SFSD banner rnd
August 2015 - ISSUE 31
  sm envl gry
See us Online!
Contact Us
(415) 554-7225


grey star
© 2015
San Francisco
Sheriff's Department
Ross Mirkarimi
A Message from Sheriff  
Ross Mirkarimi

In July, college level education for inmates took a great leap forward: we signed a Memorandum of Understanding with City College, and the US Department of Education announced the availability of Pell grants to eligible inmates to fund college education. Studies continue to document how investment in educational opportunities in jails and prisons reduces recidivism -- saving lives, and taxpayer dollars.
Proving that peer education is also invaluable, our year-old Diabetes Peer Support Pilot Program to train inmates as peers -- so they can help teach their fellow inmates how to understand and manage diabetes -- was a success! A series of inmate surveys showed that knowledge of the disease increased, thereby improving self-management. 
Ongoing staff development is crucial to staying fresh and ready to respond to emergencies. Last month, in partnership with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), we hosted a one-day training program for law enforcement on the investigation and prosecution of missing and exploited children cases. We were joined by 35 other law enforcement agencies from across Northern California to share techniques and build skills in the sad event of a missing child.
At the other end of the spectrum, we participated with other criminal justice agencies in the 2015 Youth Career Academy Class, introducing Bayview District youth to the wide variety of careers in criminal justice and how to apply for those jobs. Recruiting and training young people from the City's diverse communities for work in public safety is how community policing is built -- from the neighborhood out. 
In contrast to our very positive achievements in inmate education and staff development, last month, our department was launched into the national immigration debate with the tragic shooting of Kate Stienle. Like so much heartbreaking violence, this was a horrible act set in motion by a tangle of conflicting laws. As Sheriff, I am committed to working with other City leaders, state, and federal agencies to resolve these conflicts and produce a workable and lawful ordinance that reflects San Francisco's stance on the enforcement of laws leading to detentions and deportations. Read my July 16, 2015 letter to Mayor Ed Lee on this subject.

Reaching for the Stars - College Courses Offered at County Jail  


In-custody students are attentive during a City College child development course at CJ#2. Photo courtesy of Michael Ares/ S.F. Examiner.


Expanding on a three-year pilot program launched to reduce recidivism and create safer communities by providing educational opportunities to the City's incarcerated population, SFSD's Five Keys Charter High School and City College of San Francisco (CCSF) officially committed this month to a permanent partnership. The collaboration brings college classes, and introductions to college-level vocational certification tracks, to inmates at the County Jail. A goal of the partnership is to improve the post-release academic and vocational success of students who earn their high school diplomas while incarcerated.


Through Five Keys' and CCSF's new Memorandum of Understanding, inmates can receive concurrent high school and college credit for coursework. Students will also prepare for the rigors of college-level coursework with joint academic instruction from both Five Keys teachers and CCSF instructors.


Inmates studying in the program will receive one high school credit and one college credit -- conducive to short stays in the jail -- along with support towards a smoother transition from high school to college. Support measures include individual education plans for students wishing to continue taking City College courses upon release, education counseling, and post-release financial aid counseling. Vocational certificates that can be started in the jails and completed at City College through the program include Custodial, Drug and Alcohol Counselor, Youth Worker, Community Health Care Worker, and Post-Prison Health Care Worker. Classes are offered at both County Jail #2 and County Jail #5.


SFSD's award-winning Five Keys Charter High School's positive impact reaches beyond the walls of its jail-embedded classrooms to twenty-four community learning centers throughout San Francisco and Oakland and thirteen in Los Angeles -- serving over 9,000 students annually. Providing inmates with access to education helps create safer communities, reduces tax dollars spent on incarceration, and affords inmates the skills they'll need to rejoin communities and their families upon release.


Unlocking potential: S.F. County Jail offers first college credit classes to inmates. 7/24/15 SF Examiner. 


SFSD Hosts Regional Training on Investigating and Prosecuting Crimes Against Children


SFSD, in cooperation with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), on July 17, 2015, hosted a one day, first-of-its-kind SFSD training for law enforcement on the investigation and prosecution of missing and exploited children cases. Marc Klaas, President of the KlaasKids Foundation and BeyondMissing Inc., was the event's opening speaker.


Eighty-four law enforcement officers from across Northern California participated in the first-of-its-kind training.

Sheriff Mirkarimi initiated planning for

this training in December 2014 in Alexandria, Virginia, after meeting with NCMEC. "As the Sheriff and as a father, like all parents, we're preoccupied with the safety of our children," said the Sheriff. "Using my authority, we are    launching a first for   the SF Sheriff's Department in hosting a law enforcement training with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in how to better investigate and prosecute crimes against children."


The training which, according to NMEC, is the first of its kind in the state, was attended by 84 law enforcement officers throughout Northern California and took place at the Federal Reserve Bank in San Francisco.


Thirty-five law enforcement agencies representing district attorneys' offices, probation, and police and sheriffs' departments attended, including: the San Francisco, San Mateo, and Solano County Sheriff's Departments, the San Francisco, Alameda, Berkeley, East Palo Alto, and Oakland Police Departments, the Alameda and Contra Costa County District Attorney's Offices, San Francisco Adult Probation, San Mateo County Probation, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, and many others.


The Sheriff has made coordinating follow-ups to this important and popular training a priority for the department.

