Castro Crime & Safety: Pepper Spray Robbers, New Jane Warner Lighting, More

Castro Crime & Safety: Pepper Spray Robbers, New Jane Warner Lighting, More
New light at Jane Warner Plaza. (Photo: Alisa Scerrato/Hoodline)
By Brian Ray - Published on February 08, 2016.

It's been a little longer than usual since our our last crime and safety roundup, but there's a positive reason: the number of reported incidents in the Castro appears to have decreased measurably in recent weeks.

With that said, we've still got some news to share, including info on new security measures at Jane Warner Plaza, pepper spray-wielding robbers, a seven-man gun robbery in Dolores Park, and more. All reports come via the SFPD, unless otherwise noted.

Note: Hoodline did not receive SFPD reports for January 29th-31st. We reached out to the SFPD to attain that information, but have yet to hear back.

Security Measures At Jane Warner Plaza

You may have spotted construction crews working on a street pole in Jane Warner Plaza late last month. According to Andrea Aiello, executive director of the Castro/Upper Market Community Benefit District, the new and improved lighting comes courtesy of the Public Utilities Commission. "The Castro Merchants and the CBD had met with them about lighting, and that was one of the places we asked for a new light."

Robbery Leads To Gun Threat

On January 20th at 11:50pm, a man, 24, was approached from behind by two men in their 30s near 18th and Church. The men grabbed his computer case; when the victim attempted to confront them, one suspect claimed to have a gun. Threatening to shoot the victim, he demanded the rest of his belongings, fleeing with his partner in an unknown direction with the victim's laptop, computer bag, and cell phone. No arrests were made.

Robbery With Gun

A 38-year-old man was robbed on January 25th at 2am, near Market and Castro. Three suspects approached him on the street, showed him a handgun in one of their waistbands, and demanded money and belongings. They stole his backpack, laptop, smart watch, cell phone, headphones, and cash before fleeing on foot. No arrests were made.

Pepper Spray-Wielding Thieves

A woman, 53, was assaulted with pepper spray robbed by two suspects on January 27th at 3:50pm near the Twin Peaks View Point. The victim was walking down the hill from the View Point when a man and woman, both in their 20s, robbed her. One sprayed pepper spray in her face and the other snatched her purse, containing credit/debit cards and currency. Both suspects then ran to a waiting four-door black sedan and drove away. No arrests were made.

Overnight Hot Prowl

On January 28th, a 36-year-old man awoke to a noise in his Sanchez Street home at 4:28am. He walked toward the kitchen and saw a male suspect of unknown age standing in the room. The victim shouted at the suspect, and the suspect fled through the back door. No items were reported as being stolen, and no arrest has been made.

Robbery Leads To Struggle

A woman, 39, was approached from behind by a man, age 20-30, on February 1st at 7:10pm near 20th and Collingwood. The man told her that he had a gun and attempted to grab her purse. She struggled with him, but he took the purse and fled on foot. The purse contained her wallet, bank cards, keys, and cash. No injury was reported and no arrest has been made.

Hot Prowl Car Theft

A 45-year-old woman awoke at 6am on February 5th in her home near 17th and Church to find the back door open. She then saw that an unknown suspect had stolen her purse, electronics, and car. No arrest has been made, but her vehicle was recovered a few blocks away.

7-Man Gun Robbery In Dolores Park

On February 6th at 7:00pm, a man, 54, was robbed by seven males, 18-20, in Dolores Park. The suspects put a gun to the victim's face, pistol-whipped him, and stole his bag before fleeing on foot. The man was taken to the hospital for bruising and cuts to his head and face. No arrests have been made.

Did we miss any recent crime around the neighborhood? Let us know in the comments below. If you've got a crime or neighborhood safety tip to share, send us a tip here, or via Facebook or Twitter.