Sunday, January 03, 2016

My SFPD Social Media Complaints Prod Chief's Reply

Since late November, I've complained to several panels and persons regarding sloppy and inconsistent social media engagement by San Francisco's police force personnel. Previous posts in recent weeks on SFPD, accountability and transparency concerns, and social media are here, here, here, here, and here.

At the December 9 police commission hearing, president Suzy Loftus calendared social media and mug shot regulations for discussion in January. 

The agenda for the January 6 commission meeting shows that Chief Greg Suhr will present details about the department social media policy. Many folks, I'm sure, are keen to hear what he has to say.

A few days back, Briseida Banuelos of the SFPD legal division, replied to my public records request stating they need more time to gather the lists of all official Twitter users, every social media platform they use, and the names and duties of every staffer in the public information office. Let's hope SFPD officers locate all the info I've asked for and that it's presented on January 6.

In addition to requesting public records and bringing my issues directly to the police commission, I've also asked the Sunshine Ordinance Task Force to weigh in on whether the SFPD should process records requests via Twitter. The matter is on the agenda of a task force committee on January 11.

Then there's my complaint to the Office of Citizen Complaints, alleging questionable behavior by the SFPD's public information office regarding release of only certain mugshots online and withholding for two-weeks the booking photo of Chris Kohrs, the Hot Cop of the Castro arrested for hit-and-run felony charges.

To bring even a modicum of better policing to San Francisco, not to mention accountability over cops killing civilians and use-of-force rules, and better engagement by the police department, the commission and the OCC, it's going to require a whole lot of folks to demand change.

While working toward that change, I wish to again request that Mayor Ed Lee stop hiding from the communities upset with SFPD officers over the officer-involved killing of Mario Woods in the Bayview in December. Mayor Lee needs to hold town halls and hear from constituents directly.

Better policing starts with the mayor being accountable to citizens.

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