SFPD chief urges civility at playoff game

January 19, 2012 12:05:55 AM PST
Following reports of San Francisco 49ers fans being crude and threatening at last weekend's playoff game at Candlestick Park, police Chief Greg Suhr is urging civility when the New York Giants come to town for Sunday's NFC Championship game.

"The only upset that I'd like to bring a Giants fan is to send them home with at least one point less on the scoreboard than the 49ers," Suhr said.

The chief said he hopes 49ers fans are better behaved than at the game against the New Orleans Saints last Saturday, when about 20 people were arrested and numerous others were ejected from the stadium.

"I would hope that our fans would be as classy as the organization is itself," Suhr said.

If not, Suhr said people should not hesitate to call or send a text message to report unruly fans. Calls can be made to (415) 656-4949 or texts can be sent to 69050 with the keyword BADFAN, and will be kept confidential.

"That has to happen," he said. "In the control center, we field texts and calls all day long and act on them ... to make sure nobody has an unpleasant experience."

"For what these tickets cost, it would serve everybody to enjoy what's going on and be respectful of everyone else, lest you don't get to see the end of the game," he said.

Fans kicked out of the Saints game on Saturday missed what the chief said "might've been the best five minutes of football in my 53 years as a 49er fan," as the 49ers won with under 10 seconds left in the game.

Suhr said the city does not expect to need help from outside agencies on game day this Sunday because he has asked all officers to not take a discretionary day that day, and has about 2,000 officers potentially available in the department.

The department has also been assigning additional officers to Candlestick Park during 49ers games in the past year since what Suhr called "a Raiders game that was unlike any other" in August.

That preseason game between the two Bay Area NFL teams was marred by a shooting that injured two men near Candlestick Park and a beating inside a stadium bathroom that seriously injured a man.

If the 49ers were to win and advance to the Super Bowl, Suhr said police also have plans on hand to handle impromptu celebrations in the streets after having dealt with the aftermath of the Giants' World Series title in 2010, as well as celebrations after the 49ers' previous five Super Bowl wins, most recently in 1995.

"We'll dust off the old plans, look at what's changed in the city, and deploy accordingly," he said.


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