's artillery battery...

(2006), winner of the Lambda Award for Best Lesbian Mystery Novel. James Patterson's novels about Homicide Inspector Lindsay Boxer
Lindsay Boxer
Lindsey Boxer is the main character in the novel series Women's Murder Club written by James Patterson. The series is based on fictional characters and police cases in San Francisco....

, introduced in 1st to Die
1st to Die
1st to Die is the first book in the Women's Murder Club series, written by James Patterson. The series is about four friends who pool their skills together to crack San Francisco's toughest murder cases...

(2001), have become best-sellers
Bestseller
A bestseller is a book that is identified as extremely popular by its inclusion on lists of currently top selling titles that are based on publishing industry and book trade figures and published by newspapers, magazines, or bookstore chains. Some lists are broken down into classifications and...

, and were the basis for the short-lived TV series Women's Murder Club
Women's Murder Club
Women's Murder Club is an American police procedural and legal drama, which ran on ABC from October 12, 2007, to May 13, 2008. The series is set in San Francisco, California and is based on the 'Women's Murder Club' series of novels written by James Patterson...

. Former SFPD detective and current Bay Area
San Francisco Bay Area
The San Francisco Bay Area, commonly known as the Bay Area, is a populated region that surrounds the San Francisco and San Pablo estuaries in Northern California. The region encompasses metropolitan areas of San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose, along with smaller urban and rural areas...

 private investigator Jerry Kenneally has written two novels featuring Homicide Inspector Jack Kordic, The Conductor (1996) and The Hunted (1999). After a trilogy of police novels set in other parts of the Bay Area, retired San Jose Police Chief Joseph McNamara wrote one novel, Code 211 Blue (1996), about a narcotics inspector who uncovers corruption within the SFPD. Another former cop, Robin Burcell, who spent twenty years in law enforcement, first as an officer in the Lodi
Lodi, California
Lodi is a city located in , in the northern portion of California's Central Valley. The population was 62,134 at the 2010 census. The California Department of Finance's population estimate as of January 1, 2011 is 62,473....

 Police, then later as a criminal investigator for the Sacramento County District Attorney's Office
District attorney
In many jurisdictions in the United States, a District Attorney is an elected or appointed government official who represents the government in the prosecution of criminal offenses. The district attorney is the highest officeholder in the jurisdiction's legal department and supervises a staff of...

, wrote four novels featuring Homicide Inspector Kate Gillespie, the first of which, Every Move She Makes (1999), won the Barry
Barry Award (for crime novels)
The Barry Award is a crime literary prize awarded annually since 1997 by the editors of Deadly Pleasures, an American quarterly publication for crime fiction readers. From 2007-2009 the award was jointly presented with the publication Mystery News...

 for Best Paperback Original, and the third of which, Deadly Legacy (2003), won the Anthony
Anthony Award
The Anthony Awards are literary awards for mystery writers presented at the Bouchercon World Mystery Convention since 1986. The awards are named for Anthony Boucher , one of the founders of the Mystery Writers of America....

 in the same category.

Some San Francisco-set police novels have explored The City's rich history. With Siberia Comes a Chill (1990), by former Inyo County Deputy Sheriff
Sheriffs in the United States
In the United States, a sheriff is a county official and is typically the top law enforcement officer of a county. Historically, the sheriff was also commander of the militia in that county. Distinctive to law enforcement in the United States, sheriffs are usually elected. The political election of...

 Kirk Mitchell
Kirk Mitchell
Kirk Mitchell is an American author who is known for his time travel, alternate history, historical fiction, and adventure fiction novels. Mitchell has also created several novelizations of movies....

, features SFPD Homicide Inspector John Kost who, in April 1945, while conducting a murder investigation as the United Nations is meeting for the first time in San Francisco, finds himself pitted against an NKVD
NKVD
The People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs was the public and secret police organization of the Soviet Union that directly executed the rule of power of the Soviets, including political repression, during the era of Joseph Stalin....

 assassin. White Rabbit by David Daniels, set during 1967's Summer of Love
Summer of Love
The Summer of Love was a social phenomenon that occurred during the summer of 1967, when as many as 100,000 people converged on the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco, creating a cultural and political rebellion...

, follows Homicide Inspector John Sparrow as he pursues a serial killer
Serial killer
A serial killer, as typically defined, is an individual who has murdered three or more people over a period of more than a month, with down time between the murders, and whose motivation for killing is usually based on psychological gratification...

 stalking the residents of San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury neighborhood.

Controversies

The SFPD has been frequently met with criticism, unavoidable due to problems of accountability and corruption that plagued the department early in its inception. In 1937, an investigation by District Attorney Matthew Brady
Matthew Brady (district attorney)
Matthew Brady was a district attorney in San Francisco from 1919 through 1943.Brady defeated previous district attorney Charles Fickert, who was responsible for the conviction of Tom Mooney and Warren Billings in the Preparedness Day bombing....

 found that more than $1 million per year was being pocketed by the officer class from regular payoffs by prostitution, gambling and other criminal interests. It has also dealt with attacks such as the Preparedness Day Bombing
Preparedness Day bombing
The Preparedness Day Bombing was a bombing in San Francisco, California on July 22, 1916, when the city held a parade in honor of Preparedness Day, in anticipation of the United States' imminent entry into World War I. During the parade a suitcase bomb was detonated, killing ten and wounding...

 in 1916 and the San Francisco Police Department Park Station bombing
San Francisco Police Department Park Station bombing
The San Francisco Police Department Park Station bombing occurred on February 16, 1970, when a pipe bomb filled with shrapnel detonated on the ledge of a window at the San Francisco Police Department's Golden Gate Park station....

 in the 1960s by leftist radicals
Political radicalism
The term political radicalism denotes political principles focused on altering social structures through revolutionary means and changing value systems in fundamental ways...

