68 SFPD cases dropped due to police misconduct

March 15, 2011 3:29:05 PM PDT
A total of 68 drug and robbery cases in San Francisco have been dropped in light of a probe into allegations of police misconduct, a spokesman for the district attorney's office said today.

Fifty-nine cases had been dropped as of the end of Wednesday, and nine more were dropped late last week, spokesman Seth Steward said.

The dropped cases mark the latest fallout from surveillance video released earlier this month by Public Defender Jeff Adachi that he said shows corruption among some officers.

The four videos released by Adachi's office appear to contradict what officers wrote in their police reports and said in court testimony about drug busts in December and January at residential hotels in the city's South of Market and Mission neighborhoods.

Eight officers have been named in the investigation into the alleged misconduct. All are plainclothes officers from the Police Department's Southern Station and have been put in administrative duties during the probe.

Those officers' involvement in other drug and robbery investigations has prompted the case dismissals.

On Friday, District Attorney George Gascon decided to hand over the criminal investigation into the misconduct to the FBI and the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Adachi had called on Gascon, who was police chief at the time of the incidents, to pass along the investigation to another agency because of a potential conflict of interest.

The trial integrity unit of the district attorney's office is still looking at what other cases may have to be dropped due to the probe, and Steward acknowledged today that more dismissals could come in the near future.

The Police Department is conducting its own internal investigation into the matter, which has prompted the indefinite suspension of plainclothes operations at the Southern Station.

The officers named in the report are Richard Yick, Arshad Razzak, Arthur Madrid, Robert Forneris, Raul Elias, Raymond Kane, Samuel Christ and Gregory Buhagiar.


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