Bay Area officers attending intensive training on missing children cases. KTVU, 7/17/15.


San Francisco Sheriff, Missing Children Center Hosts Training for Officers. NBC Bay Area, 7/17/15. 


Youth in the House!


Youth Career Academy trainees participated in a canine demonstration.


On Tuesday, July 21, 2015, SFSD joined with SF Police, Adult Probation, Juvenile Probation, Administrative Office of the Court, and the Public Defender and District Attorney's Offices in welcoming eight Bayview District youth to the 2015 Youth Career Academy Class!


The all-day training and workshop provided a unique opportunity for the high school-aged girls and boys to learn more about the criminal justice field -- and the SFSD specifically -- as a career choice. During Tuesday's presentations, which were held at various SFSD facilities including the Hall of Justice, civilian and sworn staff introduced the trainees to a wide variety of SFSD jobs, related duties, application requirements, and application procedures. Participants also learned about our robust and innovative in-custody and community programs and the job opportunities related to them. The youth even had a chance to participate in a canine demonstration and in-custody roleplay scenario!   

National Night Out!


SFSD participated in a National Night Out event at Youngblood Coleman Park in the Bayview. Good food, spoken word performances, dancing, and children at play all ensured a successful and fun evening for all.


On August 4, 2015, SFSD participated in National Night Out, a law enforcement event which the National Association of Town Watch launched 30 years ago to heighten crime prevention awareness, generate support for local anti-crime programs, bolster neighborhood spirit, and foster police-community partnerships. National Night Out now involves over 37 million people and 15,000 communities from across the US, Canada, and military bases worldwide!


During the event, neighborhoods across the country host block parties, festivals, parades, cookouts, and other community events with safety demonstrations, seminars, youth events, visits from emergency personnel, and exhibits.


The Sheriff's Department participated in two National Night Out events, one in the Bayview at Youngblood Coleman Park and the second at the Waller Center, which was hosted by the Park Police Station. Many people attended both events, which proved to be wonderful opportunities for SFSD community relations, including answering questions from the public about our department and promoting our upcoming Career Information Session


Successful Diabetes Peer Support Pilot


Many jail inmates are at high risk for diabetes. So the Diabetes Peer Support Pilot was launched last fall with the goal of teaching participating inmates about diabetes in order to help prevent the disease.


250 inmates at County Jail #5 completed surveys for the diabetes study.


Five pods at CJ#5 in San Bruno received a formal diabetes lesson. In two of the five pods, selected inmates were trained as diabetes peer supporters to help answer diabetes questions or concerns posed by other inmates after the lesson was complete. Diabetes knowledge and confidence, which is linked to improved diabetes self-management, were measured by surveys over three weeks.


Over 250 inmates completed the surveys and there are some exciting results: 

  • Diabetes knowledge and confidence increased each week.
  • Pods with peer supporters increased their confidence more than the other pods.
  • The number of diabetes tests performed increased by 60% in the month after the intervention started.

Overall these are promising results that show the value of health education in jail and a possible role for inmate peer health supporters on other health topics.
A research group at the University of California at San Francisco interested in correctional health care proposed this project in the summer of 2014. Thanks to all the programming staff and the many deputies involved in making this study possible!   


How to Protect a Dignitary 


During the two-day U.S. Coast Guard-sponsored training, Sgt. Rosen, Sr. Deputy Dejesus, Sr. Deputy Rold, and Deputy Schmidt learned the basics for protecting visiting dignitaries.


In early June, Sgt. Rosen, Sr. Deputy Dejesus, Sr. Deputy Rold, and Deputy Schmidt from SFSD's Field and Custody Operations Divisions attended a U.S. Coast Guard-sponsored class on dignitary protection put on by the Diplomatic Security Service (DSS). The two-day class covered the basic principles of dignitary protection used by the DSS. Topics included protective intelligence, surveillance detection, site preparation, various walking formations, and how to use a motorcade. DSS provided several instructors along with motorcade vehicles. The class had about 50 participants from law enforcement agencies across the Bay Area. The training was held as a "thank you" for all the support DSS receives from local agencies who provide security to high value protectees in San Francisco and around the bay.


SFSD Around Town!

SFSD sworn staff members, family and friends at the 12th Annual San Francisco Giants' Law Enforcement Appreciation Night (vs. Milwaukee Brewers). Pictured attendees are wearing limited-edition law enforcement themed Giants commemorative scarves!

A total of 116 tickets were sold -- the most ever sold by the SFSD for this event! Funds will support the Bay Area Law Enforcement Assistance Fund and the California Peace Officer's Memorial Fund. Sadly, we lost 5-2 to the Brewers -- but, as you can see, that didn't dampen game goers' spirits! 

Sgt. R. Winters, Lisa Abrons, Chief of Staff Van Ly, and Sgt. J. Quanico's sons.

SFSD deputies enjoyed engaging with the community at our booth at the 22nd Annual Pistahan Parade and Festival on Saturday, August 8. Billed as the largest celebration of Filipino Americans in the U.S., attendees participated a celebration of Filipino art, dance, music, and food!
Deputies S. Santos and X. Murillo at the 22nd Annual Pistahan Parade and Festival.

Follow us on Twitter
Like us on Facebook 
© 2015 San Francisco Sheriff's Department 
Questions and comments to 

San Francisco Sheriff's Department | 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place | RM 456 | San Francisco | CA | 94102