San Francisco's car break in epidemic targets union leader at city hall

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It's no exaggeration to say car break ins in San Francisco have reached epidemic proportions, so the mayor said his upcoming budget should reflect resources to help fix the crisis.

It's no exaggeration to say car break ins in San Francisco have reached epidemic proportions.

The latest caught ABC7 News' attention because of who it involved and where it occurred. Tom O'Connor is the president of the San Francisco Firefighters Local 798 and he knows no one is immune these days, but is frustrated that his car window was smashed right outside city hall in broad daylight as he was inside working on contact negotiations for San Francisco's firefighters on Monday. "It's amazing and I'm thinking my alarm must have been going off when they were crawling through my car and nobody said anything or did anything, I guess," he said.

O'Connor took to Twitter to vent using sarcasm saying, "#city's fine, #no problem here." He included the mayor, but not as a dig he says and instead as a call to action. Mayor Mark Farrell responded saying, "quite frankly I share the frustration of that tweet."

RELATED: Bill being introduced to help deter vehicle break-ins in San Francisco

Farrell says his upcoming budget should reflect resources to help fix the crisis. There were an astounding 30,000 car break ins in San Francisco last year, many in tourist areas like along Lombard street.

In Japantown, Olympic skater Marissa Castelli had her costumes stolen during a smash and grab.

Residents in the Inner Sunset neighborhood have taken action by making their own warning signs.
The Auto Glass company on Bryant Street where O'Connor brought his car for repairs has seen a tremendous uptick in business. "Every five cars that come through my shop, at least three or four are break-ins," Auto Glass company owner Ru Das said.

RELATED: San Francisco spends $9,000 on signs to prevent car theft

Farrell says he is working with San Francisco Police Department Chief William Scott. "What I asked the police chief to do is have a deep discussion and analysis within the police department. What are the right staffing levels going forward, so we don't have this crisis on our hands anymore. This cannot be the status quo on our streets."

O'Connor says this is the third time he's been hit.

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