ACLU & EFF Sues San Francisco Over Video Surveillance

By Isabella Cheng, Published May 05, 2021, 01:57pm EDT

San Francisco admits it asked and received a link for remote, real-time access but denies it ever clicked the link. However, an SFPD email suggests otherwise. Is San Francisco telling the truth or not?

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However, the city ordinance allows using video surveillance under "exigent" circumstances. Would San Francisco, in the midst of rising crime, qualify for that?

In this report, IPVM examines the complaint, SFPD's response, and contradiction between the SFPD's position and email evidence.

ACLU *** *** **** **** ** *** *********

** ******* ****, * individuals ******* **-**** **************** *** **** *** county ** *** *********. The ********** *** ***** represented ** ********* **** the **** *** ************* ******** **********(***).

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SFPD ********* ******** **** ********* *********** ***** ************ ** ****** ****

*** ********* ****** *** SFPD ******** ***** ************* ****** **** ****** to ***** ************ ********* without ***** ******** **** the ***** ** ***********. Specifically, *** **** ********* had ************ ****** ** a ******* ******* ** 400+ ******* ** *** Union ****** ******** *********** District (*****) ****** *** protests ******* ****** ********* in **** ***/***** **** 2020:

**** *** ** ******* June *, ****, ** thousands ** ****** **** to *** ******* ** San ********* ** ******** their ***** ********* ****** and *********** ** *****-*** protests ******* ****** ********, the *** ********* ****** Department (“****”)acquired, ********, *** **** * ******* ******* ** **** **** *** ************ ******* ** *** ** ********** ** **** ****. In doing so, the SFPD violated *** ****’* *********** ** ************ ********** ********* (“the Ordinance”).

**** ****** *** ******** in* **** ** ***** profile.

SFPD ****** ********* ** *********, ****** "** **********" ********

***** **** ******, ** its****** ** *** *********, **** ** ******** a "******, ****-**** ****" to *** ***** ************ system, ** ****** "** monitoring ********". *********, **** says ** *** *** violate *** *********:

********* ****** **** ********* a ******, ****-**** **** without ********** *** ****** network *********** ***********, *********, or *** ***** *** Ordinance.

*** **** ***** ** Police, ******* *****, ******* reiterated **** ****** **** ******** *** ***** ** Supervisors **** ***** ****** to *** ******* *** provided ** ****, "** monitoring ********":

******** ******** **** (“***”) requested ****** ** ***’* network ** ******** ******* live **** ** *** event ********** ** *******, vandalism *** ******* *********. On *** ****, *** ******** * remote **** ***** ******* SFPD ******* ** ****** live ****, ** ******. As *******, ********* *** rioting *** *** ******** in *** ***** ******* by ***,SFPD *** *** ******* ***’* ******* ** ******** *******.[******** *****]

****** ********** **** ***** of "** **********"

*******, ****** **** **** officers ********** *** ****'* claim, ****** *** ******* were "********* ******* ** giving ** [****] *********** awareness," ***** ** ** not ******* ***** **** sense ** **** *** not **** *** ****.

**** ******* ****** *** first ******** ******** ****** ** *****'* cameras ** ******, *** 31, **** "*** *********** ********* *** enhanced ********." ****, *** SFPD ******* ******* ****** asked *** ******** ****** on *******, **** *, 2020 "******* *** *******." The**** *** ***********:

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** *********, **** **, 2020, ******* ****** ******* again ** "****** ** and *** ***** ***," stating *** ******* "************* ******* ** ****** us *********** ********* *** ensuring ****** ******":

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***** *** **** ****** live ********** ** *** cameras, *** **** **** "thank ***" ***** ** USBID **** ** **** officer *********** *** ****'* position. *** *****, ***** explicitly ****** **** *** cameras **** "********* *******," seems ** ** ** admission **** *** **** did *** **** ******* the **** *** **** it *** **********.

"Exigent" ************* *** ********** ** **** ********

***** *** **** ********* allows *** *** ** video ************ ******* ***** approval ** "******* *************," SFPD **** *** ********* "exigent" ************* ** *** answer ** *** *********. The**************** "*******" ************* **:

** ********* *********imminent ****** ** ***** or serious ******** ****** to any person that requires the immediate use of Surveillance Technology or the information it provides. [emphasis added]

*******, *** ***** ** police's****** **** ******** *** ***** ** Supervisors *** ********** ***** that *** **** ******** there ** ** ******* circumstances, ********* ****** ** multiple ****** ********* ** a ******** ******:

******* ************:

***** ****** ********* ******** protests ** *** ** and **** *** ******* of *** ** ******** in ** ******* ******** to ******* *** ****** of *** ******* *** numerous ********* ***** ******* protesters *** ***** ********** in *****. ************* ********** occurring ** *** ** resulted ** ** ******* and ******* ** ******* weapons *** **********. ** May **, *** **** Department ********** ****** *** activated, ********* ****** *** was ********* *** ******** by *** ********** ****** of ********* ******** *** a ******** ****** *** enacted ** ***** ****** Breed.

