Friday, October 05, 2018

George Gascon: A preliminary retrospective

Photo: Luke Thomas

District Attorney George Gascon won't run for reelection next year.

Gascon is remembered on District 5 Diary for his significant gaffes.

He got off to a rocky start politically in San Francisco when, as Police Chief in SF for less than six months, he criticized Critical Mass. That pleased me and a lot of other people in the city, but it went against the political grain here in Progressive Land, since the Bicycle Plan was still being litigated, and City Hall was in full pander mode to the anti-car bike community.

A few months later he made some dumb comments about Arab countries and terrorism, for which he apparently tried to overcompensate by saying dumb things during the Muni jihad ad controversy.

The worst thing he did was lead the mob against Ross Mirkarimi during that shameful episode in San Francisco history. But it showed his praiseworthy personal qualities when he and his wife later reached out to Mirkarimi and his wife.

On the other hand, he showed thin skin when he blocked former Chronicle columnist Debra Saunders from his Twitter feed.

He was suspiciously slow to bring charges against a cyclist who hit and killed a pedestrian on the Embarcadero (See also Matier & Ross on the subject).

More importantly, he's been reluctant to bring charges against city cops who kill city residents in suspicious circumstances. Even if it would have been hard to convict the killers, bringing charges in court would have sent a useful message to city cops on the homicidal use of force.

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At 11:18 PM, Anonymous Chris Bucchere said...

Gascón tried to make up for his perceived weakness in the first fatal bicycle/pedestrian accident (the one you mentioned) by throwing the book at me, the cyclist held responsible for the next accident, despite video evidence that all but exonerated me from any legal wrongdoing. The DA and SFPD leaked false information to the press about my case, making impossible for me to get a fair shake.

At 11:35 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Okay, like to hear more about how your case was handled by Gascon.

At 9:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alas, SF may never get a truly great DA...or supervisors for that matter. I hope against hope that someday we elect moderate, level headed people that can think beyond the end of their noses. Objective and fair in their views but more importantly are rationale and understand that there are more working people that just want a safe city without worrying about getting mugged, or car window smashed or stepping in a pile of crap.


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