Most of the revelers were having a good time, just celebrating peacefully. In fact, about 10,000 of them gathered at the Civic Center to watch the game on a big screen and there were very few problems. But as the night wore on, things changed. The street parties turned bad late in the night.
Troublemakers overturned cars. They stopped traffic on Market Street, even jumping on taxicabs. Any car, for that matter, was fair game. People set off fireworks and barrel bombs. Some people in the rowdy crowd broke the windows of a Muni bus. But what really angered the mayor was the burning of a bus. "Burning a municipal bus that cost the city almost $1 million? We're going to have to compensate for that and find ways to which we pay for it as a city," he said.
Revelers set bonfires in the middle of streets then fueled them by throwing furniture and trash cans. A huge crowd, perhaps 1,000 people or more, celebrated late into the night in the Mission District. There were more bonfires, bigger ones. Police monitored the situation. When command officers felt it was getting out of control, they went in. Revelers told ABC7 News police exhibited a lot of restraint, perhaps too much restraint. "They kind of let it happen. They let everything happen, under control," Lorenzo Kersevan said.
Police made 35 arrests, almost all of them for felonies. They confiscated two guns. "Our arrests go from public drunkenness to barrel bombs and shooting a rifle recklessly out a window," SFPD Chief Greg Suhr said. He admitted the bonfires surprised his command staff. It was something they didn't expect. Firefighters wanted police protection because the crowd at some places was growing too large. The situation became extremely fluid.
The chief said there was no adequate plan to deal with the fires. "If we could have known that fire was going to be an issue to the degree that it was, we would have formulated the plan that we have now going in as to what the fire department felt would be a safe circumstance for them to get in more rapidly," Suhr said.
Other than that, Suhr believed the overall police plan and strategy was a good one. He said there were extra officers deployed all around the city, especially in those areas where there was a potential for violence like the Mission, AT&T Park, and Civic Center. Suhr also said he believes police officers used just enough force to stop the violence.
World Series Parade
The team will be honored with a ticker-tape parade Wednesday morning. San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee announced Sunday night that the city will salute the World Series champions just as they did in 2010 when a downtown parade concluded with a celebration at Civic Center Plaza.
The parade will start at 11 a.m. at the foot of Market Street, then follow Market Street to Civic Center. The mayor's office and the Giants will announce more details in the next couple of days.