*****, *** *** ** the ****** ***** "*******" circumstances *** *** ** argument ********** ******** ** the ****'* ****** ** the **********' *********.

******, *** ********** ******* there **** ** "*******" circumstances ** *** ****, as ***** ********* ******:

****,no ******* ************* ******* within the meaning of the Ordinance that permitted SFPD to acquire and use the USBID’s camera network, absent prior approval from the Board of Supervisors. There was no ********* ********* ******** ****** ** ***** ** ******* ******** ****** ** * ****** that required SFPD’s immediate use of the USBID’s camera network. [emphasis added]

** ** ***** **** the ****'* *** *********'* understandings ** "*******" ************* are *********. ************* ***** "exigent" ************* ***** ** a ******** ******** *** the **** ** ******* its *** ** *** system, *******, ** *** not * *** ******** in *** ******** ** the *********.

*****, ** ** ******* what ***** ******** ********** would ***** **"*******" *************** * *****.

Crime ***** ******* ** *** *********

***** *** **** **** a ***** ******* ** San *********, *** ***** violent ****** **** ********* in *** **** ****,********** *** ***** ******* thefts********* ************* (****** **%). Although ****** **** ** largely ****** ********, ********* have********* **** *************** *** ******** ** shelter-in-place ****** **** ******. This **** ******* *** SFPD, ****, ****** ** the ******** ** *** surveillance ************ *** ** used **** *********** *** ethnically ** ***** ** increasing ***** ** *** city.

Case ******* ******* ***** ** ******** ********* **********

*******, **** ** *** plaintiffs *** *** ****, there ** ****** ******* in *** ********* ** the ****'* ****** *** relief **** ********** ** tangible ************* *** ****. The ********* **** ***** ******* ** "enforcement"**** ********* ****** ********** will ** *********. ** violations *** ***, **** "any ****** ******** ******* may ********* *********** *** injunctive ******, *********** ******, or **** ** ******* to ****** *** *********, in *** ***** ** competent ************ ** ******* this ******* ***," ***** is **** *** ******* lawsuit ** *******.

** *** ****'* ****** of ******, *** ********** ask *** *** ***** to:

  • ***** *declaratory ******** ******* **** *** **** ******** *** ********* because the SFPD, without prior Board approval, acquired, borrowed, and used the USBID’s camera network.
  • ***** **order ********* *** ****, its agents, employees, successors, and all others acting in concert with it, to ****** **** *** **** **** ***, ******* ***** ***** ********, *******, ******, ** *** *** ******* ****** *******.
  • ***** ** ***** ********* the **** ** *** Plaintiffs’ *********’ **** *** costs ***** *** ********* Administrative **** § ***.*(*), Code ** ***** ********* § ****.*, *** *** other ********** ********.

** *** **** *** access *** ****** ****, the ****** *** ******* been ****. ***** ***** are *** ******** ***** to ****** **** *** SFPD **** ***** *** for ***** ******** *** next ****, **** **** serves ** * ****** signal ** *** **** and **** **** ******** violations ** *** **** ordinance **** ****** ** public ********* *** ****-********* legal *******.

Comments (7)

**** ***** ******* ** me.

** *** *** *** letter **** **** ** the ***** ** *********** they ***** ***** ** the ********* **** **** recognize **** '***' (*** ordinance) ******** **** ** send **** **** **** letter:

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

****** *, ********* ** SupervisorsCity *** ****** ** San ************* ****, **** 2441 **. ******* * Goodlett ***** *********, ** 94102

********* *** *** *******:

**: ****’* ********** **** S.F. ************** **** ***.* following *** ***** ****** that ******** ****** *** Francisco ** *** **, 2020 *** *** **, 2020.

** ***** **** *** (“19B”) *** ******* ** August ****. ***** ***.*, the ********** ** ******** to ********* *** *** of ************ ********** ***** exigent *************.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

*** ***** **** **** argue ***** **** **** was******* ***** ******* *************?

* ***** **** *** angling ** **** **** their ********/***** ************* ***** asked *** *** *** footage***** *** **************** *** **** *** SFPD ****** *****************.

**'* ***** *****.

Agree
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

** **,

* **** ****** ** clarify **** *** **** didn't ******** ***** **** this *** *** **** under ******* *************, *** that *** ***** ******* to ** (**********: ** are *** ***** *******) is **** **** ****'* fight ****** ******* *** plaintiff's ***** **** ***** were ** ******* *************.

****'* **** *** *********'* complaint ***** (*.*. "** exigent *************):

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****'* **'* ******** ** paragraph **:

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* ***** **** *** that **'* ***** **** there's ** ******** ***** the ***** ** ****** already ****** ****** *** exigency ****** ** *** BoS ** ****** ****, that *** **** ********** the ********* ** *** time *******, ***. ** feels **** ******** ***** be * ******** **** here, *** **'* ***** that *** **** ****'* push **** ** *** lawsuit.

Agree
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

*** **** ****'* ******** argue **** **** *** not **** ***** ******* circumstances

***** *** ********, *** their ******** ** ** above ****** **** **** never **** *** *** thing **** *** ********** 42 **** **** *** - ****** *** *** the ****** ****** - which ***** **** ***'* be ** ********* ** 19B.

