SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- San Francisco police have identified the Asian man attacked while collecting cans in the city's Bayview neighborhood. After the viral video, a second video emerged in which security guards allegedly stand by and do nothing to help the man.
"It was a horrific image that we saw in that video, let's make no mistake about it," said San Francisco Police Chief William Scott
Chief William Scott cleared up accusations that his officers witnessed the attack.
"There were no San Francisco officers or any other law enforcement in that video," said Chief Scott.
In an email to ABC7 News, Daniel Francom, the president and CEO of that security company, Critical Intervention Patrol, wrote: "Our Investigation's Unit is currently investigating this matter. While this investigation is underway, it would be premature and unfair to make any statements at this time. We assure you and the community that once our investigation is completed, we will give further details with transparency regarding this incident."
In response to the attack, San Francisco Mayor London Breed says on Thursday, the city will host a Community Unity and Healing rally at 2 p.m. on Osceola Lane, the same street where the attacked happened.
Mayor Breed says the community event is an attempt to bring together the Asian-American and African-American communities to break down barriers around stereotypes and mistrust.
"I want to be clear: We don't want to try and bait any kind of race war," says Mayor Breed. "We live in the same community, we go to the same grocery stores, our kids go to the same schools. And it's important that we bridge that gap."
However, some long-time activists in the Asian-American community, like Dr. Connie Wun, the executive director of AAPI Women Lead, and Eddy Zheng, the founder and president of New Breath Foundation, are raising other concerns.
They issued a joint statement to ABC7 News, saying, "While social media outlets may want to make this a hate crime, Asian community leaders and members who have been historically working on Black and Asian relations oppose the impulse to criminalize communities. Instead, we understand the event as one that is rooted in issues related to poverty, limited resources, cultural conflicts, and systemic rage."
Zheng says that the two security guards should also be accountable for, "not only failing to help the Chinese man, but for harassing, neglecting, and enabling in some of the humiliation and violence that happened that day."
Kevine Boggess works with the nonprofit Coleman Advocates for Children and Youth, which is focused on bettering San Francisco's public schools. He says the Community Unity and Healing event is necessary. But his concern is making sure that high-level discussion about change actually reach the neighborhoods where tension are high.
"Restorative justice, transformative justice really enables the community to heal itself," says Boggess, but adds, "We actually have to see the city commit dollars to supporting efforts and initiatives like this to make sure all communities in San Francisco are connected and have relationships to each other."
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