theProjects Cultural Design Agency

Be Prepared: New Years and the SFPD

NYE Promoters and Venue Owners:

According to the CMCA (California Music and Culture Association), tonight the SFPD and the ABC are going to be focusing all of their efforts on NYE parties and events. They have planned a ‘zero tolerance’ policy on any ‘breach’ in conduct. This will be patrolled by both uniform and undercover cops. The CMCA is encouraging venue owners to “…carefully monitor the conduct of your patrons and of your employees.”

If any incident occurs, try to film it. This is the best evidence against improper patrol techniques used recently by the SFPD. If an incident occurs, fill out the form below and make several copies before the night is over.

DJ’s, VJ’s, Performers etc:

If your property gets seized, here are the steps you must take to get your equipment back:

  • Go to 850 Bryant Street, 2nd floor, room 101.
  • Get a form called Order to Show Cause [Why Property Should Not Be Returned] and fill it out. (You don’t have a case number yet, but you’ll need the police report number and list of property taken.)
  • Take the form to Department 18. (If you go from 9 to 10:30, the judge is not on the bench, but the Clerk is there. Tell them that you want to get seized property back. The Clerk may take the form from you and tell you to come back the next day, or tell you to wait to see the judge.)
  • The Judge will sign the form and give you a court date.
  • You will pick up the signed form, probably the next day. You’ll need at least 5 copies of it. There isn’t a place to do this at the Hall of Justice, though you can ask at the Clerk’s Office. You may have to go across the street to a bailbonds place.
  • Take the form to Room 101 and give it to a clerk to file it. They will stamp all the copies.
  • Take one stamped copy to the Police Department at room 475.
  • Take one stamped copy to the District Attorney’s Office at room 322.
  • If you can, get in touch with Attorney Ronnie Wagner, who handles these matters for the Police Department. Her number is (415) 553-1147. (Be very nice.)
  • Tell her why it is a hardship for you not to have your property and ask if she can get the stuff back to you before the hearing date. If not, wait for your hearing date.
  • Show up. Court doesn’t start until after 10A in Department 18, though it will tell you to be there at 9. When they call your case, if there is no opposition from Ms. Wagner or the DA’s office, you will get your stuff back that same day. Bring photo ID, and if you have it, proof of ownership.

(Thanks to Jennifer Garnick of the Electronic Frontier Foundation)


Be safe, be aware, and have fun ringing in the New Year!