*** ********** ** ****** the **** ** ******* circumstances - ***** ****** that *** ************* *** *** *** USBIP *******....

*** ********** ** ******** says *** ********** ******* argument ** **** - because ******* ********* *** *** *** system ** ***.

****'* *** *** ****** to *** ***** ** Directors ** ************ ****** to **.... *** ** me ** ***** ** if**** *** ** **** thing**** ***** ******* **** said **** ****'* ** - ** ********* **.

*** ***** ******* ** me ** *** *** focus ** ***** ********... it's **** ***** *** arguments *** *** **** be ****.

Agree
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

**** ** **************. ******** protests ** *** ******* looting, ******** ******'* ********** on ****, ***** ******** damage. *** "********"(**** **** them *****) **** ******* circumstances. *** ******** ******* it *** ** ** the ***** *** **** important **** ** * government ** ******* **'* "law *******" ********(**, ******** in *******..*** *** ******). You ***'* ******* ** some ************* **** * lack ** **** *********** awareness. ***** **** ******** in *********** *** **** they ***. * ****** how **** **** ********** were ******** *** ** how **** ****** ****** the "********" *****? *** we ***** *** *** comment? ****, **** *********** themselves ********* ***** "**** choices" *** ******* *** entire ****; **** *** I ********? ****'* **** social ***** ********* **** designed ***, *****? ****'* really **** **** *** camera ******; **** **** on ** " ****** your ******* ******** ** choice ****" *** *****. When ****** ******** *** public ********* *** ***** attacked, ******* *********, **** running ****, ****** ** citizens ******, *** ** live ***** ********** ** prudent. **** *** *** " *** **** ******* us...you ***'* **** ** see ** ********** ******; much ********* ****** *** the *** ***". **** should **** ***** ***** actions ** **** *** monitor *******, ********* ******** via *** ******** ****** surveillance ***** ** **** and **** ***** *****. In **** ***** ******'* of *** *******, **** are ****** ********; ******* or ***. **, ******** yourselves *****.

* ********; **** ****. John- **** *** * raise.

Agree: 1
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

**#*, ****** **** *** have ***** **** ** the *** **** ** at ***** ***'* ****** there. ** *** *** neighbor ******* *** * magnet *** "******** **********" where *********** ****** ****** and **** **** ** all *** ****. ***** Square ** ********** ** the ******* ******** **** and * ******* *** criminal ******** *** *** kinds. ** ** **!**** (literally **** ** ***** where *** ****) *** junkies *** **** ***** doing ***** ***** ** sidewalks *** ** ********* doorways. *** ****** ** and ****** ***** *** the **** *** *** bad ****** ***** ** these ***** **** ******** protest **** ***** ** take ********* ** ****** in **** ***** *** don't *** **** *****. Book ******** * **** at *** *** ******* Drake *** $***/** *** just **** *******.....*** **** like *** *** ** a ***** ***** ******* at *****. ** *** are *********** **** **** on ****. * **** safer ** ************ **** time * *** ***** and **** ***** ** sketch.

*** ***** ** ** EXPECTATION ** ******* **** in ****** ***** ***** may ** ************ *******. Ever **** ** ****** or *********, **** ******** proactively *** **** ** stop ****** **** *********.

* *****, ***** ********* by **** *****!

Agree: 2
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

"**#*, ****** **** *** have ***** **** ** the *** **** ** at ***** ***'* ****** there. ** *** *** neighbor ******* *** * magnet *** "******** **********" where *********** ****** ****** and **** **** ** all *** ****. ***** Square ** ********** ** the ******* ******** **** and * ******* *** criminal ******** *** *** kinds. "

********, * **** **** there *** ********* ** many ** *** *****, most ********** ****** ** and *** ** *******. The ******** *** ** "peaceful" ** ********, *** often * **** ********* scene ** *** ********. See, *** **** *******, often *****, ** *** the *********, **********, *** rather, ***** **** *** charged **** (*******, *********..)******** and/or *********** ******/***. ** you ****** ** **** in * ***** ***** politicians *** ** *** of ***** **** *******, and ****, ** **** accurately, ******, ** ** their ****, ***** ******. In * ******* ***** we're **** ********* **** the ******, "********" *** treatment ** *********, *** society ** ****** ** fail. *** ** ** (failing), *****. ** ***** the ******* ***** ** better **** **** ***** places; *** ********* ***'* have ** ****** ** much ** ** **** stayed ** **** ***** regions.... ********, ** *** end *** *** **** you *****; *****.

Agree
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny

** ******* ** ** part ** * ***** initiative ** *** ****. While * ***** **** the ********* *** ****** behind ***** ******; ********* crimes ***** **** **** eyewitness ***********. ****, ****** media, *** *** ***** responder's **** **** *** often **** ** *** limited ******* ** *********** investigators **** ** **** with. **** ******* ***** have * ******** ****** on *** *********** *** enforcement ******** *****.

**** ****** ********* *** on ****** *********** ********** | *****.***

Agree
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful
Funny
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