San Francisco police union calls on chief to resign after raid on reporter’s home


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By Tim Stelloh

San Francisco’s police union called on the city’s police chief to resign on Saturday over his handling of a widely criticized raid on a local reporter’s home earlier this month.

In a letter to members, union president Tony Montoya called on Chief Bill Scott to step down one day after Scott apologized for the May 10 raid on the home of freelance reporter Bryan Carmody.

According to NBC Bay Area, Scott said he was concerned about how department investigators dealt with Carmody’s status a journalist, adding: “This has raised important questions about our handling of this case and whether the California shield law was violated,” Scott said, referring to a state law that protects journalists.

San Francisco Police Chief William Scott answers questions during a news conference, May 21, 2019, in San Francisco.Eric Risberg / AP file

The department was admonished by California Gov. Gavin Newsom, the Washington Post Editorial Board, press freedom groups and others, though police officials initially defended it, saying the move represented “a step in the process of investigating a potential case of obstruction of justice along with the illegal distribution of confidential police material.”

The raid occurred after a confidential source leaked to Carmody a police report with details about the death of San Francisco’s public defender, Jeff Adachi. The city’s medical examiner found that trace amounts of cocaine and alcohol found in Adachi’s system contributed to his death.

Carmody sold a story about the report to some local news outlets. The story — which included photos of the apartment where Adachi was found unresponsive — was condemned by Adachi’s family and local officials, and police officials promised to hold the leaker accountable.

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