.
Recent examples of controversy include police shootings, the reaction to Critical Mass
Critical Mass
Critical Mass is a cycling event typically held on the last Friday of every month in over 300 cities around the world. The ride was originally founded in 1992 in San Francisco. The purpose of Critical Mass is not usually formalized beyond the direct action of meeting at a set location and time and...

 bicycle rides and protests in the Financial District against U.S. foreign policy. Surprisingly the rate of complaints against officers and "excessive force" cases are lower relative to other big-city departments, such as the LAPD
Los Angeles Police Department
The Los Angeles Police Department is the police department of the city of Los Angeles, California. With just under 10,000 officers and more than 3,000 civilian staff, covering an area of with a population of more than 4.1 million people, it is the third largest local law enforcement agency in...

, the NYPD, or CPD
CPD
-US police departments:* Chicago Police Department* Cincinnati Police Department* Cleveland Police Department* Columbus Police Department* Certified Project Director as per IAPPM* Town of Carmel Police Department, in New York-Also:...

. Nevertheless, the city retains one of the highest complaint rates; particularly when analyzed on a per-capita basis, factoring in the relatively small population of San Francisco compared to Los Angeles or New York. This could be attributed to several factors, including the dramatic increase of so called "transient population," or those coming to visit the city, (increasing the population to approximately 1.3 million), or the proactive nature of the Office of Citizen Complaints, or OCC. The OCC, created by San Francisco City Charter, has been known to solicit complaints from people contacted by police, and while the initial complaint volume appears high, the actual volume of sustained complaints against officers is very low for a department of its size.

Notable incidents and events include the Golden Dragon massacre
Golden Dragon massacre
The Golden Dragon massacre took place in San Francisco, California, on September 4, 1977, inside the Golden Dragon Restaurant. At 2:40 AM a longstanding feud between two rival Chinese gangs, the Joe Boys and Wah Ching came to head when a botched assassination attempt by the Joe Boys at the Golden...

, a deadly shooting between Chinese gang members in the city's Chinatown
Chinatown
A Chinatown is an ethnic enclave of overseas Chinese people, although it is often generalized to include various Southeast Asian people. Chinatowns exist throughout the world, including East Asia, Southeast Asia, the Americas, Australasia, and Europe. Binondo's Chinatown located in Manila,...

 district, and the 101 California Street shootings
101 California Street shootings
101 California Street Shootings is the name given to a mass shooting that took place July 1, 1993 in San Francisco, California, claiming the lives of nine people including the shooter. The killings sparked a number of legal and legislative actions that were precursors to the Violent Crime Control...

 in 1993.

The crime lab's reputation worsened after an employee stole cocaine.

Trivia

  • The SFPD, under direction of Chief Martin J. Burke, was the first department in the United States to use photography for police work in the early 1860s.
  • President
    President of the United States
    The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

     Franklin Delano Roosevelt, visiting San Francisco in 1938, said: "The force had done the finest policing job I had ever seen outside of the city of New York. Tell the boys they had done a good job."
  • The emblem of the San Francisco Police Department was designed and has been in use since the late 1930s.
  • During the aftermath of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake
    1906 San Francisco earthquake
    The San Francisco earthquake of 1906 was a major earthquake that struck San Francisco, California, and the coast of Northern California at 5:12 a.m. on Wednesday, April 18, 1906. The most widely accepted estimate for the magnitude of the earthquake is a moment magnitude of 7.9; however, other...

    , mayor Eugene E. Schmitz issued a proclamation, declaring "The Federal Troops, the members of the Regular Police Force, and all Special Police Officers have been authorized by me to KILL any and all persons engaged in Looting or the commission of Any Other Crime." In the end, only a few people were killed by this order.
  • Until the 1960s, it was a common practice for SFPD officers to dump large quantities of confiscated weapons into the San Francisco Bay
    San Francisco Bay
    San Francisco Bay is a shallow, productive estuary through which water draining from approximately forty percent of California, flowing in the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers from the Sierra Nevada mountains, enters the Pacific Ocean...

    .
  • The SFPD was one of the first police departments in the United States to hire Chinese-American and African-American full-time officers.
  • The SFPD was one of the first law enforcement agencies in the world to use fingerprinting identification, and to compile a massive database of crimes and criminals, all of which were to be handed over to the Federal Bureau of Investigation
    Federal Bureau of Investigation
    The Federal Bureau of Investigation is an agency of the United States Department of Justice that serves as both a federal criminal investigative body and an internal intelligence agency . The FBI has investigative jurisdiction over violations of more than 200 categories of federal crime...

     during its inception. J. Edgar Hoover
    J. Edgar Hoover
    John Edgar Hoover was the first Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States. Appointed director of the Bureau of Investigation—predecessor to the FBI—in 1924, he was instrumental in founding the FBI in 1935, where he remained director until his death in 1972...

     would later praise the SFPD for their massive contributions, saying once on a visit, "San Francisco is a bright spot on our map. Your Police Department has pushed drive against organized crime to the point where criminal rackets, as other cities know them, haven't a chance here. Other cities have drives against crime, but not much push."

See also



External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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