Fallout after viral clip of SF art gallery owner hosing down homeless person, police investigating

ByJR Stone KGO logo
Thursday, January 12, 2023
Art gallery vandalized after owner seen spraying homeless person
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As police investigate a video that shows a man hosing down a homeless person, his art gallery was vandalized and some are saying race played a role in the viral incident.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- There's fallout from the video showing an art gallery owner hosing down an unhoused person on a San Francisco street. An investigation has been launched and that's not all, the video has gone viral.

UPDATE: SF gallery owner filmed spraying unhoused person with hose arrested, charged with misdemeanor

This video shows art gallery owner Collier Gwin in San Francisco's North Beach spraying down a homeless individual.

RELATED: Art gallery owner who hosed down homeless person in SF finds it 'hard to apologize'

Overnight the art gallery of the man with the hose was vandalized.

Now the head of the San Francisco branch of the NAACP is weighing in, saying that race can't be ignored as Gwin is white and the unhoused person, who identifies as a man, is Black.

"No I do not think if it were a white person that that person would have been treated that way," said Dr. Anthony Brown.

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Dr. Brown also says what happened is unacceptable and the city needs to come together tackle the homelessness issue.

The incident was discussed at a San Francisco Police Commission meeting Wednesday night. No arrests have been made but police confirm that the incident is under investigation and will then be presented to the District Attorney.

"The police department is not going to arrest the gentleman for that?" said a police commissioner.

"Not without a warrant," said Police Chief Bill Scott.

"Is the police department seeking a warrant to arrest?" said the commissioner.

"We'll present that for evaluation and we'll see what happens with the district attorney," said Scott.

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Jacqui Berlinn of Mothers Against Drug Deaths has a son living on the streets of San Francisco and says they even struggled when it came to trying to get her son help.

"People aren't getting things done, they aren't communicating well with each other. The police need to communicate with the non-profits and the non-profits need to communicate with the supervisors and that is not what is happening right now so it's not a good situation at all," said Berlinn.

Dr. Brown says he's not looking for an arrest but wants this to be a teachable moment for the man with the hose and the city.

"That took me back to the days in Birmingham, Alabama Bull Connor hose down civil rights activists and we ought to be able to in a civilized society deal with things in a legal peaceful way," said Brown.

"That video absolutely shows the frustration of the citizens of San Francisco but it also shows the vulnerability of these people who are living on the streets, to be hosed down when it's so incredibly freezing cold outside, it's inhumane," said Berlinn.

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