Gascon defends “sit-lie” ordinance 

Police Chief George Gascon fired back at a local news weekly editorial that was critical of the chief and his proposal to create a “sit-lie” ordinance. The proposed law, which would allow officers to cite people who are sitting on the sidewalk, gained momentum this month as police cracked down on aggressive panhandling and loitering on Haight Street.

In his response to the San Francisco Bay Guardian, posted on the police department’s website, Gascon said the SFPD cannot afford to put foot patrols in every San Francisco neighborhood that needs them, and a “sit-lie” law would give police a tool to deal with “increasing thuggery.”

“I cannot in good faith as Chief stand by idly and assert that the only answer to this problem is an around-the-clock beat officer presence that is, quite frankly, not possible given the competing demands for officers,” Gascon wrote.

The ordinance has yet to be introduced at the Board of Supervisors.


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