This story comes to us courtesy of SF Weekly.
Police Chief Greg Suhr made a visit to his old stomping ground in the Bayview last night to try to do what he supposedly did best when he was the captain of that district: Diffuse the hostility.
But Suhr didn't exactly get the warm welcome he once had over there. Instead, he found it somewhat difficult to talk to the crowd of 200 people who packed the Opera House to hear what the chief had to say about Saturday's shooting where officers killed 19-year-old Kenneth Harding.
The chief didn't get very far; As the Chron reports "Within 30 minutes, it feel apart." Suhr was interrupted and booed. At one point the chief stepped off the stage, presumably to take a breather, before returning to take the crowd on again.
Naturally, people are upset over the shooting. They claim police didn't give Harding medical attention after shooting him -- an they want to know why. Bystanders released video of the incident, which shows Harding rolling on the ground, bleeding. He died later that day.
The forum was held to give Bayview residents a chance to talk directly to the chief, but some of the questions they had didn't and probably aren't going to get answered, like the names of the officers involved in the shooting.
"Everybody is upset. Everybody wants to vent," Suhr said during the forum.
Police have said that Harding, a Seattle parolee, fired at them as he ran toward Mendell Plaza Saturday afternoon after he tried to dodge paying his Muni fare. Officers started shooting back; 10 shots were fired in six seconds. On Tuesday, Suhr released new information that says they found gunshot residue on Harding's right hand, which suggests that he fired at police first.
On Tuesday night, police arrested 43 people during a violent protest in reaction to the weekend shooting. Suhr was hopeful to smooth things over with his town hall on Wednesday night.
"They shouted me down -- that just means I've got to come back again," Suhr told reporters.
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