SF DA defends his policies as city makes national headlines with highest property crime rate

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Tuesday, March 22, 2022
SF DA defends policies less than 3 months away from recall election
San Francisco district attorney Chesa Boudin addressed a crowd of nearly 200 as his recall election is now less than three months away.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- San Francisco is in the national spotlight again due to crime. An article on the front page of the Wall Street Journal says that of the 25 largest U.S. cities. "San Francisco has the highest property crime rate in four of the most recent years in which data is available."

Monday night though, San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin was on the offensive. He was the feature speaker at a town hall meeting at Manny's in the Mission District of San Francisco.

Boudin addressed a crowd of nearly 200 San Franciscans as his recall election on June 7 is now less than three months away.

"I'm proud of the fact that in my two years in office we've increased our charging rate for sexual assault, we've increased our conviction rate for homicide cases, and we filed more than 10,000 new criminal cases," said Boudin.

VIDEO: Bay Area DA's meet with crime survivors to find solutions, better ways to support victims

This is the first time a group of survivors of violent crimes from across the Bay Area met in person with multiple district attorneys.

The crowd inside at Manny's was there to ask Boudin questions, but a pro-recall crowd of two dozen people were outside, making it known they aren't happy with the district attorney. In fact we even saw drama between someone appearing to be a Boudin supporter, and another person in favor of the recall.

"This DA, his policies have failed!" said a recall supporter.

"How do you know if his policies have failed? If he hasn't had a chance to do that and the police have been sabotaging him!" said a Boudin supporter.

"I haven't really had a chance to govern properly. I'm not making excuses, I'm just stating facts here but I took office in January 2020, less than two months later I was told by the Department of Public Health that I and my staff couldn't go into our office," said Boudin.

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San Francisco Standard reporter Han Li joined ABC7's Getting Answers to discuss how Asian American voters may influence the DA recall election.

But over the course of the last two year's San Franciscans have seen vehicle theft property crimes continue to plague the city and thefts continue to hurt businesses.

Boudin though refusing to answer our questions about that as he left Monday's town hall.

"I'm really late for another event. Happy to talk about it, really late for another event," said the district attorney as he walked away from our camera.

Homelessness was a main focus at the town hall along with diversion programs instead of incarceration in certain cases. Boudin making reference to a successful program in Eugene, Oregon where social workers respond to calls instead of police.

"I think if we're serious about reducing violence, reducing the police clearance rate, about building public safety, then we've got to invest in programs like that one," said Boudin.