Bay Area/ San Francisco/ Politics & Govt
Published on March 22, 2017
Hot Off The Tipline: Complaint Forces 'No Ban, No Wall' Sign Removal, New Ramen Truck, MoreRuben Flores (pictured with his daughter Maya) was forced to remove the protest sign on his home. | Photo: Saul Sugarman/Hoodline

Welcome back to the tipline! Here's what we've been hearing from our readers around the city throughout the last week.

Have any burning questions you need answered? Send us a tip on Twitter @Hoodline, via our email, [email protected], or text us at (415) 200-3233, and we'll see what we can find out for you.

We begin in the Inner Sunset, where tipster Steven S. told us that neighbor Ruben Flores has painted over the "No Ban, No Wall" sign that he installed outside his home last month. Flores, a Mexican-born San Francisco resident of nine years, said he created the sign as a show of solidarity with a Muslim friend. 

We reached out to Flores, and here's what he had to say:

"It was necessary to cover up the sign because somebody complained to the city. We got a notice from the city saying that we needed to cover it 15 days, or they will do it for us and charge us for doing it.

I was researching, and it looks like we have the right to have any sign on our wall, but we need a permit from the city ... My wife and I were talking about it, and we decided not to fight, because it is ridiculous. In what country do you need a permission to protest against the dehumanization of our country?

Instead, we agreed on doing it again the next time we have the opportunity. It was and will keep being about a conscious act to say something against the terrorist that we have as a President."

Also in the Sunset, tipster Patty C. told us that Marrow Gallery (548 Irving St.) is now open for business. Previously home to DIY store Colorful Designs, the space is now a "contemporary art gallery that has sprung from independent curatorial projects and a love of popular culture, aiming to contribute to San Francisco's gallery scene," according to its Facebook page.

Though it's been softly open since earlier this month, it's planning an April 8th grand opening.

Marrow Gallery. | Photo: Marrow Gallery/Facebook

We also got three updates on crime in the Sunset.

Tipster James told us about an armed mugging that took place on March 20th, at Kirkham Street and 28th Avenue. According to a Nextdoor post, the victim and their father were approached by two men in hooded sweatshirts around 8:30pm. One of the suspects held a gun to the man's head until he gave up his briefcase and wallet. The poster's father was unharmed, and police are investigating. 

Meanwhile, on March 15th, tipster Danny saw a SWAT team enter a house at 1783 42nd Avenue, at about 9:50am.

Finally, tipster Lily let us know about an attempted phone snatching that took place around 5:55pm on Sunday, March 20th:

My friend and I were walking along the jogger's path right next to the Great Highway (at Judah) when a white SUV with a cracked windshield suddenly stopped on the road. A 5'8" Caucasian male with short, dark brown hair, dressed in a black T-shirt, black shorts, with a beanie and no shoes, got out of his car and proceeded to accuse my friend of taking unauthorized pictures of the man's young daughter on Ocean Beach.

My friend attempted to show the man that there were no pictures whatsoever of the man's daughter on his phone, which is when the man snatched my friend's phone and proceeded to get back into his car. I immediately followed and grabbed the man's steering wheel, to prevent the man from driving off with my friend's phone, and called 911.

A blonde female (the man's wife?) was in the front passenger seat, and a young girl was in the backseat. The man's wife handed us back the phone as soon as they heard me reporting their license plate number and physical description to the 911 operator.

The 911 operator stayed on the line with me until I was able to confirm that they had finally driven away, and that we had my friend's phone back. We did not end up filing a police report, since we were able to get the phone back. This is seriously one of the craziest things I've ever experienced.

We reached out to the SFPD to get additional information on all three of these incidents, but we did not hear back before press time. We will update this story if and when we get a response.

Moving east to the Castro, tipster Jamison W. sent in information about a collision between a driver and a cyclist at 17th and Church streets on March 16th. The cyclist, a woman, was concussed and sitting upright in an ambulance, but Jamison said he didn't see police officers holding any drivers on the scene. We're also still waiting to hear from the SFPD about this incident.

In the Mission, American eatery My Corner Cafe (1500 S. Van Ness Ave.) which is now becoming Rincon Nayarit, a seafood restaurant. Herman Fernandez, the manager of the soon-to-be eatery, told us that the restaurant will serve beer and wine, and is looking to open at the beginning of next month.

Inside My Corner Cafe, soon to become Rincon Nayarit. | Photo: Stephanie T./Yelp

Tipster Ryan S. let us know that neighborhood synagogue Sha'ar Zahav (290 Dolores St.) has launched a new program focused on the city's refugee and immigrant population.

Synagogue president Michael Chertok told us the congregation has signed onto the HIAS Welcome Campaign to support refugees, and has partnered with JFCS East Bay to host refugees in members' homes and give them gift cards from Safeway and Target. It also held a program last Sunday called Standing Up to Hate, which taught members what to do when they witness racism.

Congregation members at a protest. | Photo: Sha'ar Zahav/Facebook

Our avid local business tipster, Albertino M., sent in several pieces of information about restaurant openings and closings around the city.

In the Tenderloin, he told us that Wapioca, a truck that used to specialize in boba drinks, has now transformed itself into a ramen truck, Kurotaka Ramen. It can be found at the truck park at 30 Larkin St., adjacent to Wells Fargo.

Photo: Albertino M./Hoodline

Over in the Financial District, Al told us that Torshi Mexiterranean, a Mexican-Mediterranean fusion restaurant, will be replacing the now-closed Bistro Burger (343 Sansome St.) in mid- to late April. 

A worker on site couldn't confirm any details, and there's currently nothing in the planning documents to give us any clues on who the next owners will be. Do you know? Send us a tip!

Meanwhile, at Pier 39, the Hard Rock Cafe is going through some light remodeling, adding a new private dining room with a doorway leading to the patio. 

Photo: Albertino M./Hoodline

Also in Fisherman's Wharf, there's also some mystery construction work going on at 79 Jefferson St., formerly home to Johnny Rockets, Three Twins Ice Cream and Cornology, is getting an uplift. Construction crews were hard at work, but city documents don't reveal what's moving in. If you know, drop us a line. 

Photo: Albertino M./Hoodline

Finally, Latin Grill (993 North Point St.), known for its pan-Latin offerings, is no longer in business. The workers on-site told tipster Al they didn't know the name of the new business coming in, but that the menu will still be centered around Latin cuisine.

Photo: Albertino M./Hoodline

Also in Russian Hill, tipsters Aileen A. and Andrea A. let us know about a man who was attacked while trying to aid his neighbor. According to a post on Nextdoor, the man, Keith, saw his female neighbor being hassled by a man trying to enter her building.

He asked the suspect to leave, but when he went outside to check that he had gone, the man blindsided him with a pipe, breaking his nose in two places and knocking out several of his teeth. He was taken to the hospital, where he received more than 40 stitches in his head.

To help pay for his medical bills, one of Keith's neighbors started a GoFundMe page, which is only $250 shy of reaching its goal of $3,000. (Update, 3/23: The page appears to have been taken down.)

Finally, Divisadero is one laundromat short, as tipster Conor let us know that Clean and Bright Commercial Laundry (1498 Fulton St.) has been closed as of March 16th. The windows were covered, with no note on the door.

Photo: Stephen Jackson/Hoodline

Our Divisadero reporter, Stephen Jackson, tried to locate the owners, but hit a dead end. If you see any action going on inside or know what's to come, send us a tip. 

Got a tip to share? Email us at [email protected], tweet us @hoodline, or text us at (415) 200-3233.